Great Bend Middle School wrestlers traveled to Salina on Saturday to test their skills against Salina Lakewood, Clay Center, and McPherson. The panther wrestlers won their first match up with Salina Lakewood 63-39.
“Our team came out a little slower than I would like,” said coach Jake Hofflinger. “It was an early morning and I think our team was half asleep. I hope we learn from that and it does not happen again.”
Next for the Great Bend team was Clay Center. “Clay Center is a wrestling town. You can bet any kid they put on the mat will be a fighter and will have good position. These kids will not beat themselves,” said Hofflinger in his pre-match speech.
The Panthers won the duel 75-12 only losing two matches.
“This is by far our best wrestling of the year,” said coach Daniel Schneider. The last duel of the day was against an undefeated McPherson team. The Panthers fought hard and lost by one point 48-49. “Of course I hate losing by one point but looking back on it we gave them 12 points in opens. Our guys wrestled well. I’m disappointed to lose but overall, I have to be happy with our performance.”
“We have a lot of young, talented athletes this year. The kids are coachable and give great effort at meets and at practice,” said Hofflinger.
The next outing for the Panther Wrestlers is Dec. 2 when they travel to McPherson. Undefeated wrestlers for the day were Drew Liles, Carsyn Schooler, Jonas Meeks, Jeff Spragis, Gage Fritz, and Kaden Schroder.