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Green wrestlers suited for competing in tournaments

2/20/2014 - South Side Leader
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By Sean Patrick

GREEN — Green High School wrestling head coach Nate Eicher believes the postseason is a great opportunity for his wrestlers to show off their true capabilities.

“We’re more of a tournament team than a dual team,” he said. “And after the way they competed last weekend, I think everybody’s ready to go. Everybody who was coming off the mat was already talking about gunning for next week. I really think everybody is peaking at the right time.”

This past weekend, Green placed fifth at the sectional tournament, which Eicher said was “actually a little better than what we were predicting.”

“We ended up getting a few more kids out than we anticipated,” he stated. “We tied with what we had last year, sending seven kids, and then we actually had two wrestlers in the finals. We ended up getting a champion at 182 [pounds]. We were thinking we might get four or five kids out, but the kids ended up wrestling to the best of their ability, and we ended up squeaking out a couple more.”

The sectional champion for Green was senior Jake Gladwell.

“He has been competing at 170 pounds all year long and was real strong. We decided as a coaching staff to bump him up to 182, where we thought there might be a little better shot for him. It turned out to be a pretty good move because it fit his style. He’s a bigger kid and it definitely fit him to wrestle up in that weight class,” Eicher said. “He’s been wrestling really strong all year and he placed at almost every tournament he wrestled at. Unfortunately, he broke his hand over the Christmas break. He was out for two weeks, but he came back from that and placed third at the Suburban League meet.”

Also with a top showing at the sectional meet, Eicher said, was 138-pounder Ryan Kaminski. The junior lost in the finals in overtime.

“He’s probably wrestled the most solid on the team all around all year,” the coach said. “He won the North Canton Hoover tournament, and he placed at every tournament he wrestled. Kaminski is really someone to keep your eyes on here.”

Next up for Green is the Mentor District Tournament Feb. 22-23, where seven wrestlers will compete individually for the school. In addition to Gladwell and Kaminski, the other wrestlers will be: sophomore Floyd Rogers; juniors Max Riffle, Jake Bostic and Noah Schaub; and senior Chris Doyle.

“After looking at our draws and where they seeded us, if everyone wrestles well, there could be a possibility of getting a couple of guys out [to the state tournament],” Eicher said. “It’s the strongest district in the state, though, so they will really have to show up on that day. Someone to keep an eye on is Chris Doyle. He lost a real heart-breaker [at sectionals], and I think he’s on a high right now. Chris really has a chance to go on to state and place, as long as he can wrestle to his ability.”

Overall this season, Green finished 8-10 in dual meets. The team placed third at the Suburban League meet and finished fifth in the league as far as dual meets.

“We had a rough dual season because we were giving up four weight classes,” Eicher said. “We were just below .500, but we’re definitely more of a tournament team. That’s why this is the best part of the season for us. Our individuals are getting a chance to really shine through right now.”

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