Archbold wrestling has a bevy of athletes returning as they hope to contend for a Northwest Ohio Athletic League title this season.
“Our best guys will have the expectation of being state placers, and we should be competitive in most dual meets simply because we have such good numbers,” said head coach Brian Becher on his outlook for the season ahead.
Among those list of returnees include sophomores Wyat Fryman (district qualifier), Hayden Dickman (district qualifier), Wyatt Armstrong (district alternate), Logen Bowerman, Jose Torres, Gabe Chapa, Brayton Hobbs, and Dylan Aeschliman; juniors Rusty Short, Jose Luna, Bransin Ebersole, and Spencer Simon; and seniors Andrew Francis (state qualifier), Carson Meyer (state qualifier), Josh Nofzinger (district alternate), and Johnathan Yoder (district qualifier).
“We have 30 kids signed up. Six incoming junior high state qualifiers is the most that we have ever had,” said Becher of his team’s strengths.
Those incoming junior high state qualifiers are Mason Miller, at 106 pounds; Ian Grime, 120 pounds; Brodie Dominique, 132 pounds; Wyatt Ripke, 160 pounds; Yong Rata, 220 pounds; and Blake Grime, 285 pounds.
The Blue Streaks have a combined total of eight juniors and seniors, but it’s clear Becher would like to have more upperclassmen. “We have low numbers in our upper two grades,” he said of his team’s biggest weakness.
They are also having to replace two-time state qualifier Brennan Short, Mason Babcock (state qualifier), Shane Eicher (three-time district qualifier), Juan Garcia (three-time district qualifier), and Adrian Juarez (district qualifier).
Becher has his team finishing third in the NWOAL race. He projects Delta to be first and Wauseon second.
“The traditionally strong wrestling programs of Delta, Wauseon, and Liberty Center should once again be at the top of the league,” Becher said. “The wrestlers from all three of those schools are technically sound and wrestle very hard. All of the other teams in our league have competitive individuals but lack the depth of the better teams.”
Last season, the Streaks finished fourth in the league behind Wauseon, Liberty Center and Delta. They will try to up that placement in 2020-21.
Reach Max Householder at 419-335-2010