The Archbold wrestling team has a packed roster this season and they hope to make the most of it.
“Our numbers are good with 38 wrestlers signed up, 7 of those have competed at the district tournament,” said head coach Brian Becher of his team. “A good playoff run in football is always a great thing as it creates a winning attitude, and it allows more time for the coaches to focus on the wrestlers that are not still playing football.”
The Blue Streaks bowed out of the football playoffs this past weekend as they were beaten by Liberty Center, 38-35.
Of the 38 on their roster, 18 are returning letter winners. The most notable returnee for the Streaks is sophomore Brodie Dominique at 144 pounds. Dominique placed seventh in Division III in the 138-pound weight class at last year’s state competition.
Also back are Mason Miller (106, district qualifier), Logen Bowerman (113, girls state qualifier), Jordan Rodriguez (120), Brennan Garrow (132), Gabe Chapa (138, district qualifier), Ian Grime (144), Jose Torres (144), Rusty Short (150), Wyatt Ritta (150), Jose Luna (165), Wyat Ripke (175, district qualifier), Hayden Dickman (190, district placer), Dylan Aeschliman (190), Brian Burrowes (215), Spencer Simon (285), Bransin Ebersole (285), Blake Grime (285).
“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 Coach Becher on the outlook for his team in 2021-22.
According to Becher, some sacrifices will have to be made in order for his team to have its most success this year.
“Some of our wrestlers will need to wrestle above their ideal weight class for us to put our best team on the mat,” he explained.
Archbold will have to replace Carson Meyer, last year’s 182-pound state champion in Division III; plus Andrew Francis, a previous state qualifier; and Josh Nofzinger, a district placer.
The Blue Streak coach looks for his squad to finish near the middle of the pack in the Northwest Ohio Athletic League. He has Delta, Wauseon, and Liberty Center as his top three, followed by Archbold, Evergreen, Montpelier, Bryan, Patrick Henry and Swanton.
“Delta, Liberty Center, and Wauseon all have great dual meet teams, as is evident by all having qualified for the state duals based upon the performance of their underclassmen at the 2021 district tournament. Evergreen has improved a lot from a couple of years ago and returns all of their starters from the sectional tournament,” said Becher of the league race.
Archbold begins the season on Saturday, Dec. 4 in a tournament at Cory-Rawson High School.
Reach Max Householder at 419-335-2010.