Source: Lake Geneva Regional News

Badger grapplers capture title

by Mike Ramczyk

January 10, 2013

VERONA — At Saturday’s Verona Duals, the Badger wrestling squad proved its state ranking is no fluke.

The local boys dominated the competition, going 5-0 to take first place. Four wrestlers went undefeated, and five others were 4-1 for the day.

Badger is ranked No. 12 in the state in Division 1 according to Wisconsin Wrestling Online.

Badger coach Shane Koehl said he was excited about his team’s performance.

“We took care of teams we should have,” he said. “It was a good day for our team and individuals to start gaining back some of the confidence that we lacked the previous couple weeks. Anytime you are able to win a tourney, it is a good day. We had a lot of good matches and were able to work a lot of moves and situations that we had been working on the past week.”

Perhaps the most impressive individual performance came from senior Randy Shine at 145, who went 5-0 including a win over state-ranked Eric Schmid of Verona. Shine is a perfect 21-0 on the season.

“Randy needs to be pushed right now and this is the competition he needs to reach his goal of a state championship,” Koehl said.

Tristan Steiner (152), Andy Cychner (170) and Tyler Otero (182) all went undefeated as well.

“They all wrestled solid, making very few mistakes,” Koehl said. “It was great to see Tristan get some wins. He has lost a lot of close matches recently.”

Mike Peter (106), Alex Martinez (120), Andrew Allen (160), Tayler Hildebrandt (195) and Robert Johnson (220) all finished 4-1 on the day.

“Our lineup is just about 100 percent,” Koehl said. “We have a couple injuries at 120 that we are dealing with, and kids are starting to adjust to their weight classes and get stronger.”

On Saturday, Badger opened with two convincing wins, a 61-9 victory over Portage and a 64-3 whooping of Verona.

In its third match against Walworth County opponent East Troy, the Trojans jumped out to a 7-0 lead. However, three straight pins from Shine, Steiner and Allen helped Badger gain control.

Badger dominated Slinger, 62-12, to advance to the championship bout against Monroe. Shine, Steiner, Cychner and Hildebrandt all notched pins early as Badger bolted to a 27-3 lead. Martinez and Zach Leonard (126) provided some insurance late, and Badger won, 42-24.

Badger will host the Badger Invite Saturday. The 10-team tournament will feature Big Foot, Homestead, Muskego, Iowa-Grant and Wisconsin Rapids Lincoln.

However, Koehl already has his sights set on a Jan. 24 home dual with Elkhorn, a battle that could determine the Southern Lakes champion.

“We must gain confidence, be more physical and beat Elkhorn,” Koehl said. “We have challenged our seniors, and we will go as far as their leadership takes us. They have to set the pace and the younger wrestlers will follow.”