As long as Chickasha remains in the football playoff race, it'll keep some of the school's top wrestlers off the mat.
That doesn't seem to be bothering anyone, especially head coach Chad Randle as preparations for the 2013-14 season are already under way. But, those wrestlers that remain with the Fightin' Chicks football team can expect to hit the mat running whenever their postseason ends.
"We're going to work them in and get them as good as they can be every day," Randle said. "In wrestling, I know the kids are like me; I don't like to lose anything. If you make a lackluster effort and phrase it like 'well, we're just going to ease into stuff,' then it just gets frustrating."
Some of those wrestlers may not have to far to go before reaching top form. Of the returning competitors, one -- Josh Latham -- is a defending state champion, and three -- Lamar Neff, Dakota Resendez, and Triston Hill -- were named All Conference second team last year. With a solid base, Randle said the focus is more on pushing the younger wrestlers -- called "pups" -- to raise their game.
"We lost some good seniors, so we're going to be younger this year than we've been in a long time," Randle said. "We had about five or six guys in the lineup last year that were state qualifiers or state champions that are pretty tough. I know what to expect from them, and our goal is obviously to get them better and so forth.
"But I always say that our team, how good we're going to be, is going to depend on the pups and which ones are ready to step up and start making a name for themselves."