Aaron Colen, Sports Editor, Aaron.Colen@chickashanews.com
The Chickasha High School wrestling team got a relatively easy win over a shorthanded Marlow squad in its first dual of the season Tuesday night at the CHS Activity Center.
The Fightin' Chicks won the dual 65-12, and only lost one match while benefitting from some forfeits in the lower weight classes, something the usually top-heavy Chicks aren't used to.
"It's nice to be on the opposite end of it for once," head coach Chad Randle said. It's just nice to have a full roster, and it's probably the first time in my career."
Chickasha won by forfeit at 106, 113, 138 and 145, and lost by forfeit at 152.
In the lower five weight classes, Chickasha will be counting on the development of freshmen throughout the year, with D.J. Warner (106), Lamar Neff (113), Dakota Resendez (120), Kyle McNatt or Jordan Molder (126) and Denver Calhoun (132).
"We've got five freshmen in a row there, and that will catch up with us a little bit when we wrestle a little bit tougher teams where they've got some studs in there," Randle said. "With [freshmen], it's just facing your fears and learning to battle, because we've got a couple of them in there that can really compete in Dakota and Denver, and a couple of other guys that can help us. They've got to find out how good they want to be."
Randle said he was happy with the way the dual went, but wasn't going to put too much stock into what happened against a weaker Marlow team.
"It was hard to tell because there were really only two matchups against tough kids, since they're kind of down this year," Randle said. "We didn't have any injuries and nothing negative happened, so we'll take it and build on it."
During these early-season duals, conditioning will play a big role in the results. Randle said he has mixed levels of conditioning on his team right now.
"The conditioning for a couple of my offseason kids is a whole lot better than the football players," Randle said. "So a lot of those guys come in and aren't anywhere near where they need to be."
Many Chickasha wrestlers are also still in the process of dropping weight, which can affect their performance while they are getting in shape.
"We had guys that had to get down because we want to fill up, but the kids are disciplined," Randle said. "I appreciate them. There are a lot of teams that aren't doing that right now, but we have a couple of guys that wouldn't be able to wrestle if they didn't get down."
The first match of the night was at 120 pounds, where Resendez won by 7-0 decision.
Chickasha's only loss of the night came at 126 pounds, with freshman Kyle McNatt losing by fall in the third period.
Calhoun won by fall in the second period of his 132 pound bout, and he was up 6-3 at the time of the pin.
Triston Hill wrestled Marlow's 152-pounder in an exhibition due to some forfeits, but won a close 6-4 overtime decision despite wrestling a bigger opponent.
"It helped Triston to have that really tough match, because he wasn't ready to have a tough match his first time down, but he handled it well, and even pulled it out at the end," Randle said.
Bubba Wright won by 12-1 decision at 160 pounds. Riley Williams won a 15-3 decision at 170.
The Fightin' Chicks closed out the dual with first-period pin victories by Josh Latham (182), Sam Richardson (195) and Jacoby Brown (heavyweight).
Brown is wrestling at heavyweight as he continues to drop his football weight to get down to 220, where he won the state championship last year. He weighed in at 257 in Tuesday's dual.
"I don't know about at practice, because I'm such a control freak, but I'll tell you what, they help a ton, keeping the kids busy," Randle said. "I've been skeptical of having coaches in the past, because there are coaches that'll just kind of sit there and don't want to do anything, but the coaches I've got, they want to learn."
Last year, Zach Hill coached the junior high and was the high school team's only assistant.
Chickasha's next competition is a dual at home against Duncan at 6 p.m. Thursday, and that will be the last time the Chicks wrestle at home until homecoming on Jan. 17.
The Chickasha Junior High squad won its dual against Marlow, 57-18.
Devon Stephens won the first match by fall with 1:08 left in the first period.
Montana Moon lost a 6-4 decision at 89 pounds. Javier Willets won the 95 pound match 8-2.
Brett Stone lost 5-3 at 106 pounds. Triston Hopgood lost by fall at 113 pounds.
Chickasha won by forfeit at 120, 126, 132 and 140 pounds, giving the Fightin' Chicks a sizable lead in the dual.
Damian Barron won with a first-period pin at 150 pounds, as did Dao Xian Lim at 162.
Jace Howard and Anthony Outhaithavy won by forfeit at 195 and 200 pounds, respectively.
Kobe Powell finished the dual by pinning his heavyweight opponent late in the first period.