The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

Sports

February 18, 2014

Iowa wrestling CHS wrestlers upbeat about state meet

CLINTON — Hunter Genco is riding high as can be as he prepares to enter the Iowa high school wrestling championship for the fourth time Thursday at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines.

He takes a 37-1 record into the event, and he has won 32 matches in a row, the last eight (not counting two forfeits) by fall.

But, he isn’t worried about going out with too much confidence. To the contrary, he doesn’t have to remember too far in the past when just the opposite was the issue.

“I don’t know if there is such a thing as overconfidence,” Genco said Saturday after winning the district title at 126 pounds in Epworth. “Last year at state, I had no confidence -- first round I had no confidence. I was winning 9-6 or something like that to the kid who wound up finishing second, and I don’t know what it was, but I gave up on myself, and he wound up taking me down three or four times in the last 30 seconds. After that match I gained confidence. I said,’I’m going to win, I’m going to win.’ I think I went 5-0 after that.”

That 9-8 loss was to Indianola’s John Gioffredi, whom Genco will meet in the quarterfinals if both win their opening matches Thursday afternoon. Genco, ranked third in Class 3A at 126 pounds, takes on eighth-ranked Logen Rodriguez of Cedar Rapids Kennedy in his opener.

Genco’s lone loss this year was against Pleasant Valley’s Spencer Nevills, which he avenged in the Mississippi Athletic Conference.

That loss, like the one to Gioffredi, has served as reminder to Genco about what can happen.

“I’m kind of glad I lost because it was a wakeup call,” he said. “Once I lost that match, I was, ‘Wow, I need to change.’ I defintitely turned the corner. Since then I’ve pinned just about every guy I’ve wrestled. It all reflects back to my confidence level. In the past couple of weeks, winning all these tournaments, I feel unstoppable.”

Genco, who has recorded 26 pins this season, is one of three seniors who will compete for the River Kings at the three-day meet. Twins Alex Caldwell and Dustin Caldwell are the others. Alex is making his third trip to Des Moines, Dustin his second.

“Last year, I didn’t really know what to expect,” said Dustin, who placed second in the district meet. “This year, I’m returning, so it’s going to be a little easier to focus. I’m just looking for a gold medal, obviously, but to go out and wrestle for the last time.”

Dustin (31-9), ranked ninth in Class 3A, will take on fourth-ranked Ethan Ruby of Council Bluffs Lewis Central in the first round at 152 pounds, while Alex, ranked fourth, faces Zeljko Caculovic of Urbandale in his opener at 145 on Thursday afternoon.

“I can’t wait to see what we do out there,” Alex (31-8) said. “I feel pretty good. You kind of know what the nerves are going to be like and you kind of know what to expect when you get out there. We’re in the second session, which is a little bit different, but it will still be the same feeling, we’ll warm up the same, we’ll get ready the same, we’ll eat the same. I look forward to good things again, and I can’t wait to get out there.”

Junior Dillion Chase (31-3) also is making a return trip, and like the other three, he knows what it’s like to step on the awards stand on Saturday night. Chase, ranked No. 1 in the state, meets No. 6 Hank Swalla of Ames in his first match at 170 pounds.

With four returning state placewinners representing the school, Clinton coach J.D. Lueders is headed to Des Moines confident in what they can do.

“I think they have higher expectations,” he said. “They know what it’s like out there. They’ve placed. I’d love to see somebody win a state title. That’s the bottom line for a lot of these guys. Getting out of districts is big, but then you refocus and that’s the goal next week.”

Clinton’s fifth qualifier, freshman Tyler Clark (29-11) at 285, is hoping to draw on the other four wrestlers’ state-meet experience.

“I’m going to be looking up to them, do what they do and enjoy the ride,” he said.

Clark, a district runner-up, has the toughest first-round assignment. He drew second-ranked Jake Marnin of Southeast Polk.

In Class 2A, Camanche’s Brice Everson (35-6) will face Atlantic’s third-ranked Darrian Schwenke (48-1) in the first round at 126 pounds Thursday morning.

Only one of Central DeWitt’s four qualifiers drew a ranked wrestler. Carter Cahill (18-11) will meet No. 1-ranked Chase Straw (47-0) of Independence at 145 pounds.

In the Sabers’ other first-round matches, Bryant Woodford (22-16) will get Derek Holschlag (40-6) of LaPorte City Union at 106, Mason Cousins (26-12) will try to avenge an earlier loss to Michael Neal of Vinton-Shellsburg at 152 and Chase Kraklio (33-11) meets Grinnell’s Jared Keenan (37-8) at 195.

 

1
Text Only
Sports
  • 7-25-14 1B-Photo, Clinton track Clinton king of Brady DAVENPORT — It might not have been the blue oval, but Clinton track can place its mark at the top of the hill.The quartet of Barrion Collins, Marquis Robinson, Quavon Jones and Deshond Robinson won the high school boys division of the Battle Up Brady

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • PHOTOS: Clinton Junior Baseball 2014 Tournament Winners

    Clinton Junior Baseball 2014 Tournament Winners - Majors, Minors, Pee Wee

    July 25, 2014

  • Testimony ends in trial LOS ANGELES (AP) — Testimony ended Wednesday in the trial to determine whether Donald Sterling’s estranged wife can sell the Los Angeles Clippers in a proposed $2 billion deal with former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.Shelly Sterling, who had testified

    July 25, 2014

  • Whitecaps take away Clinton offense CLINTON — The Clinton LumberKings (13-19, 43-57) mustered only five hits as the visiting West Michigan Whitecaps (20-12, 61-41) shut down the hometown club at Ashford University Field.Whitecaps’ starter Jonathon Crawford (6-2) allowed only four men t

    July 25, 2014

  • 7-25-14 1B-Photo, Cubs San Diego sinks Cubs, 13-3 CHICAGO — Tyson Ross kept mowing down Chicago Cubs hitters, long enough for San Diego’s suddenly potent offense to carry the Padres to victory for the second straight night.Ross struck out a career-high 11, and the light-hitting Padres broke out for

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Trestman ready for round 2 BOURBONNAIS, Ill. — This time last year, Chicago Bears coach Marc Trestman was still something of a curiosity.He was a guy leading an NFL team for the first time as training camp started, plucked from Canada after spending several years out of the le

    July 25, 2014

  • Sox jump on Minnesota MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — An impressive start from Hector Noesi was just a couple of pitches away from being something really special.Noesi allowed three hits over 7 2-3 innings, and Adam Eaton had three hits and two RBIs to lead the Chicago White Sox to a

    July 25, 2014

  • 7-24-14 1B-Photo, Choice 2 Cinderella run ends DUBUQUE — The playoff run was fun while it lasted. Dubuque Hempstead, the No. 1-ranked baseball team in Class 4A entering Wednesday, ended Clinton’s chances at back-to-back appearances in the state tournament in Des Moines. The Mustangs knocked out t

    July 24, 2014 2 Photos

  • Bears bring high hopes to '14 camp BOURBONNAIS, Ill. (AP) — Chicago Bears general manager Phil Emery understands expectations are soaring. He’s not backing away from them, either.The Bears are aiming high, hoping to return to the NFL playoffs after missing out for the sixth time in se

    July 24, 2014

  • LUMBERKINGS Barbosa uses past as motivation CLINTON — Clinton LumberKings outfielder Aaron Barbosa is just like one of the guys, but his path to Clinton is unlike the others.Barbosa was undrafted after playing his college baseball at Northeastern University, but he had a chance to display his

    July 24, 2014

High School Sports