Wrestlers young but ready

The Philip Scotties will be ready for their first meet December 3 and 4 as they have been at practice since November 15.

The 16 members went through wrestle-offs on Tuesday to determine who in each weight class will represent Philip at the Stanley County Tournament in Fort Pierre. All of the 14 weight classes may not be filled because of some injuries. Some weight ranges can not be filled by any current wrestlers.

Head wrestling coach Matt Donnelly said, “The first tournament will be tough. As long as we put on a good show, we’re going to be fine. The team is a bit young.” The team has only one returning senior, Brit Miller, and he will be out of competition until after Christmas because of a football injury. Donnelly continued, “We are junior class and junior high dominate. By districts we should be very competitive. We will keep improving each and every week.”

Practice has been at 6:00 a.m. on some days, but will usually be at 3:30 p.m. after school. Weight lose is not one of Donnelly’s concerns. He said, “They lift weights more than diet. We’ll work hard and get into shape.”

Donnelly said that having most of the practices at the Legion Hall is, “good, great. It has a lot of room and that is nice. We have more room so we can use full mats. We can leave the mats down instead of rolling them up all the time.”

Helping whip the team into shape is Assistant Coach JR Snyder. Carrie Buchholz is the student manager. She said that she is interested in wrestling because “I have brothers who wrestle and it gives me something worthwhile to do.”

The Stanley County Wrestling Tournament will be held at the Parkview Gymnasium in Fort Pierre on Friday and Saturday, December 3-4. Wrestling begins at 4:00 p.m. on Friday. Participating schools will be Philip, Chamberlain, Cheyenne-Eagle Butte, Gettysburg, Gregory / Burke, Hoven / Cresbard, Lemmon, Lyman, Miller, Mobridge, Parkston, Wall / Kadoka, Wessington Springs / Woonsocket, Winner, Stanley County, Sully Buttes and Todd County.

Wrestlers will be weighed in each day. The top six wrestlers in each weight class will earn medals and the seventh and eighth positions will earn ribbons.