Mustang wrestlers open season

By JOCELYN SHEETS
Register Sports Editor

Register/Jocelyn Sheets
Putting on the squeeze in a cradle move is Iola High’s Devin Culler as he wraps up Eureka High’s Montana Williams during season-opening wrestling action at Eureka Thursday. Culler didn’t pin Williams but won 9-0 as he swept the 152-pound matches against Eureka and Anderson County.

EUREKA — Working on a learning curve, Iola High’s Mustang wrestlers got their first lesson in varsity double duals Thursday night.
The Mustangs opened the 2009-2010 season against Anderson County High and host Eureka High. Iola is in its second year of high school wrestling but didn’t wrestle in any varsity dual action last year.
Anderson County defeated Iola 72-12 after losing its dual with Eureka 40-30. To finish up the night, the Mustangs wrestled against Eureka and lost 54-28.
In dual wrestling meets, two teams face each other in 14 individual weight class matches. Not all teams will have wrestlers in each weight class.
If one team has a 112-pound wrestler and the other team does not, team points are awarded for a forfeit win. For each match victory, a team is awarded six points.
“We knew we’d have lots of things to work on and we saw that tonight,” said Ron Schomaker, Iola High head wrestling coach. “It might be hard to believe but we're even younger as a team this year than last year.”
Iola filled eight of the 14 weight divisions against Anderson County. The Bulldogs had a 24-0 lead for forfeit wins in 103, 112, 119 and 125 before a match was contested on the mat.
The Mustangs were behind 48-0 when sophomore Devin Culler pinned Michael Gigstad in 54 seconds. The win in the 152-pound match got Iola on the scoreboard.
Junior Marcus Sullivan won the next match, 160 pounds, by a forfeit. That accounted for all of Iola’s points against Eureka.
With no wrestlers in the lowest weight classes, Iola started behind again, 12-0, against Eureka. Eureka only had wrestlers in the 112 and 119 weight classes.
It came down to the 152-pound match again for Iola to get points. Culler defeated Eureka’s Montana Williams 9-0. Sophomore Zack Vaughn posted a win in the 160-pound class via a forfeit.
Sullivan moved up to wrestling at 171 against Tate McCoy of Eureka. Sullivan won by an 18-4 decision.
Junior Chris Linn won by forfeit in the 285-pound class for Iola.
“Chris missed practices before and during Thanksgiving break. I wasn’t sure where he stood (with the team) until this week,” Schomaker said of why he hadn’t talked of Linn in preseason information.
“My policy is missed practices have to be made up before a kid can wrestle. Chris made up his practices.”
Iola will be sending eight wrestlers to Saturday’s Caney Valley High Invitational.
Here are the complete Iola results from Thursday’s double dual:

Iola against Anderson County

130 pounds — Brent Clark was pinned by Kody Crook, 3:05.
135 pounds — Lee Berg was pinned by Colby Brownrigg, 5:01.
145 pounds — Joseph Myrick was pinned by Zach DuPont, 1:02.
152 pounds — Devin Culler pinned Michael Gigstad, :54.
160 pounds — Marcus Sullivan won by forfeit.
171 pounds — Drew Shepherd was pinned by Max Hopkins, :34.
189 pounds — Stephen McDonald was pinned by Richard Vandenberg, 1:34.
285 pounds — Chris Linn was pinned by Marcus Furguson, 1:20.

Junior Varsity Matches
171 — Zach Crawford pinned Chance Miller.
189 — Denton Christian pinned Cameron Hutchcraft.
171 — Zack Vaughn pinned Miller.

Iola against Eureka

130 pounds — Clark was pinned by Brandon Ray, :18.
135 pounds — Berg was pinned by Chase Mayfield, 1:53.
145 pounds — Myrick was pinned by Matt Winn, 5:31.
152 pounds — Culler won by 9-0 dec. over Montana Williams.
160 pounds — Zack Vaughn won by forfeit.
171 pounds — Sullivan won by 18-4 dec. over Tate McCoy.
189 pounds — McDonald was pinned by Tyler Lowe, 2:18.
285 pounds — Linn won by forfeit.