The Creston/Orient-Macksburg wrestling team easily rolled past Chariton, 60-13, here on Thursday for senior night in the Panthers’ final tuneup before hosting the Hawkeye 10 Conference Tournament on Saturday.
Head coach Darrell Frain said he saw some encouraging things on Thursday, even in some of the team’s losses.
“We had a few forfeits along the way, but for the most part, we wrestled pretty well,” Frain said. “Even on some of our losses, we closed the gap on getting beat a little bit, so I think we wrestled really well.”
Two of those matches where the Panthers closed the gap compared to previous losses were at 126 pounds with Gage Cheers against Devin Harberts and at 182 pounds with Seth Maitlen against Carter Isley.
Cheers lost an 8-3 decision to Harberts.
“Gage gave up some back points early and got a little behind, but battled back and got some back points in the third, and closed the gap and had an opportunity to turn him again,” Frain said. “That’s a match we could see again at districts.
Likewise, Maitlen could see Isley again at districts, as well. Isley won a 5-2 decision over Maitlen Thursday night.
“He (Maitlen) got pinned by Isley pretty fast the first time, and he closed the gap at John Harris, and got it to 5-2 this week,” Frain said. “We’re slowing him down a little bit, but we’ve got to find a way to score on him in case we see him again.”
The Panthers honored seven seniors during a senior night ceremony. Seniors on this year team are Gage Cheers, Jake Marlin, Jacob Johnston, Cole Tanner, Nathan Robinson, Katie Stevens and Keaton Hulett.
“It’s one of those things you don’t realize how many seniors you have until you have senior night for them,” Frain said. “A good tribute to them and a good night for them. All the support the community gives to them, just a good night for all of them.”
Tanner (220), Johnston (145) and Marlin (152) each picked up pins for the Panthers in their matches, while Hulett (195) and Robinson (285) each won by forfeit.
Glenwood wrapped up an undefeated Hawkeye 10 Conference duals record Thursday night, clinching the Hawkeye 10 Conference championship with a 56-18 win over Harlan.
But, Creston/O-M hosts the Hawkeye 10 Conference Tournament on Saturday, and Frain believes his team has a chance to beat Glenwood and defend its tournament championship.
“In a tournament setting, I think we’ll be OK,” Frain said. “I think our depth will get us through it. It’s a little different than typical years. Lewis Central is down, and you can usually count on them to knock off some Glenwood wrestlers. It’s going to come down to some head-to-head matches. I think we’ll be right there and have to compete well.”
The Panthers hope to be back at full strength by Saturday. Gavin Leith sat out Thursday’s dual against Chariton with the flu.
Frain said some of the key weights will be the lower weight classes for the Panthers, and guys like Robinson, Maitlen and Tanner in the upper weight classes.
“A lot of it is going to come down to our lighter weights,” Frain said. “The fact they can score a lot of points on the backside is huge for us. Cole Tanner is huge for us on the top half. Guys that are coming on like Nate and Seth, if they can compete well, we may have a chance.”
Saturday’s action kicks off at 10:30 a.m.
Creston/O-M 60, Chariton 13
160 — Trevor Frain (COM) pinned Evan Havick (Char), :34.
170 — Adam Baker (COM) pinned Dallas Cady (Char), 1:26.
182 — Carter Isley (Char) dec. Seth Maitlen (COM), 5-2.
195 — Keaton Hulett (COM) won by forfeit.
220 — Cole Tanner (COM) pinned Chris Wright (Char), 1:57.
285 — Nathan Robinson (COM) won by forfeit.
106 — Stone Hammons (COM) won by forfeit.
113 — Kruz Adamson (COM) won by forfeit.
120 — Wyatt Thompson (COM) pinned Nic Ryan (Char), 4:24.
126 — Devin Harberts (Char) dec. Gage Cheers (COM), 8-3.
132 — Tanner Poush (Char) dec. Joey Huntington (COM), 10-4.
138 — Tyler Nance (Char) major dec. Zack Peppmeier (COM), 13-5.
145 — Jacob Johnston (COM) pinned Stephen McCurdy (Char), 2:34.
152 — Jake Marlin (COM) pinned Connor Grgurich (Char), 3:32.