Comet wrestling go 2-1 at season-opening ‘triple dual’
By John Burbridge
DENVER — Veteran wrestling coach Dave Williams coached the Charles City Comets to more than 200 dual-meet victories during his previous 19-year tenure.
He said that the first 100 victories came a lot faster than the latter 100.
Now back to leading the Comets after a short retirement, Williams quickly added two more dual-meet wins during a “triple-dual” season-opener, Thursday hosted by Denver.
In their first two varsity duals of the evening, the Comets rolled in one-sided consecutive victories over Waterloo Columbus (68-10) and Dike-New Hartford (71-6).
Finishing the night against the hosting Cyclones which placed second and third, respectively, in Class 1A in State Team Duals and State Traditional Tournament last season, the Comets were stymied with five straight fall defeats but still produced some inspiring efforts before losing 40-33.
Four Comets went 3-0 during the night — junior 145-pounder Rousch Jaeger, senior 170-pounder Eliott Sinnwell, junior 182-pounder Cade Collins and sophomore 195-pounder Tino Tamayo.
Tamayo initially caught the attention of Denver Athletic Complex spectators with his back handsprings and extended and mobile handstands during warm-ups, but perhaps best displayed his athleticism and agility in his match against Denver’s Luke Koepke.
After starting the varsity meet with a 7-1 decision over Columbus’s Aidan Schmitz and then following up with a major victory (12-3) over DNH’s Joe Folkerts, Tamayo found himself in a tight match against Koepke before he exploded from the down position to start the second period then quickly turned back to take down Folkerts and pin him 11 seconds into the period.
Jaeger had a technical fall (18-2, 2:38) win over WC’s Caden Hartz and a major victory (19-9) over DNH’s Nick Reinicke, before pinning Denver’s Ben Foelske at the 3:59 mark after Foelske had a 9-6 lead.
Sinnwell recorded a pair of falls against WC’s Alex Buser (2:12) and DNH’s Cayden Buskohl (:32) before out-battling Denver’s John Ebaugh in a 7-5 decision.
Collins had a fall victory of WC’s Ray Seidel (2:56), a major decision (18-7) over DNH’s Aldan Walters, and 7-3 decision over Denver’s Beau Bonnette.
Charles City 2018 state qualifier Jack Sindlinger and sophomore heavyweight Chase Crooks both were 2-0.
In the 220-pound weight class, Sindlinger recorded a technical fall (18-1, 2:52) against DNH’s Zach Starbuck and later pinned Denver’s Henry Wiebbecke with 10 seconds remain in the first period.
Crooks had the fastest pin of the night when he took down WC’s Joel Walter in 21 seconds. It took Crooks a little longer (5:23) in his subsequent fall victory over DNH’s Jacob Loehr.
Other Comets recording victories during the night were returning junior state qualifier Alec Staudt while wrestling as a 138-pounder, senior 132-pounder Bronson Forsyth, freshman 126-pounder Nathan Lopenz, and sophomore 106-pounder Jacob Vais, who came from behind to defeat Denver’s Rhett Bonnette with a 3-point near-fall in the final seconds to break an 8-8 tie.
Comet sophomore 145-pounder Colton Crooks, who recorded a victory during the dual against DNH, almost pulled off the most stunning come-from-behind victory of the night.
Bruised, bloodied and down 14-0 against Denver’s Brody Shover going into the third period, Crooks was a takedown away from suffering a technical fall as the wrestlers started the period from the stand-up position. But it was Crooks who recorded the takedown, and in the final 40 seconds managed to put Shover in the nearest of near-fall predicaments.
But Crooks didn’t get the slap from the ref as Shover hung on to preserve the victory.