After twice beating back coronavirus interruptions to their season, the Seymour High School wrestling team competed for the first time since Dec. 12 on Tuesday night.
The Owls recorded their finest performance of the season and squeezed Senior Night into the performance, too, in defeating visiting West Washington 43-21 in the Lloyd E. Scott Gymnasium.
“I’m glad,” said sophomore Alex Schlatterer, who won his match by pin over the Senators’ Travis Hamilton. “I’m very grateful.”
To illustrate how close the Owls came to not having this match, either, West Washington was not the original opponent. That was Columbus North. But it’s easy come, easy going with sports schedules during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Coach Adam Wolka scrounged up a substitute opponent to fill in and hurriedly tied Senior Night to the event. That also was postponed once this season.
“We wanted to get it in,” Wolka said of seizing the moment.
Brody Shipley, Celeste Huddleston and Kylee Nowling were the seniors honored. Fans unable to attend missed their moment as well as the solid Owls showing.
Shipley was one of the grapplers who added a moment to remember to the odd senior year virus developments he would just as soon forget. Shipley won by pin at 220 pounds. He said he sized up his foe and realized he could take him.
That is not unusual, he said, once a wrestler gains experience “usually, you can tell within the first 10 seconds” just where the foe stands in his capabilities.
This was an opportunity to take advantage of, Shipley said, after so many missed competitions and lost practices.
“I’ve been quarantined twice,” he said. “But I’m sure it’s like that for everyone.”
Following through with a scheduled match is out of the hands of the athletes, so they mostly focus on getting ready for what is written on paper and hope it becomes reality.
“No matter what, you should be prepared,” Schlatterer said. “Match or no match. Wrestling being so mental, it helps each other out being ready.”
Lalo Buster, wrestling at 170, was another Owl who pulled out a pin, though he might have been edgier than usual as a sophomore with limited experience who has had as much time off as action this season.
“I got way nervous,” Buster said. “I was happy to get a match in.”
Especially a home one, said 120-pounder Ed Ramirez, although it felt odd to win a match by forfeit. When the weight class was called, he trotted out to the middle of the mat and raised his arm in the air.
“I just stood there,” Ramirez said. “It feels like all eyes are looking at you. But we don’t have that many home matches. I had fun.”
Seymour 43, West Washington 21
113: Rolando Baltazar (S) win 16-5 over Mason Jones (WW)
120: Ed Ramirez (S) win by forfeit
126: Kylee Nowling (S) win by forfeit
132: Sam Castetter (S) lose 8-6 to Wyatt Johnson (WW)
138: Ben Kriete (S) win 5-0 over Alex Neece (WW)
145: Celeste Huddleston (S) lose by pin to Evan Willis (WW)
152: Alex Schlatterer (S) win by pin over Travis Hamilton (WW)
160: Colin Hankins lose by pin to Sheven Griffith (WW)
170: Lalo Buster (S) win by pin over Allen Overough (WW)
182: Hector Ruiz-Rosa (S) win by pin over Cannon Roop (WW)
220: Brody Shipley (S) win by pin over Landon Pearson (WW)