By Cameron Deckman
Another wrestling season is approaching fast. It’ll be hard to top last year. However ,with the help of some new and returning athletes it looks like the team could be even better this year.
Second-year head coach Cody LeCount is confident going into this season. LeCount has taken steps in the preseason to prepare his athletes for this year. He expects athletes to come to practice to get better, continue to get better, compete for the postseason, and trust the process.
Even after last season, LeCount is not concerned about any other school’s wrestling programs.
“I’m the type of coach that if you ask me it doesn’t matter if it’s a team we beat by 50 or lost by 50 last year, I (prepare like) we are going to lose every dual,” he said.
With that mentality, he wants his athletes to not underestimate the opponents or overestimate the opponents.
Last year the team had four state qualifiers, Neal Mosier, Dillon Tuttle, Ayden Bollinger, and Braxton Russell. The athletes who placed were Mosier, a junior who got sixth, and Tuttle, who got eighth. Tuttle graduated last spring.
Currently, Mosier is predicted to place fifth, but he believes he can go even higher. His goal is to get to at least fourth in state. He wants to start off good, and he feels really confident.
His father Joe Mosier is a big inspiration to Neal. The reason for this is because his dad was an excellent wrestler, and he wants to be like him.
Recently, Bollinger, a sophomore, placed second in a national tournament. With the season just around the corner this is a good sign for what’s to come. Last year he got eighth in the same tournament, so he is feeling confident going into this season. He hopes he can win a match in the state finals and get on the podium.
This season has brought many new athletes, one of them being junior Ryder Turner. He decided to come back to wrestling after a one-year stint on the wrestling team in eighth grade.
“I’ve heard LeCount is a great coach, so I wanted to see how he can improve my technique in a short amount of time,” Turner said.
Most people would be nervous about coming back, but he just doesn’t want to let himself down.
Turner left wrestling because he didn’t know if he wanted to wrestle, lift, or play football. After thinking about it he chose football.
There’s been talk about a new freshman wrestler this year. Kaid Jackson has been doing wrestling for 10 years. Jackson, who transferred to Delta from Yorktown during the summer, joined the wrestling team in summer tournaments. He is now getting ready for a run to state for Delta.
He said the main difference between Delta and Yorktown for him is that people around him want to get better. He will have to go against former teammates that he used to wrestle in practice. Now he will face them in an actual match.
While most wrestlers have many years under their belt, freshman Austin Smith is trying it for the first time.
“It seemed interesting, and my friends wanted me to do it,” Smith said.
Smith wants to not come out too negative in the win-loss column, and he believes that he can go to sectionals.
The first meet is going to be on Nov. 19. It is the Rex Leavitt Invite at Elwood High School. They are expected to see some great competition to start off the season.
With the season almost underway, the team is looking to start off strong and place first at their first meet. They hope they can meet the coach’s expectations, and make it to state for the second year in a row.