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RHS wrestlers build 'from ground up' in new season

Dec 5, 2013 - By Bruce Tippets, Sports Editor

Coach Jay Galey has installed a new motto this year for the Riverton Wolverines: Get better every day in wrestling practice.

After almost three weeks of working on different techniques, the Wolverines are making strides each day in different areas.

RHS starts the wrestling season Friday at the Evanston Invitational.

The tournament is a double-elimination bracket and has a varsity, junior varsity and freshman division.

"We are pretty young," Galey said. "I like what our young guys have done. I think that they have showed some toughness."

The Wolverines graduated a number of key wrestlers last year from a very successful team.

RHS placed third at the state tournament in Casper and were second in the Class 4-A regional tournament in Riverton.

"We had to slow things down and start from the ground up," Galey said. "Along with that, we have a few older guys who are tough."

Riverton's first day of practice was Nov. 18.

"We go test ourselves a little bit this weekend in Evanston," Galey said. "I think that it will be interesting to see how they respond."

The season ends Feb. 28-March 1 at the Casper Events Center.

"By the end of the year, I think that we will be pretty tough," Galey said.

Injury bug

"The unfortunate part about some of our older kids right now is that they are hurt," Galey said. "It's going to create some holes for us right off the bat. Until we get our older kids healthy, we are going to have some ground make up."

The upperclassmen banged up right now are T.J. Turner, Gavin Wilson, Hank Osborne and Tyler Allen.

"They are certainly part of our core," Galey said.

Allen will be in the lineup this weekend in Evanston.

Kyle Page is scheduled to be out until January for the Wolverines.

The injuries are anywhere from ankles, elbows and shoulders.

"The injuries have just killed us," Galey said.

Positives

Galey has liked the way Reece Prosser has wrestled in the early stages of the preseason. Prosser will be in the 182-pound weight class.

Michael Menzies is slated to be at 126 pounds.

Austin Locker is at 138 pounds.

Chris Holcomb came on strong late last year for the Wolverines at 190.

"Hopefully, he can build off that," Galey said.

Joey Ladd is going to be at 113 pounds in the varsity division for Evanston,

Schedule

The Evanston tournament will consist of 27 teams in a two-day event.

Only 15 of the 27 teams are from Wyoming. There will be teams from Nevada, Utah, Idaho and Colorado in all weight classes.

After the Evanston Invitational, the Wolverines wrestle Casper Kelly Walsh on Thursday, Dec. 12, in Casper.

Part of the team competes in a dual tournament in Shoshoni on Friday, Dec. 13, and Saturday, Dec. 14, with the rest competing the same days in a bracket tournament in Rapid City, S.D.

"That will be a tough weekend for all of us," Galey said.

RHS splits up its team again on Friday, Dec. 20, and Saturday, Dec. 21 for the Battle of the Big Horn tournament in Worland.

The other wrestlers will attend a Class 2-A Wright tournament.

"They will be seeing some varsity kids, which will be good for them," Galey said.

The first home match is Thursday, Jan. 2, with Casper Natrona.

Coaching staff

Galey is assisted this year by Talon Yates, Matt Coughanor, Trevor Allen and Brandon Giddings.

"We have a good crew," Galey said. "We are going to have a lot of fun with these guys. We are going to work them hard. Hopefully, we will see some improvement along the way. By the end of the year we will let the cards play themselves out."

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