I was excited for the guys to compete at the Southern Scuffle. It is a tough two day tournament with over 30 NCAA Division 1 teams. Many weight classes are loaded with ranked wrestlers. It is a fun atmosphere for them to compete – big arena with thousands of spectators.
Being a post-Christmas tournament, making weight is usually a difficult task. We brought 15 wrestlers who all made weight. We spent New Year’s Eve on a bus and guys worked hard cutting weight for the New Year’s Day competition.
Overall, we did not perform well at the competition. I am unsure why, but I am sure the travel, weight cut, stress of high level competition, played a factor for some. We had 11 guys go 0-2. It was frustrating to watch the losses pile up. We lost 10 matches by 2 points or less. My big concern is that the guy’s will accept losing as what they deserve. I don’t want it to be acceptable to them. I don’t want it to be contagious. They are better than they showed. They work way too hard to not give their best effort in competition. Many of them can be competitive at this tournament. It was a frustrating day. I implore them to learn from the competition. I want them to grow as a result of competing at the Southern Scuffle.
We did have 4 guys win matches. Zach Isenhour finished 1-2. Konbeh Koroma went 2-2. Greg Flournoy finished 3-2. Jake Kettler finished 5-3. Jake had 2 pins, including a pin over a ranked opponent. Jake finished in 8th place.
We departed the arena around 9:30pm on January 2nd. Fortunately, we were on a nice bus, so we were able to relax on the 9+ hour ride home. We played a few games of Mafia and watched some movies. I am unsure how many movies, because I slept for quite a while.
On January 10 at 1pm we host Cleveland State University in our first conference dual of the season. The guys are training hard to prepare for the dual. I hope to see you at the RAC on Saturday.
We are going to honor Gene Frogale, the Patriot Elite Wrestling Club and Dan and Patty Wotring during half-time of the dual. Because of them, we have 3 named scholarships for wrestling student-athletes at George Mason University.