MAIZE—In their last matchup before regionals, the Maize High School wrestlers hosted Campus on Thursday, Feb. 7, and lost 38-33.
The Eagles led 33-20 after the 182-pound match, but they had open weights at 195, 220 and 285. Forfeiting the matches cost them the dual, but Maize coach Mike Schauer has said his team wasn’t emphasizing dual wins this year.
“Everybody’s excited about what could be,” said Schauer.
Maize freshman Brett Moon is ranked No. 2 among 126-pound wrestlers in Class 6A, according to the Kansas Wrestling Coaches Association. Freshman teammate Landon Wood is the No. 6-ranked wrestler at 106 pounds in 6A.
Wood started Maize on a positive note Thursday, when he decisioned Campus freshman Greg Bentley 6-2. Campus picked up the next two victories, a major decision and pin, to take a 10-3 overall lead.
Moon stopped the streak when he pinned Campus sophomore Brandon Dawson in the second period. That left the Eagles trailing by a point, 10-9, and then Maize junior Fernando Nuno decisioned freshman Kevin Reist 5-2 in the 132-pound contest. As a result, Maize led 12-10 and kept its advantage until forfeiting the last matches.
Even the competition among the Eagles is intense this season. Schauer said freshman Shane Brock lost in overtime to Nuno in a bout for the varsity spot at 132 pounds.
Schauer described Brock as “one of the most talented wrestlers in the state,” and he said the 138-pound Alex Hydock was “fantastic.”
“That freshman class is really something else,” Schauer added.
Maize will travel to Hutchinson for its Class 6A regional Feb. 16. Although nerves are often a problem for young, inexperienced teams at postseason tournaments, Schauer said Wood and Moon were prepared for the pressure.
“They’ve wrestled their whole life,” the coach continued, “so they’ve been in big matches already.”