MASON CITY — Sometimes in wrestling, early-season matches can be kind of a mystery.
Teams have guys cutting down weight and just have a mix of kids all over the place as they play around with lineups early on.
The way North Butler-Clarksville and Nashua-Plainfield have started has them feeling pretty good, and that was highlighted by strong showings by each Thursday night in a quadrangular at Newman Catholic. The Bearcats were 2-1 while the Huskies were 1-2, which included a tight loss to Crestwood. Both know there’s a lot of work still to be done, though.
North Butler had wins over N-P (50-30) and Newman (39-28) and fell to Crestwood 46-27. N-P defeated Newman Catholic 51-24 and fell to Crestwood in its other match 38-36.
“It looked good for the first time out,” North Butler coach Gordy Smith said. “We were a little rusty and things didn’t look like exactly what we wanted them to be, but I’m proud of them.”
Bryce Trees, Teryn Joebgen, Brandon Trees, Noah Doty and Engel were each 3-0 on the evening for the Bearcats.
Bryce Trees, who’s ranked sixth at 113, had one scare on the night as he scored a 9-6 decision over N-P’s Jakob Whitinger. Brandon Trees, who is sixth at 170, took care of business with two pins and a hard-fought 7-3 decision over Newman’s Chase McCleish.
N-P’s side of the quad saw a Huskies team which fought throughout the night, but still walked out 1-2. Coach Al Frost is confident they’ll come around eventually with a young roster.
“We’ve got a lot of freshmen and sophomores in the lineup yet and they’ve got a long ways to go, but they’re going to come around,” Frost said. “We were 12-16 last year and I think this year we’re looking for a .500 record.
"We’ve got three tough seniors, but I think the next couple of years we’re going to be very competitive and we could be looking at our goal of being in the (state) duals again).”
Brock Dietz, Shane Hillesheim, Tristen Brasse and Nathan Dettmer were each undefeated for the Huskies on the night.
For Newman, which was 0-3 on the night, it wasn’t all bad. In fact, coach Mark Bertsch liked a lot of what he saw across the lineup. Open weights were the killer, though. Newman’s other loss came 66-9 to Crestwood.
“We were really impressed,” Bertsch said. “We fought well against North Butler. Look at how many points we gave them (two forfeits) and we went with them. What’s really impressive is we had some tough matches against some tough kids. This is a long race.”