Wrestlers look to get up off mat
by Mike Slodki
Kaneland is looking at their share of individual accomplishment, but also looks to get past some tough losses as the calendar turns to 2009.
Kaneland lost on Friday in dual action to Western Sun Conference rival Dekalb, 48-18.
The Knights also competed at the annual Sycamore tournament on Saturday, finishing 13th out of 16 teams.
However, the Knights rebounded on Tuesday night after a 41-27 loss to Batavia with a 33-30 win over Morris.
Kaneland’s head-to-head mark is 9-16.
At the Sycamore tournament, the Knight grapplers garnered 49.5 points, beating out McHenry by five points. Lockport (243.5), Hononegah (205.5) and Grant (177.5) finished in the top three.
Kaneland had a few individual places to be proud of at the home of the Spartans.
At 119 pounds, Josh Kuefler finished in seventh place. After losing a 4-2 decision to Crystal Lake South’s Tom Gerszewski, he came back after a bye and defeated Rock Island’s Darius Henderson 10-4. After losing the consolation semi, Kuefler pinned Cary-Grove’s Corey Meyer in 5:25 to nab seventh.
125-pounder Devon Scholl finished in fourth thanks to a 3-0 decision over Crystal Lake South’s D.J. Nee, and a 15-6 major decision over Harlem’s Jake Papke. Scholl dropped a 4-3 heartbreaker to Sycamore’s Jeff Flanigan in the third place match.
Jay Levita, at 145 pounds, finished fourth, with a 23-14 major decision over York’s Matt Williams and an 18-2 techinical fall over Downers Grove South’s Jeff Idle.
Jimmy Boyle, at 145 pounds, also took fourth, with wins over Rock Island’s Travis Blecher in 2:34 and a 3-1 win over Sycamore’s Luke Sgarlata.
Scholl, Cody McGinnis, AJ Wagner and Boyle came away with wins over the Bulldogs.
Levita had a pinfall after tussling on the ground with his opponent; the referee imploring some grappling action.
â€œI usually try to be the first guy to do something on the mat, and I just tried a move and it worked and I got the pin,â€ Levita said.
Levita feels this yearâ€™s corps of varsity vets can lead by example.
â€œ We can definitely lead. The guys on varsity last year did that for us, and we can show how to be aggressive,â€ Levita said.
The JV crew lost 34-21 to Batavia on Thursday.
Kaneland gears up for more challenges on Thursday, Jan. 15 against visiting Batavia and hosts the the Margaret Flott Memorial Wrestling Invitational on Saturday, Jan. 17.