With basketball taking the main stage on the home gym floors, the iconic Discoverer mat for home gym wrestling hasn’t been rolled out yet due to the Discoverer wrestlers heading to away events. However, they will only roll the mats out three times this season as they will be hosting a triangular and two home duals. Along with the shortage of home events, COVID-19 guidelines will restrict the number of fans in the stands. This does take away a big aspect of the atmosphere of Columbus Discoverer Wrestling as the fans and the student section stands are typically packed to the wall. Despite the new precautions, Columbus wrestling has seen its fair share of triumphs so far this year, going 4-1 in dual action.
For the JV team, there may be fewer competitions, but the work ethic at practice has been higher than ever. They are a hard working group that have done really well for only having a few matches at the GI duel. Some JV wrestlers do move up to varsity; one to note is Sophomore Cody Cuba who took the bronze at 170lbs at the Bennington Invite (more later).
The season started with the usual opener opponents for Columbus, the Grand Island Islanders. For this duel, Columbus left open slots at the heavyweight (285) and 138-pound weight classes and didn’t have a few key wrestlers: Seniors Alex Korte and Tanner Kobza and Junior Riley Iburg. Columbus opened the match with four straight pins, all in the second period. They were all from Freshman Kasen Grape, Junior Levi Bloomquist, Senior Blayze Standley, and Sophomore Liam Blaser. Most notable of the four was Bloomquist’s match after he found his way to work with Islander Kobly Lukasiewicz after being in a 12-point deficit. The Islanders' first points came from Anthony Navarro as he came back and won by one over Senior Justin Gaston. The other two Columbus victories came from a pin by Freshman Brenyn Delano and Junior Blake Cerny getting a victory over an opponent who he lost to at state. Grand Island scored in the remaining rounds, however, keeping up their decade-long opener victory streak alive with a score of 43-33.
The next event was the Bennington Invite. Overall, Columbus scored bronze in team placement with 117 points thanks to two champions, two runners-up, and three third placers. Columbus was also missing the trio of wrestlers that were absent at the GI dual along with Blaser. Columbus’ two champions were Cerny at 113 pounds, and Sophomore Adrain Bice at 120 pounds. Both secured their victory by pinning their opponents, Cerny midway through the second period and Bice in just under a minute. Columbus’ runner ups, Bloomquist and Standley, both lost to Elkhorn South opponents, Bloomquist by a major decision and Standley by points at 7-2 loss. One bronze medalist was Delano at 106 pounds despite starting on the wrong side of a 3-2 score in his opening match. He was able to advance through a forfeit victory but suffered a pin with 45 seconds left in his final match. Another bronze medalist was Gaston in the 195-pound weight class. Gaston started with being pinned in the first period of the first match but came back with two pins in the second and third periods of the proceeding match. The most notable of the bronze medalists was Cuba. In his first-ever varsity tournament, Cuba won all of his preliminary matches by pinfall before being pinned in his semifinal match.
The most recent event the wrestlers faced so far was a Creighton Prep Quadangular in Omaha. This event replaced the Nebraska Duals that occurred at the Central Community College. This event also confirmed that Kobza’s wrestling career has ended due to a concussion and Blaser is currently recovering from an injury. Columbus was able to outscore each of their opponents, taking home gold in the event. The two Discoverer wrestlers that went 3-0 throughout the quad were Sophomore Caydn Kucera with two major decisions and one pin and Cerny pinning all three of his opponents. Standley went 2-1 with winning a major decision and one at a 9-2 decision. Sophomore Eric Slusarski went 2-1 with a major decision and accepted a forfeit. Korte, Bloomquist, Gaston, and Delano all went 2-1 with accepting a forfeit and pinning one. Wrestlers who only won one match were Cuba and Senior Drew Loosvelt with a pin and Iburg and Cuba accepting a forfeit.
The Discoverers won’t see home action until hosting a triangular with the Hastings Tigers and the Millard South Patriots on December 29th and won’t go under their own spotlight in duel action until the January 7th against the Plattsmouth Blue Devils. To catch the Anchor News recap on these events, be sure to follow CHS Anchor News on Twitter and Instagram and check out our Fusfoo page. I’m Libby Wurdeman. CHS Anchor News.