Clarkson/Leigh Wrestling 2018-19: Small but mighty
The Clarkson/Leigh wrestling program is in its third year. While the numbers are still small for the team with just six wrestlers, the Patriots are looking to make some noise and build up their program.
Last year, Clarkson/Leigh had two wrestlers qualify for the state tournament - Derek Gurnsey and Tim Zimmerman, but both wrestlers were seniors leaving little experience in the group.
“We don’t have a lot of numbers yet,” said head coach Tyler Reeves. “We’re still building. Our most experienced kid, this will be his third year wrestling. I think we’re getting better. We’re kind of scattered in weight classes this year, which will be interesting. I’m hoping we get a couple more kids to state this year. Last year we had two, we only took four to districts.”
One wrestler that the Patriots believe will have success this season is the lone senior on the team, John Langhorst, who just slightly missed out on going to Omaha last season.
“John Langhorst, our senior, made blood round last year at a weight class that he shouldn’t have even been at,” Reeves said. “I think he has a good shot this year. He’s gotten stronger. He’s still at the same weigh class, so I think he has a good shot.”
Another wrestler that Clarkson/Leigh is hoping generates wins is freshman Brock Marxsen, the team’s 106-pounder.
“That should play out okay in class D,” Reeves said. “There’s not a lot of 106-pounders so hopefully he can battle and find a way to get there.”
Colby Harney has also made the blood round twice, and Reeves said that if they can get him to a good weight class, Harney can make a run and possibly find himself in Omaha.
That trio, plus the rest of the team, will be looking to stay aggressive and force the action.
“We want to stay offensive, take people down. We want to score points,” Reeves said. “We’re just going to go after people and score points and whatever happens in the end, whether we win or we lose, we’re just going to try to score points.”
While the program is still small, Reeves is optimistic about the future of the Clarkson/Leigh wrestling program.
He said that despite only having six athletes on the high school team, there are 14 wrestlers coming up through the program at the younger level. Very soon, the program could have a very different look.
“We’re still small and we’re still building and we’re just trying to build a foundation for the next couple years,” Reeves said. “We’ve got a lot of our club kids coming up and our numbers will jump a lot and their experience level will jump a lot so I’m looking forward to the next few years.”
Peter Huguenin is a sports reporter for The Schuyler Sun. Reach him via email at SCHsports@lee.net