ROUNDING INTO FORM
Jaguars earn silver; Bethel honored, Fisher working his way back
The Southeast Valley wrestling team was looking to repeat as the St. Edmond Duals champions on Saturday, but the Jaguars weren’t quite able to repeat the feat.
SV did, however, bring home wrestler of the meet honors while welcoming a big piece back to the puzzle.
Southeast Valley finished 3-1, losing only to champion West Hancock (4-0), 39-27. The Jaguars had wins over St. Edmond (81-0), AGWSR (66-16) and Roland-Story (64-18).
“We talked about how we wanted to bring back the team title,” said Jaguar head coach Jeff Miller. “We wrestled well, but West Hancock has a really good team.”
Coledon Bethel, the Jaguars 113-pounder, was named the wrestler of the meet after going 4-0 on the day.
“(Bethel) started at 120 this season, but got down to 113,” Miller said. “He is a quiet leader who works his butt off.”
Bethel earned falls over West Hancock’s Nathan Cabrera (2:50), AGWSR’s Zach Johnson (57 seconds), a major decision over Joe Hovick of Roland-Story (11-2), and a decision over St. Edmond’s Ryan Duckett (10-3) in the finals.
“It feels pretty good (to earn wrestler of the meet honors),” Bethel said. “I felt (in rhythm) all day. I felt strong and had lots of energy.”
With this meet under his belt, Bethel is focused on the long haul.
“I just want to wrestle hard,” Bethel said. “The goals are to win conference and be a state place finisher.”
Miller saw five of his wrestlers go undefeated, including two-time state runner-up Kyler Fisher, who was making his tourney debut.
“It was nice to get him back and on the mat,” Miller said of Fisher, who will be a prefered walk-on for the Iowa football team after graduation. “He just needs mat time to get back to normal.”
The second-ranked 195 pounder was recovering from a knee injury he suffered on the first play of Southeast Valley’s quarterfinal football game.
“I’ve never had an injury like this before, so it was a tough thing to go through,” Fisher said. “It happened on the opening kickoff (of the quarterfinals).
“It’s been hard on me mentally, but once I worked through it, I actually gained more confidence.”
Fisher recovered from the injury and earned three victories on Thursday before Saturday’s performance.
“Since I’m planning on playing football at Iowa, I wasn’t going to rush through it,” Fisher said. “But then I started getting hungry. I needed to be out there.”
On Saturday, Fisher recoreded a fall, a major decision and two forfeit victories for the Jaguars.
“I feel like I did well. I’m getting better,” Fisher said. “I just need some more mat time and to get my conditioning up.”
Fisher is now 144-17 in his career, and is six wins from becoing the SV’s all-time leader. Trey Lawrence is the current leader at 149-50.
Rylie Ferrari (132), Xavier Nichols (220) and Clayton McFarland (285) were also unbeaten for the Jaguars. Ferrari had a fall, major and two forfeit wins. Nichols had a fall and three forfeits, while McFarland had a fall, decision and two forfeits.
Mason Goodwin (120), Sam Hemmestad (126), Max Miller (138), Zack Miller (160), Carter Fluckiger (170) and Alex Pudenz (182) all went 3-1 on the day for SV.