|Written by Brian Bergner|
|Thursday, 17 November 2011 00:00|
The Camp Verde High School wrestling team begins the 2011-2012 season looking to reach its goals of not only winning a sectional title, but a state championship as well.
Head Coach Bob Weir believes this year’s Cowboys team could be strong enough and deep enough to do it, but reaching the aforementioned goals will take hard work.
“We’ve got some good kids. We’ll have over 30 wrestlers on the mat this season now that football is over,” Weir said.
The beginning of the regular season is coming rather quickly with the first seven-way meet set for Tuesday, Nov. 22, in Camp Verde.
Joseph City, Parker, Canyon State, Benson, Wickenburg and Flagstaff high schools will be in attendance next week, with the Cowboys looking to top all of them.
The schedule is brutal this season for the Cowboys, according to Weir. Camp Verde is set to wrestle at the Arizona State University Blackford Tournament over Christmas break, and the boys will be at the Payson Invitational during the middle of January.
“The schedule this year is tough, but we have high expectations,” Weir said.
Top returners for this year’s squad include two solid seniors in Michael Casillas and Derek Brown. Casillas finished sixth overall at state his junior year in the 106-pound division and will be looking for a state title this winter. As for Brown, he was third overall at 145 pounds in 2010-2011.
Camp Verde has a solid junior core of grapplers returning as well beginning with Heath Carroll who returns at 138 pounds after taking fourth overall in the Division IV State Championships last winter.
Junior Joel Lobaugh returns along with junior teammate Alex Anzar. Both Lobaugh and Anzar’s weight classification is yet to be determined, but the two should wrestle
anywhere between 145 and 160 pounds.
Junior Anthony McBeth returns to grapple at 220 pounds while junior Elmer Ruiz is set at 190 pounds.
In the sophomore class, 113-pound Isaiah McReynolds returns along with 145-pound Chance Weir.
Top newcomers for the Cowboys this season include senior Jacob Dodge at 126 pounds, and a pair of freshmen in Ryan Alred and Jeremiah Crespo. Alred should wrestle at 119 pounds, according to Weir. Alred was a three-time state title holder in middle school.
“We have a good coaching staff this year and again, our goal is to win a state title. This should be a good year,” Bob Weir said.
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