Polar Bears win regional tournament
11 Hortonville wrestlers advance to sectionals
By Scott Bellile
The Hortonville wrestling team brought to an end a 23-year regional winning streak for Wisconsin Rapids by winning the Division 1 Regional on Saturday, Feb. 13.
Regional champ Hortonville advanced 11 boys to the individuals sectional tournament scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 20, at 10 a.m. at Ashwaubenon High School.
Hortonville’s individuals moving on are Eric Barnett (106), Bryce Gerner (113), Colin Schuler (120), Jacob Barnett (126), Curtis Diedrich (132), Nathan Lichtfuss (138), Joe Cliver (152), Brad Conger (160), Elliott Luker (170), Jack Huebner (220) and Jacob Stein (285). Seven of the 11 sectional qualifiers won their weight divisions.
“Beating Rapids was a great feeling, big accomplishment—they won every regional since 1993 and all but 10 since 1960,” Hortonville coach Chris Gennrich said. “I was very happy for our kids. However, I know they have bigger goals and have put this behind them. They want more and do not want the team portion of the season to end.”
If any boys place in the top two in their weight division at Ashwaubenon, they will advance to the state tournament at UW-Madison’s Kohl Center Feb. 25-27. And if Hortonville won Tuesday’s team sectional, the team will compete at the State Team Tournament March 4-5 at the UW-Madison Fieldhouse.
Others in the Fox Valley Association have taken notice of Gennrich’s coaching. Through a coaches’ vote, the FVA named him the 2016 FVA Coach of the Year.
“Since it is voted on by the other coaches in the conference, your peers, it makes you feel proud that they recognize you,” Gennrich said. “However, it really is an award for the wrestlers. They do all the hard work in practice and win the matches to make a season a success. So I am very thankful to my wrestlers and to Coach [Ted] Skebba and Coach[Tony] Schaaf.”
106: Eric Barnett (38-2) placed first (26 team points). 113: Bryce Gerner (9-9) placed third (16 points). 120: Colin Schuler (31-10) placed second (18 points). 126: Jacob Barnett (33-7) placed second (20 points). 132: Curtis Diedrich (33-8) placed first (24 points). 138: Nathan Lichtfuss (33-6) placed first (24 points). 145: Jordan Cheslock (7-2) placed fifth (nine points). 152: Joe Cliver (38-1) placed first (26 points). 160: Brad Conger (25-18) placed second (19 points). 170: Elliott Luker (35-4) placed first (26 points). 182: Griffen Cartwright (11-10) placed fifth (nine points). 195: Nate Bohman (0-3) placed sixth (three points). 220: Jack Huebner (28-9) placed first (24 points). 285: Jacob Stein (27-12) placed first (26 points).