The West Delaware wrestling team and cheerleaders wrapped up their season’s on Tuesday night with the annual awards banquet inside the Hanson Auditorium. The Hawks’ impressive season was capped off in February with a 20-2 dual meet record winning the class 2A state dual tournament, then three days later they claimed the class 2A individual tournament title. The Hawks only two dual losses on the year came to the eventual class 3A dual team runner-up Waverly-Shell Rock in the season opener and in the Battle of Waterloo, one of only two tournaments they did not finish in first place as a team as they finished second behind the Go-Hawks. The other runner-up finish for the Hawks came at the Jerry Eckenrod Bobcat Invitational which featured over 50 ranked wrestlers, which the Hawks finished second to the class 1A dual and individual team champions Don Bosco. In the state duals the Hawks had wins over Sergeant Bluff-Luton, Crestwood, and WaMaC foe Solon as they outscored their opponents 154-60 in those three duals. In the traditional tournament they scored 76.5 points which was 13 points better than runner-up Spirit Lake Park as the Hawks became the second team to ever win a state title without having a finalist, and the first team to ever win without having a wrestler place in the top three. The Hawks had eight state qualifiers with seven of those bringing home medals as senior Ryan Phillips finished in 4th, freshman Jadyn Peyton was 4th, sophomore Cael Meyer finished 8th, senior Mitchel Mangold was 5th, freshman Wyatt Voelker finished in 4th place, junior Jack Neuhaus was 8th, senior Jordan Bries added two valuable team points and was one win away from placing, and sophomore Carson Petlon finished 5th. West Delaware head coach Jeff Voss and his staff were named the class 2A coaches of the year at this year’s state meet and winning the award was very special to Voss and his staff:
As a team they were awarded the Distinguished Academic Achievement Award by having a combined GPA of 3.48 while seniors Jordan Bries, Mitchel Mangold, Ryan Phillips, Ben Ridenour, Kody Wenger and juniors Luke Farmer, Sam Lyness, Ben Petlon, and Evan Woods all earned Academic All-Conference honors by having a GPA of 3.5 or higher. West Delaware head coach Jeff Voss says the kids not only work hard in the wrestling room but in the classroom as well:
Individual awards were presented at the banquet as well and this year’s Lee Logan Courage award was given to junior Zach Fisher who competed for the Hawks the past two seasons before suffering a spinal injury in September and still supported the team when he was able to attend and was mat side during the Hawks championship run at the state duals. Fisher says it was a great feeling to be given one of the biggest awards of the annual banquet:
Fisher who coach Voss said earlier is working just as hard as the team in getting better each day and living by one of the team’s values in “I will never give up” says to be mat side watching the team accomplish their goals was pretty special:
The John and Dorothy Sill most improved award went to junior Ben Petlon who went from a 5-6 varsity record in his sophomore campaign to a 26-16 record this season and qualified for the district tournament, and the Rob Hatfield coaches award went to senior Daniel Woods. This year’s captains were also awarded to seniors Mitchel Mangold, Ryan Phillips, and Kody Wenger.
The Jeremy Shover Guts Club Awards was given out to wrestlers who attended every practice both mandatory and optional practices, and this season there were a record 27 wrestlers who accomplished this feat as they are Kyle Cole, Blake Engel, Conner Funk, Isaac Fettkether, Jadyn Peyton, T.J. Soppe, Wyatt Voelker, Reily Dolan, Staveley Maury, Cael Meyer, Kieran Monaghan, Christian Nunley, Carson Petlon, Ethan Proper, Tyger Vaske, Jared Voss, Luke Farmer, Sam Lyness, Jack Neuhaus, Ben Petlon, Evan Woods, Daniel Woods, Mitchel Mangold, Ryan Phillips, Ben Ridenour, Kody Wenger, and Jordan Bries. This year’s senior class saw the highs and lows of wrestling as the team was 6-18 in dual meets their freshmen season and were able to see the fruits of their labor pay off with two state titles which is only the second time in school history. Coach Voss says this group has persevered and is proud of the leadership they showed throughout their time in high school:
The wrestling cheerleaders were awarded the Excellence in Academic Achievement award with a team GPA of 3.24 and Isabelle Willey was an Academic All-Conference recipient. Individual awards were presented to Abbie Placke for most spirited, most improved was given to Carla Gomez. The coaches award went to Becca Farmer, the leadership award was presented to Karsyn Welcher, and the big sister little sister was awarded to Abbie Placke and Alexis MacTaggart.
Photos Courtesy of Janette Voss: