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By Braidon Reysack, Williamsburg sophomore
WILLIAMSBURG – No one expected the Williamsburg wrestling team to be good last year, but the Raiders sent six wrestlers to the state tournament.
JC Vercande, Trevor Knepper, Dylan Blythe, Corbin Blythe, Spencer Dale and Aaron Schultz all competed in Des Moines, with Vercande ending his season with a state title in the 145-pound weight class. Williamsburg Coach Grant Eckenrod earned a coach of the year award and the Raiders had their second-best meet record ever 21-3.
This year, Williamsburg has 35 athletes out for wrestling. Practice started Monday for most, but Eckenrod said Thursday is the first day for all the football players, giving them a small break before wrestling starts.
The wrestling team looks to have an even better 2012-13 with a lot of juniors returning and many more new wrestlers from all grades. Instead of having wrestlers piled up a certain weights, this year’s lineup appears to be more spread out.
Although Vercande and Knepper have graduated, Williamsburg has many great and strong wrestlers to fill their places. The team hopes to go through the season with clear minds, determination and one goal – to win the state title.