The Eagles boys wrestling team hosted Higginsville for Holden’s Senior Night dual meet with the Huskers recording a hard-fought win by the final score of 36-30 on Wednesday, Jan. 31.
Holden seniors and four-year team members Daylen Greene, CJ Reifsteck, and Andrew Johnston, along with foreign exchange student Gerard Costa were recognized on the mat prior to the night’s competition.
“This is a really special group of guys,” said Holden boys wrestling coach Matt Hertzog who has guided this year’s seniors as head coach for two years, and previously as an assistant coach for the wrestling program. “I have been really blessed to get to coach them and watch them progress these past few years.”
Greene recorded a win by pin over Abe Morris in the 126-pound match.
The team captain and three-time state medalist who finished his junior year campaign with a runner-up finish at the state meet took in the moment of capturing a win in his final home meet as he nears the conclusion of a successful high school career.
“It was a cool experience,” said Greene of the Senior Night atmosphere. “It’s weird thinking you’re going to be here after watching it for all these years, but it was a good night overall. We had a lot of guys wrestle good. We’ve got a good group of seniors.”
Coach Hertzog tipped his cap to Greene who recently recorded the 150th win of his high school career, and who holds the Holden school record for takedowns.
“Daylen has been a foundational leader and varsity scorer on this squad since his freshman year, and has accomplished great things and set some records that I know will stand for years to come,” said coach Hertzog. “I know that no matter what his next steps are that his determination and hard-working attitude will pay off big time.”
The Senior Night dual meet against Higginsville marked the Holden boys wrestling team’s final home dual meet with road meets at Bolivar and Chillicothe remaining at the end of a season schedule that has been weighted heavily with road competitions.
“”It’s been a long season, but just coming down to it, it’s the same as every other season,” said Greene. “It just means a little bit more this season, knowing it’s your last, so you try to stay as focused as you can. It’s just not at home as much. Being on the road is hard, but you get used to it eventually.”
Reifsteck just recently worked his way back into the lineup after missing the first part of the season recovering from a broken bone. Reifsteck returned at the start of this season after qualifying for the state meet during his junior campaign, and he remained with the team during his recovery.
“It’s been great…just trying to get back into shape,” said Reifsteck after the Senior Night meet. “I’ve definitely missed being in the room with the guys. It feels good to be back. I’ve been trying to help out at practice as much as I can…coach the new ones, just trying to stay in there.”
Versus Husker opponent Braxton Ernst, Reifsteck battled in a hard-fought loss by pin in the 175-pound match.
Though taking a setback on the night, Reifsteck remained optimistic after gaining one last chance to wrestle on his home mats with the final stretch of the season approaching.
“I loved it,” said Reifsteck. “It didn’t come out the way I wanted, but it definitely was just nice to be able to wrestle here one more time.”
“CJ is a great kid, a hard worker, and a quiet leader that we will sorely miss next year,” said coach Hertzog. “Helping get him to state last year was such a rewarding experience, and I am hoping that for him and all these seniors we can finish their careers strong.”
Johnston also serves as a team captain, and has contributed in multiple ways in the Eagles lineup throughout his career, notably spending a majority of his junior season wrestling heavier competitors up in the heavyweight class.
Johnston suffered a hard-fought loss by pin in his Senior Night match to Husker wrestler Caden Munson in the 215-pound match.
“Andrew came into our program as a butterball freshman, and has gradually slimmed down and drastically improved his technique,” said coach Hertzog. “He’s a kid that has taken advantage of the opportunities that come his way, and he’s become a much better wrestler than I would have ever guessed four years ago.”
Foreign exchange student Costa who is actually a sophomore in his home country of Spain went all three periods in a loss by a 5-3 decision versus Husker wrestler Aydan Frerking on the night.
“I ask Gerard about every week if he would consider immigrating here permanently,” said coach Hertzog. “He is such a tough kid and has developed a genuine love for the sport that you can see every time he takes the mat. Very happy we were allowed to work with him while he is here.”
Freshman Kaleb Catron recorded a win by pin in the 126-pound match for Holden on the night.
Eagle junior wrestler Aiden Christian recorded a win by pin in the 285-pound match.
Holden freshman wrestler Tye Payton and junior Trent Stout each recorded wins by forfeit.
Higginsville totaled its 36 team points on three wins by pin, two wins by decision, and two wins by forfeit.
“I feel like we wrestled very well, just didn’t have the numbers, and fell just short of a win,” said coach Hertzog. “We’ve wrestled Higginsville close since I’ve been here…good for our kids to be pushed like that in a tight dual.”
Holden Results From Richmond Triangular Meet
The Holden boys wrestling team travelled to a Richmond High School for a triangular meet against Richmond and Knob Noster on Tuesday, Jan. 30.
Versus Richmond, the Eagles fell by the final score of 60-24.
Holden’s 24 points against Richmond were secured in wins by pin from wrestlers Daylen Greene at 126 pounds, CJ Reifsteck at 175 pounds, Andrew Johnston at 215 pounds, and Aiden Christian at 285 pounds.
Versus Knob Noster, the Eagles fell by the final team score of 50-18.
Eagle wrestlers Payton Tye at 113 pounds and Greene at 126 pounds both recorded wins by decision over their Panther opponents. Johnston at 215 pounds and Christian at 285 pounds both recorded wins by pin.