Carl Junction will look to keep up the momentum from last year’s sixth-place district finishing team while having to replace its only two state placers.
Zeke Wall (sixth at 285 pounds) graduated while Jackson White (fifth at 160 pounds) transferred away from Carl Junction.
Coach Ty Jaquess enters his third season as head coach of the Bulldogs with two returning state qualifiers.
Holden Hughes will be a senior leader after qualifying for state at 132 pounds last year.
“Holden is very talented and can score in a variety of ways. I expect to see him wrestling at a high level and being a major point scorer for us this season,” Jaquess said.
Jesse Cassatt was impressive in his freshman season coming up just one match short of placing at 195 pounds.
“He improved all season long and became a hammer in the lineup. He will continue to improve and I expect big things from him this season,” Jaquess said.
Cassatt is expected to wrestle either 182 or 195 pounds.
Sophomore Wyatt Ross has stood out with his offseason improvement. Jaquess is looking for him to wrestle at 152 pounds this year.
Seniors Tyler Huffman (285) and Kobe Maxwell (170) along with junior Isiac Shields (160) and sophomore Cole Stewart (145) return to the varsity lineup as well.
Sheilds had his season cut short due to injury last year, but is back healthy this year. Maxwell had a strong season after taking time away from the sport prior to his junior year. Huffman will replace Wall at the 285 pound spot.
Sophomore Noah Southern will be another Carl Junction name to watch. He was a good junior high wrestler for the Bulldogs, but missed his freshman season due to injury.