Kaden Weber's run to state highlights 2021-2022 wrestling season for Nevada
The Nevada wrestling team took its lumps in 2021-2022, but the Cubs placed one wrestler at both the boys traditional state tournament and the girls' state tournament.
Kaden Weber had a breakout year for Nevada in making state for the first time.
After failing to get past districts last year as a freshman, Weber placed seventh in Class 2A at 106 pounds as a sophomore. He ended the regular season undefeated, won sectional and district championships, and went 3-2 at state to finish 39-2.
"It was great to have what I consider a top wrestler in 2A in our wrestling room," Nevada head coach Lonnie Ferguson said. "It was great to be back in the well and wrestling in front of that crowd."
At state Weber earned a 10-2 major decision over Crestwood's Mitchell Schmauss in the first round then lost a controversial match to Sergeant Bluff-Luton's Ethan Skoglund when he was disqualified after building a 4-1 lead. Weber came back to earn an 8-3 victory over Carroll's Dreylen Schweitzer, but lost in the consolation third round by an 8-3 decision to Atlantic-CAM's Aiden Smith.
The loss to Smith put Weber in the seventh-place match against Grinnell's Dylan Heater. Weber defeated Heater by a 3-1 decision.
"The work he put in at the barn and all the wrestling he has done plus the difference in the weight room were the main keys to his success," Ferguson said. "I think just growing into a full 106 has helped a lot in his physical and mental game."
Ferguson said Weber has the potential to do even better next season.
"We need to continue to get better and work on areas that we struggle with," Ferguson said. "We need to continue to work in the weight room."
Freshmen Mackenzie Arends and Dakota Hastings stood out on the girls side.
Arends went 11-12 at 182 on the season at took second at 190 during the girls' state tournament.
Arends posted a 4-1 record at girls' state, defeating Spencer's Kaylee Nachtigal by major decision (9-0), Saint Ansgar's Kloey Dowse by fall in 26 seconds, AHSTW's Isabella Canada by fall in 3:28 and Independence's Rachel Eddy by a 2-1 decision. In the championship match she fell to West Lyon's Jana Terwee in a 3-2 battle.
Hastings lost both of her matches at girls state wrestling at 115. She had six victories on the season.
"We have two girls this season that worked very hard with the boys and they both wrestled in the girls state tournament," Ferguson said. "They are both working very hard in the off season and will be ready for next year."
The other guys that stood out for Nevada were seniors Camdan Vincent and Holden Fry.
Wrestling at 285, Vincent won his first HOIC title and he also took second at sectionals and third at districts. He ended the season with a 20-7 record.
Fry competed at 182. He went 4-2 in limited action before suffering a season-ending neck injury.
"Cam had a great year and just finished one match away from qualifying for state," Ferguson said. "Holden had a great start and found out he had three cracked vertebrae in his neck and couldn't wrestle anymore. I know he would have had a chance at qualifying for state."
Seniors Christian Decoske and Zach Martinez tallied 12 and 10 wins respectively competing at 132 and 152. Juniors Payton Mosinski and Nick Lauritzen each tallied seven victories wrestling at 160 and 285.
Sophomore Matt Sallee was 9-7 at 132. Sophomores Quentin Tolle and Tait Olsen each won six matches and Caiden Woten ended up with three wins.
Kobe Thipasouk won 10 matches as a freshman at 220. Carson Reed added eight victories as a freshman.
"I enjoyed watching the team work together," Ferguson said. "I liked having some of the more experienced wrestlers help the young first year wrestlers learn and get better throughout the year."
As a team Nevada went 1-15 in dual meets. The Cubs placed seventh at the HOIC meet, sixth at sectionals and eighth at districts.
Ferguson said the main goals for next year are to have a state champion and improve the team's dual record. He said it will require a lot of work in the offseason to achieve those goals.
"We need to work on the mat and in the weight room," Ferguson said. "We have such young kids with very little experience, that we need to spend the time on the mat working on basic moves and knowing what to do in different situations."