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Sports Archives The Altamont Enterprise, December 10, 2009
Blackbird wrestling has high hopes, despite opening loss to Cohoes
By Jordan J. Michael
VOORHEESVILLE Last Thursday’s opening meet for the Blackbird wrestling team was full of forfeits and pin falls. Voorheesville ended up on the losing side, 54-30.
“We’re a little low on numbers right now,” said senior captain Taylor Treadgold who got a win at 125 pounds by pinning D. Sickles.
Top wrestlers Jerry Clark (152 pounds) and Dylan Foster (145) did not compete. Only one can compete in each weight class.
“I went with some younger guys tonight,” said second-year Head Coach Matt Robinson. “They made rookie mistakes and that’s what cost us. You don’t really know what to expect in the first match, but we’ll see Cohoes again.”
The Blackbirds got pinned by Cohoes six different times and Robinson blames that on the neutral defense being sub par. “We pretty much have ourselves to blame for getting pinned,” he said. “The kids shot from too far away.”
On the bright side, Voorheesville wrestlers pinned three opponents on their home mat. Treadgold’s pin was followed with takedowns by Quinn Treadgold at 130 pounds and Don Case at 285 pounds in last match of the night.
High-school wrestling matches are three periods, two minutes each. Every wrestler for Voorheesville was able to get to the second round. “These young guys showed a lot of character tonight,” Robinson said after Thursday’s match “We’re more of a stand-up team. I teach very basic stuff.”
The first three match ups of the night 96 pounds, 103 pounds, and 112 pounds were forfeited by the Blackbirds because the team didn’t have anyone to wrestle in those positions. It gave Cohoes an 18-point head start.
“Once we’re back to full strength, then we’ll be a top team,” said Robinson. Voorheesville is in the Colonial Council and has moved up to Class C this year from Class D. “It’s a good situation because Class D is actually tougher,” Robinson said. The classes are based on the size of school enrollment.
The Colonial Council is a tough league, and Robinson said the Blackbirds will have its hands full with the likes of Watervliet, Ravena, and Schalmont. Voorheesville was 3-5 last season and 10-16 overall.
Clark is the defending sectional champion at 152 pounds and Taylor Treadgold and Jimmy Sheedy also placed at sectionals. Robinson expects the same from those three athletes this year, if not better. “We have guys right behind our experienced wrestlers that can pick up some slack,” he said. “There’s a very wide range of skill level here.”
Also wrestling against Cohoes were Spencer Glaser (135 pounds), C. Cummings (140), Keegan Nally (152), Darren Staples (160), Claude Rodrigue (171), and Brian Katchman (215). J. Rich and Sheedy received victories on Thursday due to forfeit.
“Our team has four or five new guys and that makes us a little inexperienced,” said Taylor Treadgold. “But, the new guys are better than most because they have plenty of potential.”
The Birds hosted a dual tournament on Saturday and invited five other teams. It was the first tournament at Voorheesville in recent memory. “It’s a good way to get the team recognized,” Robinson said last Thursday. “We need some more crowd support.”
Robinson is a young coach at 23, but is better prepared for 2009-10 after going through ups and downs in 2008-09. He knows that he needs to maintain composure through the long wrestling season.
“I just need to let the kids wrestle,” said Robinson. “I got very frustrated last year when we would lose and I probably yelled too much. I’m not going to let those little things get under my skin this time.”