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By TERRY GREENE
Mahomet Citizen sportswriter
The M-S varsity wrestling team is on a hot streak and doesn’t show any signs of cooling off as it swept through the week of January 14 with several convincing performances. The Bulldogs knocked of Rantoul 78-3 and Normal U-High 54-27 in a pair of matches on January 15 in Normal.
Leading the way for M-S against Rantoul with pins was Kyle Heller (145), David Wisehart (160), Ian Belyea (195), and Parker Overmeyer (220). The dual with U-High was more evenly matched but pins from Tyler Moxley (126), Clayton Overmeyer (138), and Heller put the Bulldogs over the top.
M-S posted a solid 57-21 win over Champaign Central on January 17 behind pins from Kody Hitchins (113), Kolton Taylor (120), Cody Hooper (132), P. Overmeyer (220), and Jordon Geese (285). Moxley (126) won a hard-earned 7-5 decision over Central’s highly regarded Kenton Walker.
It was “Senior Night” on January 18 with the Herrin Tigers providing the competition, and the Bulldogs didn’t disappoint as they cruised to a 54-15 victory. Down 12-0 early, the Bulldog’s Parker Overmeyer (220) won a 9-7 overtime decision and string of seven straight M-S wins followed, four of them by pins. On the night, falls were recorded by Jeff Wingle (106), Hitchins (113), Taylor (120), Moxley (126), and Wisehart (160).
Moxley's win was the 100th of his high school career. Looking back on the last four years, Moxley said he had enjoyed the competition and camaraderie that comes with the sport. “The time has just flown by. It seems like only yesterday we were in the wrestling room at the junior high,” he said. “It’s crazy how fast the last four years have gone.”
Coach Rob Ledin said that any successful athletic program must have a strong senior class. “Watching these kids grow up from where they first started as freshmen brings a tear to my eye because I know how hard they’ve worked and how special they are,” he said. “It’s not an easy sport to play or practice, and my hat is off to all of them. They’re outstanding young men.”
M-S wrapped up the week by going 2-2 on January 19, defeating Metamora (42-21) and Normal Community (48-29) and falling to Normal West (38-30) and Washington (38-18) in a series of duals at Mahomet. Wrestlers who had a big day for the Bulldogs included Taylor, Moxley, Heller, and Bane, all of whom went 4-0.