After a strong season last year with six wrestlers qualifying for the national tournament, the Red Raider Wrestling team opened up their 2016 campaign this past Saturday in Mitchell, South Dakota in the Dakota Wesleyan University Open.
With a combination of fresh faces and seasoned veterans, the Red Raiders were able to place sixth as a team, and had four wrestlers place. Senior Andras Lukacs-Farkas was able to win the DWU Open in the 174 pound weight class while junior Austin Boles and freshman Dante Preciado took home second in their respective weight classes of 125 and 141 pounds. Senior Randy Null placed third in the 285 pound weight class.
Junior Sam Klarenbeek was excited to get the season underway and begin competing again.
“There is definitely room for improvement,” Klarenbeek said. “We knew the first meet was going to be rough, the first one always is. It was good to get our feet wet.”
With hopes and expectations of becoming GPAC champions as well as having seven wrestlers qualify for nationals at the end of the season, the Raiders look to improve from the DWU Open when they head down to the University of Nebraska-Kearny this Saturday for the Kearny Open.
“This tournament is a big one and it will be tough, but we hope to do well,” Klarenbeek said.
Schools from all over the region will be participating including a number of Division 1 and Division 2 schools.