Viking grapplers start off season with two big wins
By Jeremy Evans
Tribune staff writer
Unless they didn’t allow a point, the South Tahoe Vikings couldn’t have started out the wrestling season any better Wednesday night. On his first night as head coach, Ken Robbins watched his team beat Reno 60-10 in a Sierra Division match, then turn around and beat shorthanded Truckee 75-6 in a nonleague dual at South Tahoe High School.
Needless to say, Robbins couldn’t have envisioned a better start.
“I’m absolutely tickled to death,” Robbins said. “It’s hard to know what to expect when you have eight sophomores. Last night and this morning, there was a lot of churning going on while I tried to sleep. I was excited and nervous for these guys because sophomore year is when you find out how good you are.”
Robbins brings up the sophomore class because that’s what class dominates the Vikings’ roster. But in their first-ever varsity matches, Derek Simon and Cody Reeder wrestled flawlessly. Simon, who won by forfeit against Reno, pinned the Wolverines’ Cole Hodges in the second period and Reeder pinned the Huskies’ Eric Jackson in the first match. Reeder won his other match by forfeit, one of 15 weight classes South Tahoe won by forfeit in the two matches.
“In the first matches like this, you just want the guys to wrestle as best as they can, no matter who they are wrestling,” Robbins said. “These guys wrestled great. It’s nice to go up against somebody different and with a different color for a change. These guys did a nice job of working on the moves they worked on in practice.”
The Vikings’ Mike Crouse won both of his matches, including a pin against Truckee’s Amy Watkins. Miles Wallace also won his match against the Wolverines.
South Tahoe returns to the mat on Saturday when it travels to compete in the Yerington Duals. The Vikings will face defending 3A state champion Spring Creek, Fernley and Truckee in their dual matches.
“Reno was the No. 5 team in the state last year,” Robbins said. “I know they lost some guys, but they have always been a perennial power in our league. I hope folks start to recognize what’s going on up here now. Two 50-point wins like this is really great to see.”