- Last Updated on 08:05 AM 11/13/12
- BY Joe Chandler
The Halifax County High School wrestling team will be hitting the practice routine hard this week as preparations move forward toward the team’s Nov. 28 home opener against Nottoway High School and Person (N.C.) High School.
“We’ve had to spend a lot of time over these first few days on organizational types of things, like giving out equipment, getting the mats cleaned, and trying to get everyone through the hydration and body fat testing,” Taylor explained.
“That said, we haven’t been able to hit it as hard as we’d like. There’s been a rotation of wrestlers in and out of the room for the testing, so we’ve been focusing on some basic moves.
“That should change as we’ve gotten almost everybody through testing,” added the Comets coach.
“We will be able to have everyone in the room at the same time and really turn things up. We open a few days earlier this season, so we’ll really have to push hard to get where we want to be for Nottoway and Person High School.”
Twenty-two wrestlers were on hand for last Monday’s opening session, and Taylor is expecting to have a few more in the fold before the season gets underway.
The Comets will come into the season with a handful of wrestlers having a fair amount of experience. Senior co-captains Ethan Collie, Gannon Griffin and Ryan Throckmorton are expected to be among the leaders on the squad, as all three enter the season with three years of experience.
“All three of them have put in a lot of hard work over the offseason,” Taylor said, “and they have three years of varsity experience. They will provide the leadership we will need this season with the large number of first-year and young wrestlers on the team.”
In addition to Collie, Griffin and Throckmorton, Taylor has a handful of grapplers coming into the season with some experience.
Ezra Walker, Tommie Harriston, James Anderson, and Krunal Patel earned varsity letters last season and are back this season. Laquandre Kincy, Josh Reeves, Jarred Messick and Zack Carlson also return after having seen action on various levels last season.
“We will rely heavily on all of the returning wrestlers to solidify our lineup this year,” Taylor noted, “especially in the early part of the season while the new wrestlers are getting up to speed.”
Joining the experienced wrestlers is a group of 11 newcomers that Taylor hopes will be able to step in and compete.
“All of them will get a chance to wrestle off for a varsity spot, and we will try to get as much mat time for each of them when we can,” Taylor said.
Taylor said he has not been able to assign wrestlers to weight classes thus far.
“We don›t have weight classes figured out yet, but once testing is completed, we›ll hold wrestle-offs and figure out who is going where,” he said.
“With the way the weight loss program seems to be working out this season, there›s a good chance that we will have a number of new wrestlers in the starting lineup for our first match.”