The North Bend Eagle


Four Tigers wrestle in Maine exchange

by Molly Nicola
Published 7/5/17

Nineteen wrestlers and three coaches from Maine traveled to Nebraska to compete in four duals over the course of 10 days. Their first stop was O’Neill followed by Grand Island Northwest, Winnebago and finally, North Bend on Saturday.

WrestlingJacob Ray, bottom, takes on Peyton Cole of Ellsworth, Maine, in a dual Saturay [July 1, 2017].

NBC wrestlers Jacob Ray, Joel Hines, Dalton Mueller and Brock Ray, along with coach Ken Streff, were among the 20 area athletes to take part.

“It was a fun time, meeting the wrestlers, talking to them, seeing the new styles,” Dalton Mueller said. “Coming back from a week-long camp was definitely the hardest part.”

Members of the NBC wrestling team returned from a wrestling camp in Wisconsin just a day and a half before the Nebraska-Maine Exchange Friendship Dual.

“Our guys are tired.” Streff said. “They wrestled 12 to 15 matches this week.”

Besides tiredness being a challenge, Streff said coaching was challenging, too.

“They’re so technical with everything,” he said. “We wrestled well with them, though. They have one team that comes out of Maine that’s really good and we’re putting together who we can. Once we got (weight classes) all set, we had injuries pop up.”

Joshua Strauss was planning on wrestling at 155 pounds but was out with a knee injury, so Jacob Ray filled in with 24 hours notice.

The team from Maine was selected from across the entire state and most of the wrestlers were state finalists. Two of the Maine wrestlers, Cody Craig of Skowhegan and Danny Buteau of Oak Hills, are four-time state champions.
This is the second time in history that Maine won all four of its Nebraska duals, including a 54-31 win in North Bend. Historically, Nebraska teams have dominated the series.

Ken Streff and Wahoo coach Darrel Foster co-coached the Nebraska team.

“[Coaching] the Nebraska team was fun and different,” Streff said. “I know a lot of the guys but never coached a lot of the guys. So for me to get the opportunity to coach the guys that in six months will be your competition was a little different, kind of unique. But during the experience you put away your competitive side of things you see during the school season, and you’re here to have fun.”

The 20-man Nebraska team consisted of wrestlers from North Bend, High Plains, Blair, Lincoln East, Columbus, Fremont, David City, East Butler, Howells-Dodge, Wahoo, Wahoo Neumann and Fillmore Central.



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