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December 4, 2013

WRESTLING PREVIEW: Hopes still high at Floyd Central

Sisson thinks Highlanders have potential despite losing 10 seniors

FLOYDS KNOBS —  Despite graduating 10 seniors from last year’s squad that won the Hoosier Hills Conference, the Jeffersonville Sectional and the Jeff Regional, the Floyd Central wrestling team thinks it has a chance to equal that success in the 2013-14 campaign.

According to head coach Brandon Sisson, it just comes down to how dedicated the Highlanders are.

“I think we can be in the hunt for all of them if we work hard and improve,” Sisson said. “I think we are going to have a successful year. We have some guys who are new to the varsity lineup and have a chance to make a name for themselves.”

Four returning seniors are expected to lead the Floyd Central grapplers this season. They are Chase Herron (170 pounds), Cory Troutman (152), Austin Ward (132) and Lance Youtsey (182). Herron, Troutman and Ward each qualified for semistate last year.

The Highlanders welcome back three sophomores with some varsity experience in Franklin Korte (285), Sean Brown (120) and Tyler Crowl (126).

Sisson says some juniors who have primarily wrestled at the junior varsity level the past two years will get a shot to show what they can do in the varsity ranks this season. Two of those juniors are Brayden Hoke (145) and Jon Strobel (160). Sisson also expects contributions right away from 112-pound freshman Jarrod Cunningham.

Only one Highlander — last season’s News and Tribune Area Wrestler of the Year Terrence Kennedy, who has graduated — advanced to the IHSAA State Finals last season. But Sisson believes this year’s team has the potential to send several grapplers to Indianapolis.

“I think we have the ability to send more than one guy to state,” Sisson said. “Individual-wise, we can do better than last year and I think that will shock some people.”

Like always, the Highlanders face a difficult regular-season schedule that should prepare them for the postseason. The slate includes this weekend’s HHC Duals, a duals tournament at Calumet High School in Northern Indiana, the Evansville Mater Dei Holiday Classic and the Old Capital Classic. Floyd Central also will square off against defending Kentucky state champion St. Xavier in a dual meet in early January.

Sisson expects the HHC title to be “up for grabs” this season, as he says Columbus East has the most returning wrestlers among the conference squads this year.

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