10 individuals, 2 teams set for youth state tournamentWORTHINGTON — The Worthington youth teams have been wrestling well all season long.
WORTHINGTON — The Worthington youth teams have been wrestling well all season long.
This weekend, they will get to showcase their talents to the rest of the state.
Two teams and 10 individuals qualified for the state meet, starting Thursday in Rochester.
“We are very pleased,” Worthington coach Mike Luft said. “This is by far the best we’ve done as a team.”
The individuals qualified last weekend in Windom, while the kindergarten through sixth grade team qualified in Tracy.
The seventh and eighth grade team was also added to participate at state.
The wrestlers had to place in the top three to qualify individually.
“I think they all wrestled tremendous,” Luft said of the qualifying matches. “We had some kids that got fourth that wrestled just as hard as the ones who qualified. It’s just the luck of the draw.”
For a team which started practice in November, the hard work is showing through.
“It is paying off,” Luft said. “Our program is getting better and better and the kids are reaping the benefits of it. It’s a fun weekend going over to state and competing against other teams. We can gauge ourselves with other teams from around the state.”
Up against the teams from around the state, Luft likes their chances.
“I think we’re going to do pretty good,” Luft said. “It all depends on who you draw for a team. But I think we’re going to win some matches.”
Winning matches is something the youth wrestlers have been experiencing all season long.
“We’ve been a strong team all year,” Luft said. “I think we finished first in three different tournaments. I don’t think we’ve finished lower than third. They’ve kept the intensity all year. Now they get to find out what they can do at state.”
In all, nearly 1,500 wrestlers will take the mat, with 16 matches going on at once.
The older team will compete Thursday and Friday, while the younger team will wrestle Saturday and Sunday.