The Ripon Tiger wrestling team knew it had its work cut out for it if it hoped to win its third-straight regional title last week Saturday.
It was facing a state-ranked Lomira team that had beat it 70-6 to begin the season and a Campbellsport squad that had gotten the upper hand the previous two weeks.
While the Tigers weren’t able to capture the championship, they showed plenty of improvement.
They finished second out of seven teams at the Campbellsport Regional with 204.5 points, placing behind only Lomira (264.5).
The host Cougars placed third with 170 points and was followed by Kewaskum (147), North Fond du Lac/St. Mary’s Springs (119.5), Waupun (89) and Mayville (53).
“I was pleased with our performance. Our team wrestled fantastic,” Ripon coach Jared Esala said. “Any time we enter a tournament with teams like Lomira, Campbellsport and Kewaskum, we know it’s going to be a high intensity battle. We didn’t back down a bit.”
Despite not advancing to team sectionals for a third-straight year, the Tigers will be well represented Saturday at the Milwaukee Lutheran Division 2 Individual Sectional.
They qualified six wrestlers for the meet, which is just two fewer than last season — when they wrestled in a much easier regional.
Read the full story, which includes information on the individual qualifiers, as well as those who just missed out, in the Feb. 16, 2017 edition of the Ripon Commonwealth Press.