2016-12-29 / Sports

St. Ignace Saints Wrestlers Pin Conference Competition for Two Wins

By Erich T. Doerr


St. Ignace wrestling coach Rich Cullen (right, center) has his entire team around him as he discusses strategy before the second half of its Straits Area Conference dual meet Wednesday, December 21. It turned out to be a good night for the Saints at home, as they bested Newberry 42-30 in their opener, then defeated Sault Ste. Marie 48-36 in the nightcap. St. Ignace wrestling coach Rich Cullen (right, center) has his entire team around him as he discusses strategy before the second half of its Straits Area Conference dual meet Wednesday, December 21. It turned out to be a good night for the Saints at home, as they bested Newberry 42-30 in their opener, then defeated Sault Ste. Marie 48-36 in the nightcap. Wednesday night, December 21, was a good one for the St. Ignace wrestling team as it hosted a Straits Area Conference meet at home and won both its matches. The Saints (3-1, 2-0) started the night with a 42-30 win against Newberry and carried over that momentum to a 48-36 win against Sault Ste. Marie. The Rudyard wrestling team was also in action, but ended up dealt a pair of defeats, losing 39-9 against the Sault Ste. Marie and 42-6 against Newberry. St. Ignace and Rudyard did not face each other at this conference meet.

“All in all, we wrestled better than we have been,” St. Ignace coach Rich Cullen said. “We’re starting to put some moves together, but we still have work to do.”


At left: St. Ignace’s Caleb Brown grapples with Sault Ste. Marie’s Anton LaPine in 152- pound action during the two schools’ meeting in St. Ignace Wednesday, December 21, at the Straits Area Conference meet. Caleb later pinned his opponent to take his second victory of the night as the Saints bested the Blue Devils 48-36. At left: St. Ignace’s Caleb Brown grapples with Sault Ste. Marie’s Anton LaPine in 152- pound action during the two schools’ meeting in St. Ignace Wednesday, December 21, at the Straits Area Conference meet. Caleb later pinned his opponent to take his second victory of the night as the Saints bested the Blue Devils 48-36. Caleb Brown led the charge for the Saints as he pinned both of his opponents Wednesday night. His brother, Hunter Brown, also won both of his matches, recording a victory on the mat in one and a forfeit in the other. Alysse Bentley, Halley Halberg, and Halley’s cousin, Zach Bigger, won both of their matches by forfeits owing to a lack of competition.

“This is good for us,” Caleb said after the meet. “Hopefully we will advance and get better as we go on.”


St. Ignace’s Logan DeKeyser does battle with Newberry’s Nathan Magnuson in the 125-pound weight class at the Straits Area Conference meet in St. Ignace Wednesday, December 21. Magnuson would come back to win this match, but the Saints bested the Indians 42-30. St. Ignace’s Logan DeKeyser does battle with Newberry’s Nathan Magnuson in the 125-pound weight class at the Straits Area Conference meet in St. Ignace Wednesday, December 21. Magnuson would come back to win this match, but the Saints bested the Indians 42-30. St. Ignace fielded a large team Wednesday and the strength in numbers helped propel the team to its victories, thanks to the points it gained through opponents forfeiting due to lacking wrestlers in certain weight classes. Mr. Cullen said having a large roster, like the Saints do this year, is a big help to the team. The Saints won three of their five matches with the Indians and started off with leads in the other two until the Newberry wrestlers launched successful comebacks. They split 3-3 against the Blue Devils with the forfeited matches playing a big role in swinging the match in St. Ignace’s favor.

The Bulldogs fielded a short team Wednesday with the resulting forfeits hampering their performance. Jace Jenerou led the Bulldogs as he won both of his matches. Teammate Jayden Williams lost both of his matches, but wrestled well and made his opposition earn their victories. Dylan Threlfall won his match against Sault Ste. Marie.

“We wanted to get some good matches in, as it is early in the season,” Rudyard coach Chad Smith said.

Wednesday’s meet was the first of four Straits Area Conference meets this season. The Saints will look to take their competition to the mat one more time in 2016 as they will wrestle in Munising at a team tournament Friday, December 30.

Return to top


Click here for digital edition
2016-12-29 digital edition