DODGE CITY — The “little things” proved to be costly for the Garden City High School wrestling team on Thursday, as they fell to Western Athletic Conference rival Dodge City in a 33-27 dual thriller on the Demons’ home mat.
“Kids not making weight, kids not being committed. I’m not real happy right now and it goes back to that,” an upset head coach Carlos Prieto said following Thursday’s dual about some of the little things that hurt his Buffs. “I knew it was going to be a tough matchup and thought it would come down to our last two weights and it did.”
The final two matches were GCHS freshman Steven Sellers, who had a 15-12 nail-biter loss to Dodge City’s Anthony Mariche at 106 pounds, and sophomore Silas Pineda who squeaked out a 1-0 win at 113 over Couy Weil.
“I thought we had a great week of practice coming back from Christmas break and just yesterday (Wednesday), we had some things that maybe kind of indicated that we were going to get our butts kicked tonight, and that’s exactly what happened,” Prieto said. “I applaud the kids that got in there and stepped up for us, but ultimately — not to take anything away from Dodge City — but they just out-wrestled us. They just gave us a good old fashion southwest Kansas butt whooping.”
The Buffs were also without returning state champion 126-pounder Jacob Holt during Thursday’s dual. Prieto declined to comment on why Holt did not compete.
Other wins for the Buffs included a 6-5 decision from Diago Hernandez (120); an 8-4 decision from Ethan Guebara (126); a 6-1 decision from Kaj Perez (132); and a 5-0 win from Trey Medina (145).
At 152, Curtis Near recorded a fall over Weston Moon, and at 170, Alex Rodriguez had a fall over Julian Galindo.
Josh Dowdy, who typically competes at 170, bumped up to 182 for Thursday’s dual, but came up short and was pinned by Dodge City’s Tyler Pipenger.
“We kind of are open in some weight classes. At 195 we didn’t have anybody there. So we bumped him (Dowdy) up to 182 and Josh gave it all he had. He’s just inexperienced there, he got caught and got pinned. I applaud him. Even though he got pinned, I still think that he gave us a great effort,” Prieto said. “I’m not saying the kids didn’t give a good effort, it’s just the little things in the practice room that carry over to a match.”
Thursday’s dual loss put the Buffs at 8-4 in duals this season.
“This is the most losses we've had since I’ve been a coach here in Garden City," Prieto said. "It’s our competition. Everyone is catching up to us. We’ll be back, we’re going to learn from this and get better."