Bison steaming into state

Wednesday, February 15, 2017
R.B Headley/McCook Gazette McCook High coaches, wrestlers and fans will focus the final biggest challenges at this week's Class B state wrestling championships in Omaha. B-4 district was intense on Saturday as Bison watched sophomore Colin Giron pin this heayvweight opponent. Giron missed state by just one win, but five others have qualified.

McCOOK, Neb. -- Adrenaline starts flowing even faster when looking at what the McCook Bison could confront during this weekend's Class B state wrestling.

Take senior Eric Langan and the 182-pound field for a great example.

If Langan defeats Omaha Gross' Justin Grabowski, he likely gets a shot at two-time defending state champ Trevor Nichelson from Ashland-Greenwood.

Nichelson's lost three times this season (37-3) so he is not invincible.

"Should be an exciting match," Bison coach Nick Umscheid confirmed.

Not too far away at 220, junior Kaleb Taylor confronts a state tournament rematch with Wayne's Mikey Reyes.

Taylor triumphed but only after a terrific 11-10 tussle in the consolation rounds.

"Kaleb won that match and will hopefully be victorious again," Umscheid proclaimed.

Freshman 106-pounder Carson Richards clearly faces a great challenge in his first state tourney match at Omaha: 45-2 Shawn Buchanan from Crete.

Richards reached the B-4 title match Saturday, which means he clinched a No. 2 seed for state and usually would expect fewer wins from his first-round foe.

However, Buchanan lost his B-1 semifinal to a strong Blair Bear wrestler Jackson Nielsen (34-8).

Buchanan rebounded by pinning one foe and dominating the third-place match, 9-0.

"We have not seen him (Buchanan) this year," Umscheid admitted about the various tournaments Bison have wrestled. "Looks like has lots of pins on his record."

B-4 champ Jaret Matson meets Berto Vergara from Wayne, who finished fourth in his district.

Matson will be favored win this match and then face either Omaha Skutt's Danny Thompson or Nebraska City's Andrew Harrah.

Most Nebraska wrestling fans know the Skutt Skyhawks are a traditional powerhouse wrestling program.

"Both of these wrestlers (Thompson, Harrah) are high-quality wrestlers," Umscheid observed.

Finally, senior Dunncan Rogers (160) opens with a shot against district champ Jacob Pinkerton from Beatrice.

Pinkerton's 40-4 record won't bother Rogers. He's been battling big winners in this tough weight class all season.

All five Bison are ready to hit Omaha at full intensity in their medal quests.

"As far as health goes, we were as healthy as we have been throughout the year," Umscheid concluded. "Everyone has dings and bruises time of year, but at the state tournament all of that is put aside. Let adrenaline take over the match."

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