The Kayhi wrestling team competed at the state tournament on the 21-22nd of May. The D1 division was held at Bartlett High, and the girls competed at Chugiak High.
The team went up with 12 wrestlers, and came out with 4 placers, with Degan Linne as a finalist.
Linne faced Kobe Ames of East Anchorage in the finals, losing by decision 10-4. Degan’s brother, Brayden Linne, also faced Ames in the state finals Braydens freshman which came out to be Ames first championship. This was Ames’ third and final championship.
Linne is ready to come back his senior year and take the championship his brother didn’t have the chance to get his senior year, due to injury.
“The thing I’m most excited about next year is to take home the state title, since my brother didn’t get the chance to his senior year,” Linne said.
Linne wasn’t the only wrestler who stood out from Ketchikan, senior Charlie Blair and junior Kollin Houthoofd came out placing 5th, and sophomore Liam Moseng placing 6th at the state tournament.
Coach Rick Collins said that it was hard for some of the wrestlers’ stamina from being out of competition for so long, but they still persisted to perform at a high level, especially Blair.
“Charlie has come along way,” Collins said. “He’s really good at a few things. He has a good mat return, a nice shot, and good escape skills.”
Collins was also impressed with the effort given from Houthoofd, and is excited to see him excell in the upcoming year.
“Kollin stepped up and wrestled really well,” Collins said. “I was really proud of him this year, to take that much time off and wrestle with stitches. I was very impressed with his overall performance.”
The wrestling team is graduating two seniors this year, but that shouldn’t change the outcome of the upcoming season.
“Andy and Charlie are the hardest workers in practice, so we’re going to miss that leadership,” Collins said. “I always miss having the old seniors on trips and in the practice room.”
Besides all of the roadblocks for the wrestling team this year, the team is happy for the opportunities they got. Coach Collins is excited for the next season, and is happy with the way this season ended.
“We were so lucky to be able to have a state tournament this year,” Collins said. “If I didn’t love coaching I wouldn’t be attached to the kids.”