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BUCKNER - With the right guys in the right spots the Oldham County wrestling team took first in the Moore Invitational Saturday.
"We finally got all of our guys in the right spots," first-year OCHS coach Aaron Riordan said. "We beat some pretty good teams."
The Colonels also finished third in the always strong Seneca Invitational this season.
At Moore, OCHS, ranked No. 17 in the preseason by the coaches' association, beat Southern, PRP and a strong Lexington Henry Clay team 51-30.
Riordan, a former state champion for the Colonels at 215-pounds before going on to a collegiate football career at Georgetown College, has a team led by five seniors and a strong group of sophomores and freshman.
Senior Trey Morlatt is undefeated to date and ranked No. 1 in the state at 130 pounds.
"All five seniors are pretty talented," Riordan said.
Another senior who Riordan expects to make an impact this year is Nate Rousseau at 145-pounds.
"If he stays healthy I think he's going to be one of the best kids in the state," Riordan said. "He's kind of been under the radar the past couple of years because of injuries but he has a lot of talent."
Three underclassmen who have opened strong are Cory Craycraft with a 13-2 record at 160-pounds, Jeff Smith who is 13-0 at 189-pounds and Ichiro Chiba at 215-pounds just out from the football team.
The Colonels will go up against some of the state's best over the Christmas break when they compete in the Woodford County Invitational starting Dec. 26.
North wins second
The North Oldham Mustangs have continued to wrestle well taking second at the Seneca Duals Saturday.
NOHS beat Meade County, DeSales, Iroquois and Central losing just one match 36-34 to No. 13 Seneca a wrestler short when one of the Mustangs failed to make weight.
"With a full roster I think we would have won the Seneca match," NOHS coach Robert Fulk said. "We had a pretty good day."
Seniors Taylor South and Andre Zeppa both went 5-0 on the day. South is at 112-pounds but is likely to move back down to 103 soon. Zeppa is 28-0 on the season and ranked fifth in the state at 125-pounds.
At 135, Dan Thomson won four matches before suffering his first loss of the season and is now 23-1. Kyle Forbes also went 4-1 for the Mustangs and Davis Dudley had a big win beating a ranked opponent at 130-pounds.
The Mustangs will defend their Valley Invitational title over the holidays and are preparing to host the regional dual meet Jan. 8-9 which includes top 10 ranked teams Fern Creek, South Oldham, OCHS and Eastern with the top two teams from region moving on to the state duals championship the following week in Lexington.
"All the matches should be barn burners," Fulk said. "We are in the same pool with South and with the top two from each pool going on to state duals, we are really focusing on beating South."
South opens strong
The South Oldham Dragons, ranked No. 6 in the state in the preseason, have opened with two of the best invitationals in the area going to Evansville Mater Dei, the Ryle Raider Invitational and at the Floyd Central Invitational this Saturday.
"We have gone against really, really tough competition this year," SOHS coach Steve Fiser said. "Evansville Mater Dei is ranked No. 1 in Indiana this year and we turned right around from that match and went against a top five team from Tennessee."
The Dragons may have had their best success at the Ryle meet which draws the best teams from Northern Kentucky along with No. 1 ranked Union County, Larue County and Henry Clay taking fifth place.
Junior Ryan Houchens, ranked No. 2 at 189, was second while senior Cody Lasseigne was second at 171-pounds where he is also ranked second in the state. Brandon Whitehouse, ranked No. 6 in the state at 103, won second as well. Senior Andrew Mitchell won third place and is ranked No. 4 at 140-pounds.
"Ryle was a good tournament for us," Fiser said. "We showed some life."
The Dragons got a boost this Saturday at Floyd Central when Cam Hartmann returned from a broken hand suffered during football season and posted a 5-0 record.
SOHS will compete at Woodford County over the holiday break.
"At Woodford County we should be able to put our best lineup out on the mat at every class," Fiser said. "This will be our shot at seeing if we are a team that can compete with the best in the state and maybe do something special this year."
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