Yukon grapplers enjoyed their third straight successful outing at the Larry Wilkey Invitational last weekend.
The Millers took fourth place overall at Jenks High School. Weeks before, they took second at a Fayetteville tournament. Before that, they defeated Bethel 84-0.
Most would think Yukon is feeling elated by the recent success, but they aren’t.
“We’ve got work to do,” coach Joe Schneider said. “We’ve got plenty of work to do.”
Schneider’s comments don’t come because he’s disappointed with his group, he can’t be with how they wrestled this weekend. They had eight top-five placers including a first-place finisher.
Cooper Mahaffey (106) placed fourth, Steven Cook (113) placed fifth, Noah Hanscom (120) placed fifth, Kylon Burgert (132) placed second, Chance Bailey (182) placed fifth, Connor Columbus (195) placed third, Corbin Gordon (220) placed fourth. Ashton Aldridge was the lone first-place finisher in the heavy weight division.
“He had two close matches,” Schnedier said. “Semi-final match went into overtime and so did the final. Close matches, we’ve got to learn how to get a takedown in those matches that way we don’t have to get that 1-1 and hope we get the coin flip.”
The Millers wrested well, but their focus is on what’s next.
“We definitely need to rise up for this weekend, we have district duals coming,” Schneider said. “We’re never going to get our heads too high in the clouds. We sure aren’t looking over Deer Creek. Then we’ve got our conference tournament, which, our conference is tough.”
“There’s no time to sit back and relish in the wonderful things we’ve done because we’ve got work to do.”
To make improvements in their craft, it starts by doing the little things.
“We’ve got to get some of our middleweight guys to step it up,” said Schneider. “That’s what’s going to matter in dual meets. Getting those guys, maybe not necessarily the win against head to head opponent, but to no to give them bonus.”
Finding a happy medium between fun and fight also will be imperative to their success.
“I see some guys as we’re going through the matches and going through the tournament, they’re getting better and having fun. That’s important, you don’t want it to just be the grind but, at the same time, we’ve got to work on some of those grind situations. That’s where we’re losing some of the matches where it’s a little bit of a fight.”
The Millers compete Thursday at Deer Creek.