T-Birds pick up a pair of wins in first KJCCC dual

Cloud County freshman Devin Haas
Cloud County freshman Devin Haas

GOODLAND, Kansas — The Cloud County Community College wrestling team performed well in its first taste of Kansas Jayhawk Community College (KJCCC) dual action on Tuesday against No. 13 Northwest Kansas Technical College.

The final score of the dual was a misleading 42-12, which was aided by 18 points from three open weights for the T-Birds. Cloud County won two of the seven matches it competed in, and had two narrow decision losses in what overall was a positive step forward from Sunday's Bob Smith Open out in Hays.

"I think we came out and wrestled tough. We asked a couple guys like Ryan Delforge, Austin Eldredge and Alec Castillo to wrestle up weight classes and I thought they went out and battled well," said Cloud County head coach, Cody Cole. "I think all of our guys came out and battled more than what we saw Sunday and showed us what we were looking for."

Eldredge got Cloud County on the board first in the 149-pound class as he pinned Sam Colvin in 2:50. Two matches later, Delforge recorded a pin of his own, earning a win over Nartorian Lee in a fall time of 2:44.

Freshmen Alec Castillo (157) and Devin Haas (184) were each on the verge of adding to the win column, but Castillo lost a tough 3-2 decision to Caleb Mendez and Haas dropped a narrow 7-5 decision to Joseph White.

Freshman heavyweight Benny Hernandez received an early-season test as well Tuesday as he battled No. 1 ranked Odgerel Bathishig, eventually falling to the Mavericks' 285-pounder in 2:53.

"(Hernandez) was competitive in the match," Cole said. "He has a lot of room to grow still, but it was a positive experience for him."

Cloud County will look to build off Tuesday's performance when it heads off to McPherson to dual Central Christian College. Action gets underway at 7 p.m. on Friday.

"I'm really excited about the positive step we made from Sunday to today and I think that'll carry out to Friday so we can finish the semester out on a really positive note," Cole said.