Defending private schools wrestling champion Ethan Krause pinned each of nine opponents during the Armed Forces Duals at North Hagerstown High School this weekend, improving his season record at 145 pounds to 13-0.
Meanwhile, he received solid support from his teammates as the Little Hoyas won six of their nine dual meets to finish fourth in an event won by Robinson Senior High School of Fairfax, Va. in the run-up to this weekend’s Beast of the East Tournament at The University of Delaware.
“We came into this weekend knowing we’d have Beast of the East immediately after. I focused on things that I know I’ll see at Beast, such as clearing ties and front headlocks,” said Krause, winner of McDonogh of Baltimore’s season-opening Ray Oliver Invitational tournament in Owings Mills.
The Duke University commit so far has tallied 10 pins and a technical fall.
Yet he wasn’t the only senior Hoya with a perfect performance in Hagerstown.
Riley Stewart (182) and Thomas Gates (220) also went 9-0, pinning six and four opponents, and their Class of 2017 classmate Joe McCord (138) pinned six opponents on the way to posting an 8-1 record.
“We came out a little flat and not ready to go the first day,” said Krause. “The second day we really turned it around and realized that finishing strong here would give us the momentum for these stressful next few weeks of exams and final papers. I’m proud of everyone turning it around and finishing strong, including Thomas Gates, who has a busted ankle.”
Gates said he traveled with the team to provide support and wrestle if necessary so Prep would forfeit any rounds in the 220-pound class as long as he didn’t irritate his ankle.
“But after the first day in which I saw the team struggling, I realized that the team needed me more than I needed to rest,” said Gates. “I wrestled one match the first day and I was wrestling very conservatively on my ankle and barely won a match. The second day, I made the decision that if I keep focusing on it, it will never get better.”
Gates said once he changed shifted his focus, he would “step on the mat and completely forget about” his ankle.
“It helped because I realized that I can wrestle through a lot more than I thought before,” he added.
According to Georgetown Prep Head Coach Carl Buchholtz, whose Little Hoyas won their 13th straight Interstate Athletic Conference title last season, Krause and Stewart “did a great job of leading the team this weekend.”
“It was a great mental and physical test for our guys as we head into the Beast of the East,” said Bucholtz.