Even though the 2010-11 Tiger wrestling team has only one senior, there is reason for hope in Ripon.

The Tigers return seven starters from last year’s team.

Many underclassmen were thrust into competition last season, meaning this year’s competitors are more experienced at the varsity level than many their age.

Although that bodes well for Ripon, some large shoes still need to be filled for the young Tigers.

Lost to graduation is two-time state qualifier Connor Hanson (2009, 2010), as well as sectional qualifiers John Schroeder (2010) and Nathan Schendel (2009), and other contributors.

“When you lose a two-time state qualifier and two more sectional qualifiers, it takes a hit on the program,” coach Mark Bradley said. “Young wrestlers got varsity experience last year and need to continue to improve.”

Helping out Ripon’s cause is its strength in numbers. The team has more athletes going out this year than last. That can be crucial for a team in filling weight classes, although the coach is still deciding which classes will contain which athletes.

Read the full story in the Dec. 2, 2010 edition of the Ripon Commonwealth Press.

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