Brahman wrestlers take second in dual tournaments

OKEECHOBEE — The Okeechobee High School Brahman wrestling team is capping off a busy week that saw them compete in 12 duals in a matter of seven days.

The team got things started on Jan. 16 with a regional dual at Jensen Beach High School. The Okeechobee wrestlers were defeated by Palm Bay and Merritt Island in the dual. Palm Bay eventually went on to defeat Jensen Beach to earn a ticket to the state dual in Kissimmee.

Three days later on Jan. 19, the Brahmans traveled to Satellite Beach to compete in another dual tournament. In that tournament the Brahmans came away with a 2-3 record, defeating Space Coast and Satellite Beach. The three Brahman losses came from Palm Harbor, Merritt Island and in a heartbreaker to Atlantic (Daytona Beach) in criteria, which means the match came down to a tie breaker. Still, Brahman wrestling coach Bruce Jahner brought his team back into the practice room to recap the last few tournaments and work on a few things. “I kept telling the kids we weren’t changing anything, we just needed to tweak a few things,” said Jahner.

Lake Okeechobee News/Richard Marion
The Okeechobee High School varsity wrestling team poses with their second- place trophy earned during a dual at Centennial High School on Jan. 23.

That set the stage for another duals tournament on Jan. 23 at Centennial High School. In the first match the Brahmans came out with a 58-21 win over Orlando Jones. In the second round Okeechobee faced Martin County and defeated them 64-15. And in the third match of the night the Brahmans got another victory when they defeated Treasure Coast 49-30.

“That was a tough match-up,” Jahner said of Treasure Coast. “They have a very solid team. The biggest difference from our previous matches was our third period. We were finally putting six minutes on the mat.” Okeechobee followed up the close win over Treasure Coast by blasting host school Centennial 72-9. In the finals the Brahmans were matched up against Heritage. Heritage had a very strong mid-weight class this year and showed their power in the first few matches.

Okeechobee was able to rally back and keep the score close until the end, but they were ultimately defeated 42-30.

BThe Brahmans wrestlers are currently 14-7 in dual meets.

Okeechobee had three wrestlers go undefeated on in the dual at Centennial, Felix Brege, Travis McKenna and Gordon Trimble.

“We will continue preparing for the districts tournament with three weigh ins,” said Jahner of the next steps for the Brahman wrestlers. “We start the week off with a home match against Sebastian River at 6 p.m. in the OHS gym. Thursday we travel to Sebring to take part in a tri-match with Sebring, Avon Park and Lake Placid. Finally on Saturday the JV wrestlers will head to South Fork for a individual tournament.

Richard Marion is a staff writer and photographer at Lake Okeechobee News and can be reached at rmarion@newszap.com.

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