Felder, Monroe wrestlers have high hopes

Josh Felder placed seventh in the Class 4A 220-pound division at last season’s Mat Classic, and the Monroe wrestler has his sights set higher this season. The senior has lost just one match so far and is ranked second in the state by washingtonwrestlingreport.com.

“He’s an athletic 220,” Bearcats coach Mark Dalbeck said. “He’s uber-competitive, and he always gives us 100 percent. He’s not fancy. He’s not going to wow you with a bunch of crazy moves you learn at a camp. He just brawls.”

Dalbeck said that in a best-case scenario, Felder will be joined at Mat Classic by six or seven of his teammates, including a trio of wrestlers who advanced to the regional round last season — Brock Rice, Isaac Cirillo and Thomas Stieler. The Bearcats placed third at the 14-team Mariner Holiday Tournament on Dec. 3, won the 12-team Wildcat Invite in LaCenter on Dec. 10, and sport a 4-0 record in dual meets.

“We’ve had a good season to this point, and now we’re getting back a couple of guys who had been injured,” Dalbeck said. “They’re more focused than I thought they’d be compared to groups that we’ve had in the past. Some of them have surprised themselves.”

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