NEW PORT RICHEY - In prep wrestling, there are 14 weight classes that make up a team event. But when one of those classes has someone fail to make the proper weight, a coach then has to juggle his lineup so much that it affects more than one weight.
That is what happened to Central Head Coach Roy Reyes Wednesday afternoon when his teams lost a duel meet against River Ridge, 52-26.
The Bears had one of their wrestlers fail to make the proper weight and because of that, Reyes had to juggle his lineup so much that it may have cost his team a win.
"We had a real close duel meet with them last year, so I knew it was going to be close," said the second-year Reyes. "Then we had one guy fail to make weight and now you start off behind and we had to bump some people up to cover for it."
The match, which took place in front of the Royal Knights' student body, started off well for the Bears as Nathan Brazeau bested Anthony Soto at 215 pounds, 6-1.
After that the Royal Knights received five straight wins to take a 28-3 lead before Central rallied.
The Bears' comeback began as Antonio Zeyas pinned Dennis Saunders at 5:15 to win at 130 pounds, Vince Ramirez pinned John Baccanco at 3:37 at 135 and Shaun Cadoret pinned Jason Jones in 3:37 at 140.
"We started off with a huge deficit but then we got a couple of wins and were getting some momentum," said Reyes. "But then we hit those weight classes where we had to bump some people up a weight class and that cost us. We had to use Tom Adams at 160, and in front of all those kids it was his first varsity match ever."
Even though his team lost, Reyes thought having to wrestle against so many people who would boo every move was a positive environment for his club.
"It was a good thing to have a match with a lot of people in attendance," said the Bears' skipper. "I hope we can do the same thing next year at our place. It's something they won't forget for the rest of their lives."
Reyes also said he hopes he can get some people to step up in certain weight classes.
"We have some weight classes that are locked down and we can depend on those guys," insisted Reyes. "I need the other half to step up and show that they want to be the man."
In the next three weeks, the Central wrestling team has three important tournaments on its schedule.
The Bears will compete in the Citrus Invitational today and next week they'll be at the Hernando High Kiwanis Invitational, both of which are individual tournaments.
Then on Dec. 14-15, CHS will travel to New Port Richey for the Gulf High Duals Tournament.