The Westminster Christian Academy wrestling Wildcats head into Saturday’s St. Charles West Tournament fresh off winning the Metro League Tournament.
The Wildcats hosted the league meet. Westminster finished first with 143 points. Priory’s second-place total was 126.
Six Wildcats won their weight class while two others came in second. Last year, Westminster had no individual champions.
Westminster coach Jacob Wadley likes how is team is performing.
“We are in a position of progression. Our expectations are to not have any excuse,” Wadley said. “We walked out of last year’s Metro League Tournament knowing that the talent we had returning this year was more than enough to win this year. Our opportunity to grow is right in front of us every day.
“We performed as expected for the tournament. It’s always our goal to be free of anxiety and flow in the moment.”
It’s the first Metro League Tournament championship for the program since 2014, Wadley said.
At 195 pounds, Westminster’s Caelleb Crutcher won by pin fall over Ethan Stevenson, of MICDS.
“Caelleb Crutcher was able to lay fear aside and showcase his ability to seize the moments,” Wadley said. “With two stylish pins, he captured one of six individual WCA gold medals.”
The other Wesminster weight class champions were Nolan Jones at 132, Benjamin Van Zee at 138, . Brett St. John at 145, Mark Stump at 152, and Kirk Briden at 160. Jones defeated Lucas Bagwell of Principia. Van Zee got past Noah Buitron, of Principia. St. John defeated Amaan Banga, of John Burroughs. Stump beat Gabriel Gross, of Priory. Briden topped Jacob Warrick, of Principia.
Coming in second was Wesley Rye at 106. He lost to Reuben Goldschmidt, of Priory. At 182, the Wildcats’ Roger Jinkins lost to Timothy Soriano, of Priory, in the championship match.
“The growth that I am seeing makes me believe that if we have the guys that are currently on the team this year for next and they participate in the off season the amount that is available and being offered we would set a school record for most state medals earned in a season,” Wadley said. “At this pace, we will do it with the smallest team in school history as well.
“That would be an influential change agent to the eyes outside of the WCA walls in favor of the program. (We are) Always excited for the favor God has in store.”
The weekend, the Wildcats will take part in the St. Charles West Tournament. There are 18 teams in it. Competing will be De Smet, Eureka, Fort Zumwalt West, Francis Howell, Hannibal, Lift For Life, Lutheran St. Charles, Oakville, Parkway North, Ritenour, Rock Bridge, Seckman, St. Charles West, Timberland and Waynesville along with Westminster.
The following weekend, Westminster will take part in the two-day Eric Lewis Tournament at MICDS. Teams in the 20-team field are Alton, Cahokia, Chaminade, De Soto, Francis Howell North, Hazelwood West, Kirkwood, Ladue, McCluer North, McCluer South-Berkeley, MICDS, Orchard Farm, Pacific, Ritenour, St. Louis University High, St. Charles, St. Charles West, Union, Westminster Christian Academy and Whitfield.