Each season, some of the top teams in Class B convene in Boys Town for what amounts to the kind of early-season measuring stick that’s tough to find.
That will be the case again this weekend when the two-day Boys Town Invitational features many Class B elites.
Defending champion Omaha Skutt headlines a field that crowned nine of 14 state champions last season in Class B.
“This tournament tends to have a state tournament type of feel,” Boys Town co-coach Mike Petry said. “If you place in the top few here, you have a great chance at state.”
Although Petry and Cheik Fall are in their first year at the helm of the Cowboys, this won’t be the first Boys Town Invitational for either.
Petry has been an assistant coach at the school since 1999. Fall has been on the staff the last few seasons after wrestling at Boys Town in high school.
Boys Town has crowned a state champion in all but one season since 2003, when Fall won the Class B 171-pound title. In six of those nine years, the Cowboys had more than one champ.
But they’re less experienced than usual this season. The only returning medalist from last season is Kim Hammond, a sophomore who finished sixth a year ago.
“We have a really young group of kids,” Petry said. “A lot of inexperience, but they’re really hard-working kids. We can push them, push them and no one breaks. Hopefully next year, some of these kids will be awfully good.”
Grand Island heading to Kearney once again
For the second consecutive weekend, Class A’s defending champions will wrestle in Kearney.
Saturday’s East-West Duals will feature Grand Island, winner of last weekend’s Kearney Invitational and each of the last four Class A team titles.
The Islanders put seven in the finals and crowned five champions in their first tournament of the season last weekend.
Kearney — which finished fifth last weekend — is hosting the tournament, with Lincoln East, Millard North, Omaha Creighton Prep also part of the field.
Omaha Burke, one of the favorites in Class A, will be in Jefferson City, Mo. for the Missouri Duals. The Bulldogs won the Grain Valley (Mo.) Invite last weekend.
Other Omaha-area tournaments include meets at Omaha South and Bellevue East on Friday and Saturday, respectively.
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