Soroco wrestling team splits duals |

Soroco wrestling team splits duals

Soroco High School sophomore Josh Baker gets the pin against Norwood's Colby Starks on Friday in a dual in Soroco. Baker went on to win three matches, although two were exhibitions.
Luke Graham

— On a night of just two small duals, nobody was busier — or better — than Soroco High School sophomore and 140-pounder Josh Baker.

Baker, who finished one match shy of the state tournament last season, was an iron man of sorts Friday in duals against Norwood and North Park.

Despite having just one of his three matches count — two were exhibition matches — Baker won in every way conceivable Friday and picked up Soroco’s lone head-to-head win.

“Josh doesn’t quit,” Rams coach Jay Whaley said. “It doesn’t matter what the score is. He just keeps plugging away, and then it’s we’ll see what happens at the end of three periods. You make a mistake when you’re tired, and he’ll take advantage of it.”

That certainly was the case Friday in two duals dotted with forfeits.

Norwood beat Soroco, 42-24, in the early dual, before Soro­co rebounded to beat North Park, 30-24.

Against North Park, Baker opened the dual with a second period pin of Norwood’s Colby Starks. Baker was up, 4-0, early in the second before catching Starks in a reverse for the pin.

Dalton McClung, Jaden Baker and Cody Constine lost matches for Soroco, while Col­ton Martindale, Lauryn Brug­­gink and Dillon Koler picked up wins via forfeit.

Against North Park, Soroco got all its points from forfeits, with McClung, Jaden Baker, Brug­­gink, Koler and Josh Baker picking up wins.

Although forfeits were the difference, Josh Baker provided the match of the night in his two exhibitions.

Against North Park’s Derrick Richard, Josh Baker fell behind, 9-2, before storming back. He cut it to 11-9 going into the third, before reversing from his back to get the eventual pin.

“He’s a tough kid,” Josh Baker said. “I’m glad I got to wrestle him. He’s definitely a tough kid, but I just caught him in one of his moves and got him to his back.”

Finally, against Norwood’s Weston Rasmussen, Baker held on to a 5-3 lead late in the third to take the match.

“I just worked through my moves like my coaches drill in practice,” Baker said. “I worked hard for the reversals and the pins were there.”

For Soroco, which was without four of its varsity wrestlers, Friday wasn’t necessarily about wins and losses. Whaley said at this point, he’s just more concerned with getting more time on the mat.

“I think half of what you saw was first time wrestlers and freshmen,” Whaley said. “Besides Josh, everyone is young. They just need time to get out there and learn. We just need mat time.”

Soroco continues action at 9 a.m. today when the team travels to West Grand for a tournament.

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