With best numbers in years, Wave wrestling eyes return to state

Fallon junior Sean Reeder returns to this year’s wrestling team, which is seeing the highest numbers in coach Trevor deBraga’s seven years at the helm.

Fallon junior Sean Reeder returns to this year’s wrestling team, which is seeing the highest numbers in coach Trevor deBraga’s seven years at the helm.

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Churchill County is fielding the most wrestlers since Trevor deBraga took over the program seven years ago. While most are underclassmen, that doesn’t mean his team lacks experience.

Boasting a roster that fills every weight class, thanks in part to 12 freshmen and six sophomores, this year’s Greenwave will look to make an immediate impact as it continues through this month’s tournament schedule, which has included the season-opening Earl Wilkens single-day tournament and last weekend’s Mustang Stampede in Las Vegas.

“I don’t want to say this is a building year but it has those qualities. We are very young,” deBraga said. “We have a ton of freshmen, which is great, but about 95 percent of them have wrestled in the past so that’s a big bonus.”

After hosting the first tournament of the year, deBraga said there were positives and opportunities for improvement, including conditioning and avoiding pins.

“We got into some situations that we haven’t gone over yet, and we did some good things, also, that we haven’t gone over yet and that’s attributed to the team’s prior experience,” said deBraga, who’s assisted by Dan Shaw, Darren Lewis, Tyler Diaz, Frank deBraga and Trent deBraga. “We have to cut down on the pins. When we get on our backs you have to fight like a bat out of hell and not get pinned. Now that we got the first tournament under our belts, we can see what kind of intensity we have to bring to the practice room and I know the kids saw that. We will get to have more intense practices now that we are done teaching technique and can really push the pace and work on the moves at a higher level.”

Thanks to Wade Workman and Evan Brandt revitalizing the Fallon Outlaws youth wrestling program and the continued growth of the Greenwave Youth Wrestling Club, the high school program is in its best shape in years. With 31 wrestlers, deBraga has been able to fill every one of the 14 weight classes for the first time since Fallon won state in 2016.

“I truly believe it’s the feeder programs that contribute to that,” said deBraga, who added the importance at the middle school level. “They’re getting kids interested and keeping them interested so that they want to wrestle when they get to the high school level. COVID may play a part in it as these kids were stripped away from some athletics for a couple seasons, so they’re anxious to get back out and compete.”

DeBraga will look to veterans Steven Moon, a senior who finished second at state last season, and juniors Jaiden McFadden, Cade McKnight and Troy Shelton.

“Like the past, leadership can be brought to the room by any of the kids. Grade level doesn’t matter and I don’t always look to seniors to be leaders,” deBraga said. “These are all returning kids and know what I expect and have been good these last few weeks and the young wrestlers are being held to that.”

Even with the young team, deBraga’s eying a state championship. And that begins with intense practices with difficult tournaments, like this weekend’s Reno Tournament of Champions and the Sierra Nevada Classic in two weeks, sandwiched in between.

“No matter the quality or quantity of kids I have, that’s the goal and as coaches, we push the kids to be the best on the mat and in the classroom,” deBraga said. “I hope to qualify for state a kid in each of the 14 weight classes and be able to compete for a state championship.”

Greenwave wrestling roster

  • 106 - Manuel Barros, Fr.
  • 113 - Evan Mackuliak, Fr.
  • 120 - Maximilian Dahl, Fr.
  • 126 - Carson Melendy, Fr.; Chase Ackerman, Fr.; Andre Green, Fr.
  • 132 - Jaiden McFadden, Jr.; Nathaniel Zackery, So.
  • 138 - Dustin Stritenberger, Fr.; Lonnie Adams, So., Isiah Diaz, Sr.
  • 150 - Manuel Karaway, So.; Jeremiah Prinz, Sr.; Kolby McFadden, Fr.
  • 157 - Quentin Hornbeak, Jr.; Misael Vera, So.
  • 165 - Thayne Hatch, Sr.; Ashton Christy, Fr.; Troy Shelton, Jr.; Macray O’Neill, Jr.; Caden McKnight, Jr.
  • 175 - Kacin Rogne, Fr.; Colton Blankenship, So.; Lucas Costagliola, Sr.; Carlos Valenzuela, Fr.
  • 190 - Joseph Romero, Fr.; Dustan Drinkut, Sr.; Kade Morales, Jr.; Steven Moon, Sr.
  • 215 - Michele Grossi, Sr.; Tyson Wilson, So.
  • 285 - Sean Reeder, Jr.


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