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McCarthy faces rebuilding year with Carson wrestling

Tim McCarthy is stepping into a situation that he’s never really had to deal with before heading into his third tour of duty as the head coach of Carson High’s wrestling team.

At least for the 2008-2009 season, the Senators aren’t expected to be in the upper echelon in the Northern 4A, a place that’s always been reserved for them in the past.

“Just talking to other coaches and other people, we aren’t mentioned,” said McCarthy about not being among the top teams. “And I would have to agree with that.”

McCarthy coached the Senators from 1994 to 2002 and again for one season in 2004-2005.

A big reason for the lower expectations for the Senators this year is they have only one returning state qualifier from last season in Nick Schlager, who took third at the NIAA 4A State Championships a year ago. But the cupboard isn’t exactly empty for CHS as it has eight wrestlers coming into this year with varsity experience.

And while McCarthy admitted staying among the North’s elite “might not happen this year,” he fully expects that the program will definitely have its customary place among the North’s top teams in the near future. McCarthy said this year’s team can’t be counted out.

“I think we’ll definitely be a better team at the end of the year,” he said. “We have the makings of a good team. It’s good to be back. A lot of the things are still the same. The kids are still the same.”

And under McCarthy there’s already an increase in the number of wrestlers who have come out as the program has about 30 wrestlers.

“We’ve got our numbers back up,” McCarthy said.

The lineup will include sophomore Pat Craugh at 103 pounds, who returns after wrestling at the weight as a freshman. McCarthy said Craugh is a possible state qualifier (the top three at zone qualify for state) and should be one of the better 103 pounders in the North.

At 112 will be freshman Austin Brown while Ricardo Urgarte, another possible state qualifier, returns at 119.

“He should be one of the top Northern Nevada 119 pounders,” McCarthy said.

Schlager is at 125 and looks to make a run at a state title after finishing third last year.

“He could be the top guy,” McCarthy said.

Schlager could receive a tough test on Saturday in the Capitol City Duals in a dual match with Lowry. The Buckaroos have Jace Billingsley, who beat the reigning 4A state champion as an eighth grader, at 125.

Adam Welch is another returning veteran at 130 and could be another possible state qualifier.

“He’s got some good quickness,” McCarthy said. “He knows how to keep in good position.”

Newcomer Brandon Patterson is at 135 while Bryce Landolt, a freshman transfer from Oregon who has freestyle and Greco-Roman wrestling experience, will be at 140.

“He’s definitely the most seasoned freshman we have,” McCarthy said.

Sophomore Jimmy Weir is at 145 while Brett Allen is at 152. Allen, who has varsity experience, returns to the team after not wrestling last year and McCarthy said he’s another possible state qualifier.

For now, Jae Chun is at 160, but another one of Carson’s top wrestlers and another possible state qualifer, Junior Valladares will move down to 160. Right now Valladares is at 171 where Luke Carter will eventually take over.

At 189 is Justin Steele, a returning varsity wrestler, who missed much of last season with a skin infection. Steele will be battling with Ryan Hoskins for the spot at 189.

Newcomer Justin Barlow will be at 215 and Max Schadeck returns at heavyweight.

“He could make some noise this year,” said McCarthy about Schadeck. “He should have a good year.”

Carson opened the season with a Sierra League dual match against Manogue and the league will be brutal this year as the Senators will have to face Northern 4A powers Damonte Ranch, Fallon, Douglas and Galena.

The Senators will also be tested on Saturday in their Capitol City Duals at Morse Burley Gym. Along with Lowry, CHS will also face Galena, North Valleys and Wooster in its pool. In the other pool will be Manogue, Douglas, Fallon, Reno High and Spanish Springs. Wrestling will begin at 9 a.m. with the finals set for 4:30 p.m.