By Kim Staudinger
The Havre High wrestlers made five changes to the lineup this week in hopes of taking a divisional title.
K.P. Fisher moved from 160 pounds to 152 with Chad Seely taking Fisher's place at 160 pounds. Jake Szudera is moving from 140 pounds to 135 pounds with Adam Jensen moving up to 140 pounds to take Szudera's place. Rounding out the changes is Chad Zuelke at 145 pounds. Other wrestlers making the trip to Livingston are Kevin Velk at 98 pounds, Jeff Hedges at 105, Scott Sheppard at 112, Mike Sutherland at 119, Drew Harlow at 125, Chad Hedges at 130, Garrett Hanson at 171, Nick Johnson at 189, and Mike Schnittgen at heavyweight.
Head coach Scott Filius said he hopes to be able to take 12 to 14 wrestlers to the state tournament this year, as the competition at state will be very tough.
"We should be favored going into divisionals," Filius said, noting he doesn't see anyone else giving the Ponies heavy competition and that Dillon and Browning have the next deepest squads. "I would like the kids to just compete like they did against Conrad and wrestle tough whether they are winning or losing."
The top five wrestlers from each weight class will go to state. Some weight classes will have six wrestlers, but which weights are unknown until after the divisional tournament.
Filius expects five wrestlers to get the number one seed going into the state tournament Schnittgen, Jeff Hedges, Chad Hedges, Hanson and Fisher. Both Jeff and Chad Hedges are currently ranked number one in the Class A wrestling poll with Hanson also at the top. Fisher is second at 160, Velk is fourth at 98, Szudera fourth at 140 and Schnittgen fifth at heavyweight.
"If we place those seven kids where (the poll has) those kids ranked, we'll do fine," Filius said. "We should have some pretty good matches. It seems like every team has a couple good kids."
At this time in the year, Filius said the philosophy is simple.
"Either you go out and get it done or you go out and don't get it done. It's a pretty simple game really," he said.