COLUMBIA - Maintaining a consistent body weight is hard work, especially for growing high school wrestlers.
All ten Columbia wrestlers won their first round matches.
Rock Bridge Class 4
Quinn Smith (126 pounds) won an 8-2 decision over Tarell Strader of Central (St. Joseph).
Jason Kiehne (132 pounds) won by pin over Connor Urevich (Holt).
Samuel Crane (138 pounds) won by pin over Cory Green (Lindbergh).
Kyle Johnston (160 pounds) won an 6-0 decision over William Michael (Fox).
Cody Maly (182) won by major decision of 13-5 over Wyatt Parker (Blue Springs South).
Hickman Class 4
Josiah Kline (106 pounds) won by pin over Matthew Graham (Mccluer North).
Alex Shea (145 pounds) won by pin over Jim Onder (St. Louis University).
J'Den Cox (285 pounds) won by pin over Tomasi Tuione (William Chrisman).
Tolton Class 1
Jaydin Clayton (132 pounds) won by pin over Austin Moudy (Marceline).
Will Tindal (160 pounds) won by pin over Spencer Matthews (O`Hara).
Quarterfinals will begin Friday. Class 1 begins at 9:30 a.m. and Class 4 begins at 1:30 p.m. Both semifinals will start at 6 p.m.
All five Rock Bridge state-qualifying wrestlers won their opening round matches Friday at Mizzou Arena, making their favorite snacks taste even sweeter afterwards.
After the wrestlers weigh in for the day, they are allowed to eat whatever they want, just as long as they can make weight the next day.
This has not been a problem for the Bruins all season according to head +coach Travis Craig. No one has missed weight this year.
"They know their bodies and what they need to do," Craig said. "We as a coaching staff rarely have to get on them about it."
For juniors Sam Crane and Jason Kiehne, the weight restrictions present an opportunity to enjoy some foods they normally wouldn't touch during the regular season.
Both wrestlers agreed that peanut butter and honey is the best way to go before a match. However, Kiehne says his guilty pleasure is skittles. He always eats a bag after a match. Crane is more likely to be snacking on a granola bar, but he says he's looking forward to about a week of off-season eating.
"I already have a list with about 30 things I can't wait to eat," Crane said with a laugh.
Maintaining such a specific weight in high school is no easy task, and both wrestlers acknowledge the temptation and frustration that comes along with such a strict diet.
Crane hardly eats lunch in Rock Bridge's cafeteria because he doesn't want to see everyone else eating whatever they want. He often leaves campus to each lunch at his own house.
In Kiehne's case, family and friends help him stay away from fatty temptations. His mother, Annette, will sometimes refrain from cooking dinner so the house doesn't smell. When the Kiehne's do cook for Jason, it's usually lean meats on the grill outside.
Both wrestlers acknowledged that other students are usually pretty respectful about not bothering them with food when they are cutting weight, but it does happen.
"You still get kids that walk up and ask if we want cookies or fries or something but usually they know the wrestlers can't eat that stuff," Kiehne said.
The wrestlers plan to get together after the state tournament at one of their houses to hang out...and eat, of course.
"I can't wait," Crane said. "There is going to be so much food."
At least until the state tournament concludes on Saturday night, food will come second to Rock Bridge's championship aspirations.