Meet pumps up wrestling rivals

Wednesday, December 15, 2004 | 12:00 a.m. CST; updated 6:30 p.m. CDT, Saturday, June 28, 2008

Rock Bridge wrestler Jason Richards described Tuesday’s dual meet against rival Hickman as “the biggest match of the season.”

Although Richards thought the meet was huge, Hickman’s K.C. Pescaglia treated it the same as any other match.

“I always go into every match the same, trying to win,” Pescaglia said.

Hickman’s Zach Arnold said he doesn’t care who he will be wrestling when preparing for a meet, but admitted it would have meant a lot to beat Rock Bridge and earn bragging rights.

With the 50-25 win, the Bruins beat Hickman for the third year in a row. The Kewpies managed to score points in only two of the meet’s final 10 matches.

Bruins coach John Kopnisky said preparing for the meet against Hickman is no different from other matches, at least from the coaches’ perspective. But Kopnisky said if Monday’s practice was any indicator, his wrestlers were pumped up for the Kewpies.

“Our seniors were letting our freshmen know that this is very important,” Kopnisky said. “Monday’s practice was very intense. The seniors made sure that these young guys understood how much this means to Rock Bridge. Getting a victory like this is just fantastic.”

Richards said there was extra motivation to win.

“There was a little more pressure with this meet,” Richards said. “Hickman’s always been the bigger school, always been a little better than us. We’re smaller and a little newer. We shut them up tonight.”

Hickman coach J.D. Coffman said it was hard for him to tell the emotional level of some of his wrestlers, but he knew his wrestlers were ready for Rock Bridge.

“They definitely had the right mindset going in that they wanted to win,” Coffman said.

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