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Prep wrestling preview: Cloquet-Esko-Carlton Lumberjacks

The 2022 Lumberjacks have a strong cast of up and coming wrestlers and returners, but winning duals will be an uphill battle as a result of multiple empty weight classes.

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CEC junior Deeken Fjeld works to turn over Rush City/Braham's Kaden Gorman during a match Tuesday, Feb. 2. (Jamey Malcomb / Pine Journal)

Head coach: Alan Denman

Assistant coaches: Cody Salo and Jake Fjeld

Returning wrestlers: Aiden Reuvers, Damion Newcomb, Brodie Wilson, Carter Horvat, Bodon Fjeld and Deeken Fjeld.

New Faces: Cavin Fjeld, Aiden Theisen, Brendon Malloy, Jack Horvat, Kaiden High, Memphis Magdzas and Alex Comer.

"Female wrestling was added this year for section and state tournament play. Our two new female wrestlers are Morgan Browne (and) Kloe Jensen. Our managers are Kenna Horvat and Clara Wheale (indispensable members of this team)," coach Alan Denman said.

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Team Strengths: "Everyone on this team is dedicated to each other and all have shown they are willing to put in the time and hard work to improve," Denman said. "We are a very young team, and their potential as a team and as individuals won’t be evident for another two or three years. When our wrestlers compete against others of similar age, we are more than competitive."

Biggest Challenge: "This team will have to frequently face full squads of wrestling teams that are more mature than they are. We will be careful to avoid sending our developing wrestlers too soon against those opponents," Denman said. "This team will, for the time being, have to endure losing dual meets from giving up team points for too (many) empty weight classes."

Coach's assessment

"Our focus will be to provide the best competition opportunities for their development and preserve their passion for wrestling," Denman said. "We are always looking to recruit new males and females into the sport of wrestling, because we know how it dramatically increases their athletic skills and character. We are helping everyone on the team to take the long view and help them understand how to prepare now for the days when they will be a very competitive group."

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