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The Rambler

Sanders Wins Heavyweight Title

Caleb+Sanders+and+Atlantic%27s+John+McConkey+handed+each+other+their+only+losses+on+the+season.
Caleb Sanders and Atlantic's John McConkey handed each other their only losses on the season.

Caleb Sanders and Atlantic's John McConkey handed each other their only losses on the season.

Photo by Keana West

Photo by Keana West

Caleb Sanders and Atlantic's John McConkey handed each other their only losses on the season.

Parson Covington, Editor

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For the second time in the last three years, a Ram wrestler was crowned champion at the state wrestling tournament.

Senior Caleb Sanders wrestled his way to a title in the Class 3A 285 weight class with a 3-2 decision over Dubuque Hempstead’s Dylan Olson. Sanders is Coach Brad Asche’s second state champion and third finalist, all coming in the last three years.

After defeating Olson in the final, Sanders familiar joking personality came out.

“Caleb was smiling from ear to ear and he gave a wave to the crowd with the fake finger hand that Coach Gregory carries with him,” said Asche, referring to a miniature plastic hand that he places on his finger.

Asche believed Sanders was well deserving of his state title, due to his dedication to the sport.

“Caleb has a good work ethic. He is a quiet, humble kid that is a multi sport athlete. He works hard in the weight room and is determined to break records,” said Asche.
Sanders quiet demeanor and stiff competition throughout the season helped to carry him.

“He has a mental edge over competitors with his quiet personality and his ability to motivate himself because he is tough to score on and stronger than all of them,” said Asche. “His toughest competition was [John] McConkey and his practice partner Dillon Wiser, who is also one of the top heavyweights in the state.”

McConkey, the Class 2A State Champ from Atlantic, and Sanders handed each other their only losses on the year.

To prepare themselves for the state tournament, the two wrestled each other in the week prior. This proved to work, as they both came out on top of the podium in their respective classes.

Sanders finished his senior season with a 45-3 record. The state title was the heavyweight’s 150th career victory.

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