TROY — It’s a feeling that puts Troy High wrestling coach Jon Thomas at ease.
When the lower weights start their turns going to the mat, Thomas knows that, the vast majority of the time, it’ll be one of his wrestlers coming out on top.
“I know when we have that part of the lineup come up, we’re going to win 90 percent of the time. Those guys get it done most of the time for us,” Thomas said.
The Colts have seven returning starters from a team that won its first team district championship last season since 2010. Six of the returnees wrestle in the 103-145 range.
At press time, the Colts were 10-6 overall and 2-0 in the Oakland Activities Association Blue Division. Troy is on pace to end its division championship drought. The Colts haven’t won the division since 2000.
“We expected this. We’ve had our eye on the league championship. We did drop to a lower division, but a league championship is a league championship. I think we’re the team to beat, and that’s what we’ve been shooting for,” Thomas said.
The coach also said that the district title won last season helped build momentum heading into this year.
“That was a big self-esteem boost for all the guys and a motivating factor in the offseason,” Thomas said. “Those guys came back and are tougher than they’ve ever been.”
Juniors Kevin Thomas and Andrew Ellicott lead the team.
Thomas is 23-4 overall at 103 pounds, and Ellicott is 22-6 overall at 14.
“(Ellicott) has been doing great this year. He really turned it on and is a junior captain,” Thomas said. “We haven’t had a junior captain in a while, but he’s doing that good and working that hard. I think he has potential to go all the way.”
Thomas also believes that the Colts won’t be going away any time soon. With three seniors on the roster, he expects to have 11 returning starters next season.
“I wouldn’t call us young, but we’ll be back again next year,” he said. “We’re ready to start snowballing — getting better and better each year. That’s the goal.”