NEIC is a ‘big deal’ for Chickasaws
Given the choice, New Hampton/Turkey Valley obviously would take winning a state wrestling championship over claiming the Northeast Iowa Conference tournament title.
But that doesn’t mean this Saturday’s tournament in Waverly isn’t important to the Chickasaws.
“It’s a big deal for me and it’s a big deal for our guys,” NH/TV coach Nick Hemann said. “It’s definitely right up there when it comes to our team goals. It’s been too long, way too long.”
The Chickasaws have won the last three NEIC dual-meet titles but haven’t claimed a conference tournament title since 2004; instead Waverly-Shell Rock comes into the tournament as the 13-time — yes, 13-time — defending champion.
And the Go-Hawks are the team most people expect will give New Hampton a battle for the title Saturday, although Hemann believes Crestwood should also be listed among the favorites.
“In my mind, it’s between us three,” he said. “The other four teams, though, can have a say in this thing, too. It’s probably as a spoiler for one of us three, but the thing we have to focus on is just us. If we wrestle the way we’re capable of, we can win this thing. We just got to go out and do it.”
--For the records of the Chickasaws will likely compete on Saturday, please see the Jan. 26 Tribune.