LUSK – Niobrara County High School head wrestling coach Ron Nelson and assistants JD Wasserburger, Andrew Wasserburger and John Thayer hosted the team banquet last week.
Seniors Jasper Caldera, James Cushman and manager Camdon Fitzwater all earned their white letter for four years of varsity. Caldera was the high-point man (4.4 pts per match), had the most takedowns (1.5 per match) and voted team captain. The Black Hills State signee tied with sophomore Colton Coffman for best record, as both finished 31-6. Caldera and Fitzwater were honored with the Coaches Award from Nelson and his assistants. Cushman was off to an 8-0 start before a shoulder injury derailed his season too early.
Junior Sean Johnson earned his first varsity letter with a third-place finish at regionals and a state qualifier. Coffman and Miles Ashurst collected their second letter and are two-time state qualifiers. Coffman won the most pins award (0.6 pins per match) while classmate/manager Jazmin Ladwig earned her first varsity letter.
Freshmen Gabe Matthews, David West and Stanton Ricketts are all first-time letter winners.
Matthews was named outstanding prospect, and West was most improved. Gabe finished fifth in his first state tournament, while David placed sixth. Ricketts suffered a late-season injury and unable to wrestle at regionals or state.
Caldera, Ashurst and Coffman were named to the All-SEWAC team, and Coffman followed his state championship in 2020 with a fourth-place finish in 2021.