By Ryan Murken
Your Prep Sports
The City High wrestling team put together the biggest three-day stretch for the program in more than a decade last week.
It was the smallest guy in the City High lineup that kept coming up huge during the impressive stretch for the resurgent Little Hawks.
Sophomore 106 pounder Ethan Wood-Finley capped a 5-0 week with his first Mississippi Valley Conference title as City High won the MVC Valley Division regular season title and the MVC Super meet in a span of three days.
“It was a big week for me but more for our team,” Wood-Finley said. “We have some momentum and now we want to keep that going.”
Wood-Finley posted a pair of pins on Thursday to help City High sweep a MVC double dual with Dubuque Senior and Dubuque Hempstead to lock up it’s first MVC regular season title since 2006.
Two days later the sophomore 106 pounder went 3-0 on his way to claiming the first MVC individual title of his career.
The 106-pound title by Wood-Finley on Saturday helped City High edge five-time defending champion Cedar Rapids Prairie for its first Super Meet title since 2002.
“I was born in 2001 so its been a long time since City High won this,” Wood-Finley said. “It’s huge for our team.”
Wood-Finley edged Teme Larson of Waterloo West 4-2 in the quarterfinals and won a 3-0 decision over tenth-ranked Bailey Roybal of Cedar Falls in the semifinals.
“I had some tough matches so it was good to be able to win a tournament like this,” Wood-Finley said. “It feels really good and it feels good to be able to help our team.”
He needed just 68 seconds to pin Cedar Rapids Prairie sophomore Austin Kegley in the 106-pound title match.
“When he goes out there and he attacks great things happen,” City High coach Cory Connell said of Wood-Finley. “That’s all we focus on with him is go out there and compete and wrestle hard.”
Wood-Finley went 30-18 in his varsity debut season last year, finishing third at the MVC meet and the District meet, missing a trip to the state meet by one win.
This season he has become a force in the 106 pound slot for the Little Hawks.
Ranked ninth in Class 3A at 106 pounds, Wood-Finley is 35-4 on the season and has won his last 13 matches.
All four losses for Wood-Finley have come to wrestlers ranked in the top six in Class 3A or 2A.
“He’s a tough kid, he is a really tough kid,” Connell said. “He puts his head down and just goes to work every single day. I’m so proud of that kid.”