Evart wrestling program boasting high numbers

EVART — Evart is enjoying some good numbers in its wrestling program this year.

Saturday at the Big Rapids Cardinal Invitational, the Wildcats also enjoyed a win.

They were 1-4 with a 42-27 win over Hopkins. They lost to Big Rapids, Muskegon Orchard View, East Kentwood and Grand Rapids West Catholic

Top wrestlers included Dayzi Ferns (112), who was 2-3, Jonah Smith (160) who was 2-1, and Jacob Kleeves (140), who was 3-2.

“We had impressive performances across the board,” Evart coach Ryan Hopkins said. “It was a huge step up from Wednesday’s meet.”

Evart was at Manton on Wednesday and lost to the host school while defeating Forest Area.

“We have huge numbers,” Hopkins said.

It’s Evart’s third year with a wrestling program but the Wildcats usually came with anywhere from only four to eight wrestlers at matches in previous seasons.

“We have huge numbers, a huge increase,” Hopkins said. “We have 20 kids. There’s a lot of newcomers again, but the kids are catching on very fast and doing very well. They have big hearts, absolutely.”

Evart is home on Wednesday against Pine River at the middle school, with action starting at 6 p.m.

“We pretty much have a full schedule,” Hopkins said. “That will be our first home meet since 1961.”

Evart will at the Chippewa Hills Joe Loren Invitational on Saturday.

The Wildcats also are scheduled to wrestle at Chippewa Hills on Dec. 20 in a multi-team meet.

“We’re taking a couple of voids right now, and looking for some kids to get to weight,” Hopkins said. “We still have a couple of gaps. But we have a lot of weight classes filled right now.”