PLEASANT HILL, Mo. — The coveted three-peat is attainable.
Boys wrestlers at Pleasant Hill High School may soon be headed for their third consecutive Missouri Class Two Championship, and to their opponents’ chagrin, they’re getting better as the year goes on.
Pleasant Hill’s wrestling program has four state championships, beginning with the school’s first state title from 1989.
In 2023, Coach Jeff Wyatt’s wrestlers are on a familiar path, ranked number one in their class, according to MissouriWrestling.com. Pleasant Hill is ranking high in recent tournaments and dual meets, depending on their top performers for points. Wyatt, who is in his 13th season as Roosters coach, says they’re still adding to their physical conditioning and mental toughness.
“It really doesn’t matter to us where they put us. We’re going to go to state and compete and do the best we can. Our goal is to overachieve and that’s what our goal is every year,” Wyatt said.
The seven seniors on this year’s team believe they have the right stuff again. Six seniors graduated from last year’s championship squad. If 2023 turns out to be less than perfect, the future looks strong, since the Hill has 14 freshman still in the game.
“I think we’ll be at the top. That’s not being cocky or anything,” Sam Ewing, Pleasant Hill’s 144-pound wrestler, said. “We’re all just as hungry as we were when we first walked in here as freshmen, and we’re ready to go get it done this year.”
“Coach Wyatt talks about the big target on our back. We don’t shy away from it. We like the attention. We want people to look at us as the next tier up,” Jacob Hanes, Roosters 215-pound wrestler, said.
The MSHSAA State Wrestling Tournament is coming up on February 22nd. Pleasant Hill will host a dual meet against Odessa on Tuesday. The Bulldogs are ranked just behind Pleasant Hill at number two in the Class Two rankings.