Iowa City High's Jacob Dykes focused on strong finish

Little Hawks handle C.R. Xavier, 66-9

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IOWA CITY — Jacob Dykes drew motivation from chasing higher ranked wrestlers last season.

He ascended the list as the wins mounted in a regular season that ended without a loss and maintained a perfect record, earning his second Class 3A state tournament berth.

The success was accompanied with some distractions, interfering with his focus at the end and contributing to a fifth-place finish at 195 pounds for Iowa City High.

“Toward the end of last season I let all the outside things — like interviews and being undefeated going into the state tournament — go to my head and relaxed a little,” Dykes said. “I did a good job throughout the season, so I want to keep a lot of it the same.”

The Little Hawk senior has produced another strong start to the regular season. Dykes improved to 8-0, scoring a pin in the opening bout of City High’s 66-9 victory over Cedar Rapids Xavier on Thursday night at City High.

Dykes scored 10 takedowns in the opening period, pinning Kyle Krezek in 2:13. None of his matches have gone the distance.

“He’s pinned everybody so far this season,” City High Coach Cory Connell said. “He’s attacking and attacking and fun to watch.

“The sky is the limit. When he’s attacking he’s unreal. I think the only person who can slow him down is himself.”

Dykes has realized the delicate balance between keeping loose during a tough season and concentrating on his effort. Something that was blurred earlier in the career of the two-time state qualifier.

“I think when it comes down to it my first two years wrestling I couldn’t tell the difference between having fun and wrestling,” Dykes said. “I wasn’t the greatest inside or outside the room when it came to focusing. Last year, I did a pretty good job of it.

“I think this year, keep on improving knowing when to work hard and when to have fun.”

The Little Hawks have received guidance from Dykes. They are 4-0 in duals and finished second to highly-rated Johnston on Saturday, placing 11 in the top three of the Newton Cardinal Classic.

“He’s done a really good job,” Connell said. “He’s been a good leader in the room.”

City High dominated the action Thursday night, owning a 34-6 takedown edge and 10-0 advantage in nearfall points. Heavyweight Jacob Murry, Michael Santoro (120), 138-pounder Joey Harney, Kyle Hefley (152) and Joe Ring at 170 all had pins for the Little Hawks.

“They are getting better,” said Connell, noting the Little Hawks beat Cedar Rapids Prairie and Cedar Falls last week. “I saw improvement from Thursday to Saturday and improvement from Saturday to (this Thursday).

“We’re not a finished product. We’re developing to be a lot better.”

Xavier’s Keegan Schultschik pinned Khurt Bacho in 45 seconds at 126. Ivan Thomas added a decision at 113 for the Saints (2-1).

AT IOWA CITY HIGH

Iowa City High 66, C.R. Xavier 9

(Individual takedowns in parentheses)

220 pounds — Jacob Dykes (ICH) pinned Kyle Krezek, 2:13 (10,0); Hwt. — Jacob Murry (ICH) pinned Isaac Ball, :10 (1,0); 106 — Ethan Wood-Finley (ICH) won by forfeit; 113 — Ivan Thomas (CRX) dec. Garrett Bormann, 7-3 (3,0); 120 — Michael Santoro (ICH) pinned Caelen Shannon, 3:38 (1,0); 126 — Keegan Schultschik (CRX) pinned Khurt Bacho, :45 (1,0); 132 — Lance Bormann (ICH) dec. Patrick Chambers, 8-4 (3,1); 138 — Joey Harney (ICH) pinned Ambrose Paduska, 1:45 (5,0); 145 — Jack Anson (ICH) won by forfeit; 152 — Kyle Hefley (ICH) pinned Clayton Drury, 3:47 (6,0); 160 — Wilfred Kadohou (ICH) dec. Garrett Ries, 12-5 (5,1); 170 — Joe Ring (ICH) pinned Ryan Cook, 1:30 (3,0); 182 — Brandon Lalla (ICH) won by forfeit; 195 — Jason Lemus (ICH) won by forfeit.

MEET STATISTICS

Takedowns — C.R. Xavier 6, City High 34. Reversals — C.R. Xavier 1, City High 1. Escapes — C.R. Xavier 25, City High 4. Nearfall points — C.R. Xavier 0, City High 10. Penalty points (awarded) — C.R. Xavier 0, City High 0. Total match points — C.R. Xavier 39, City High 84.

l Comments: (319) 368-8679; kj.pilcher@thegazette.com

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