Rossville’s second-year wrestling coach, Mike Fadness, has enjoyed the luxury of coaching his two sons, senior Trenton and freshman Tyler, this year. Sometimes that has benefits, and sometimes, well, high school kids act like high school kids and show off their stubborn side once in awhile.
The elder Fadness experienced that Wednesday, when he kicked Tyler off the mat during practice.
“I told him to get off because the effort he was giving me in practice didn’t match what the rest of the other wrestlers gave,” Mike Fadness said. “I don’t know if it was because he thought it was his dad yelling or what. I really have to be harder on them than the other kids at times.
“That, by far, is the toughest part of coaching. Sometimes I don’t think I get the full effort out of them. I always wonder that if someone else was coaching them, they’d get more effort out of them.”
But, despite the trials and tribulations of coaching his two kids, there are some joys that come out of it.
“The good aspect is being able to be with my two boys,” Mike Fadness said. “The whole team grows as a family. A lot of them care for each other and you can see it. To be part of that with my two boys, especially with Trent being a senior, it’s been special.”
Neither of the Fadness boys is seeded to advance out of Saturday’s Lafayette Jeff Sectional, but both are capable of pulling the upset.
A variety of changes to Rossville’s roster has left the Hornets with a relatively small roster heading into the postseason. They’ll send eight wrestlers: freshman Tyler Fadness (106), sophomore Adam Easterday (132), senior Trenton Fadness (138), sophomore Austin Rangel (145), sophomore Shayden Hughes (152), sophomore Jocey Martin (170), junior Jake Guffey (182) and sophomore Billy Dotson (220).
Of the eight, only one – Guffey (14-12) – is seeded to advance to the regional at fourth. The top four wrestlers in each sectional advance to next week’s regional at Logansport.
Guffey started the season at 195 pounds and moved down one weight class halfway through the season. Guffey had put together a solid win streak before Saturday’s Hoosier Heartland Conference Tournament, where he lost both of his matches despite being the No. 2 seed.
“He had the worst wrestling day of the year and I couldn’t put a finger on it as to why,” Mike Fadness said. “He’s really coming into this tournament not on a good note. Now, with that said, the heart of a champion is measured by how you come back from a defeat.”
If there’s any wrestler that could spring the upset, it’s Trenton Fadness (15-10). A regional qualifier last year, he could get there again if a couple breaks go his way – including an upset of Lafayette Jeff’s Matt Grammer (23-16) in his first match. A win there would put him in a better spot in the wrestlebacks if he beats Grammer and loses his next match to Carroll’s Bradley Leonard – who’s undefeated on the season.
Trent Fadness’s record is deceiving because he missed the back end of a two-day invitational and one full invitational with an injury.
“If he was wrestling the tournaments he was supposed to because of injury, his record would be almost identical to the guy he’s seeded against,” Mike Fadness said.
Rangel (12-8), seeded sixth at 145, has had a few shining moments this season but the 145-weight class is competitive – with the top seed, Aaron Madison of Delphi, holding a 17-16 record. Seeds 2-5 have winning percentages well above Rangel.
Tyler Fadness (24-12) and Easterday (26-10) are seeded fifth in their respective weight classes. Tyler Fadness wrestles West Lafayette’s Jeffery Cassell (19-8) in the first round.
“He’s a scrapper, an underweight 106,” said Mike of Tyler. “He weights 95-96 pounds sopping wet. He gives up a lot of weight but he’s done well.”
Easterday grapples Lafayette Jeff’s TJ Robinson (27-13) in his opener.
“(Adam’s) peaked at the right time and he’s a good enough wrestler,” Mike Fadness said. “He’s already wrestled (Robinson) earlier in the year and he’s definitely not the wrestler he was at the beginning of the year.”
Trenton Fadness eyeing advancement at sectionals
Rossville senior Trenton Fadness takes a 15-10 record into Saturday’s Lafayette Jeff Sectional. Fadness, a 138-pounder, is eyeing advancement to the Logansport Regional for the second straight year.
Easterday No. 5 seed
Rossville sophomore Adam Easterday (132 pounds) is a No. 5 seed for Saturday’s Lafayette Jeff Sectional.