Hawks on the brink of a strong wrestling season

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Matthew Felbaum defeats a wrestler from Shiloh High School at the Brookwood Invitational and was just one of the Hawks that secured a top finish. Latrice Williams/The Paper.

The Mill Creek High School wrestling team is looking to transform into an elite contender. The Hawks are under reconstruction and Head Coach Rodney Potter is hopeful they will continue to build on what they have.

The Hawks are loaded with more than 50 wrestlers this season and have a strong competitor in Marcos Rosenkjer, who, along with a few others, is expected to help guide MCHS throughout the season.

“Marcos Rosenkjer is a huge leader for us. He shows leadership, really commits himself and does what we want him to do during the offseason,” said Potter. “He’s currently at 132 pounds and he’s the No. 1 guy that started in the tournament for us.

“[We also have] Matthew [Felbaum] at 170. He had some starts this year,” said Potter. “Andrew [Klemm is] at 195 and John [Hollenback] is at 285.”

Potter is in his third season with the Hawks and noted his team is still trying to find their groove on the mat. The Hawks will be missing some veterans that provided experience for them a year ago.

“It’s a growing team. We’re still trying to build the program up to where it needs to be. We have a ways to go but we’re looking better,” said Potter. “We lost a couple of kids last year. They were seniors which is always good to have in the lineup.”

As with most of the sports in Gwinnett County, in-county wrestling opponents present strong challenges and one of the Hawks most well-known foes, Collins Hill High School, took the title last year. As a matter of fact, the Eagles have won the state championship five years consecutively; prior to 2008, Collins Hill won it all in 2002 and 2005.

If the Hawks can continue to build on the success they are having, they have the potential to knock off the Eagles in their run for another title.

“Collins Hill and Archer are the top two teams we compete with in the area. Within the region, North Gwinnett and Collins Hill are the top two,” Potter said.

“We already have more wins than we did last year which is a good sign,” Potter said.

Things are looking bright for the Hawks’ future with a strong youth wrestling program. Many of those youngsters will wear the cardinal and gold in the years to come. Last year, the Junior Hawks saw seven wrestlers qualify for state.

At the Longhorn Duals, the Hawks defeated Lanier High School 57-24 and Northview High school 54-30. At the Archer Duals, Mill Creek took three out of five with wins over Kell, Harris County and Johns Creek.

The Hawks struggled a bit in the Walton Duals but pulled out a win over Dunwoody High School. MCHS will return to the mat tomorrow at Archer High School at 5 p.m.