WATERLOO — Warriors believe they can win every contest they enter.
Beginning Friday, 32 teams will have that mindset when the eighth Battle of Waterloo two-day dual team tournament takes place at Young Arena.
While each of those 32 teams wants to hoist the championship trophy Saturday, there is a bigger picture.
With 102 ranked wrestlers and 12 ranked teams, including the top three in Class 1A, this weekend’s tournament is a true measuring stick. Each wrestler and each team will find out where they need to improve before February and the state tournament series.
“We talk a lot about the team aspect with our guys,” said New Hampton head coach Nick Hemann. “This is going to be a test for us. We will know who we are at the end of it and what changes we need to make, what we need to work and improve on to be ready in February.”
The Chickasaws (2A), Denver (1A), Lisbon (1A) and Clarion-Goldfield (2A) enter the tournament as the four top seeds, the first time in tournament history that a 3A school has not earned a No. 1 seed. Last year’s championship bracket was made up of three 3A schools — West Des Moines Valley, Waverly-Shell Rock and Western Dubuque, along with New Hampton.
West Des Moines Valley is the two-time defending champion and is one of the 2-seeds along with Waverly-Shell Rock, West Delaware and North Scott.
“It’s crazy,” added Hemann. “We as coaches were talking about that the other day that no 3A teams got a top seed. North Scott, Waverly-Shell Rock, Western Dubuque, West Des Moines Valley all have good teams and could feel they got slighted.
“They are going to come in here and try to knock one of us down. We have never beaten Valley in this tournament, yet, so we give them a lot of respect.”
Several of the favorites have already met on the mat either in duals or tournaments.
On Dec. 3, New Hampton, Lisbon and Clarion-Goldfield finished 4-5-6 at the Cliff Keen Independence Invitational, getting beat by only one Iowa school, champion Fort Dodge. At South Winneshiek last week, New Hampton edged Denver by 16 points with both teams crowning four champs.
Denver won the Keith Young Invitational on Dec. 3 over Valley, North Scott, Waverly-Shell Rock and Don Bosco, while West Delaware edged Davenport Assumption in its own tournament. Also last weekend, Clarion-Goldfield was 8.5 points better than Crestwood and 21 better than Don Bosco in Parkersburg.
“A lot of teams have already been tested, and we all are going to get tested again this weekend,” said Hemann.
HALL OF FAME SOCIAL: A social and presentation will be held at the Cedar Valley SportsPlex tonight to honor the 2017 Battle of Waterloo Hall of Fame Class — Bill Andrew, Kyven Gadson, Virgil Carr, Tony Cordes and Mike Chapman.
The social begins at 5 p.m. with the reception at 6 p.m.
Virgil Carr Bracket
9 a.m. — No. 1 New Hampton vs. No. 8 Columbus Catholic, Mat 3
9 a.m. — No. 5 Charles City vs. No. 4 Cedar Rapids Prairie, Mat 4
9 a.m. — No. 3 Don Bosco Catholic vs. No. 6 Independence, Mat 1
9 a.m. — No. 7 Union vs. No. 2 Waverly-Shell Rock, Mat 2
Tony Cordes Bracket
9 a.m. — No. 1 Lisbon vs. Waterloo West, Mat 6
9 a.m. — No. 5 Cedar Falls vs. No. 4 Iowa City West, Mat 5
9 a.m. — No. 3 Crestwood vs. No. 6 Nashua-Plainfield, Mat 8
9 a.m. — No. 7 Mason City vs. No. 2 West Delaware, Mat 7
Semifinals and consolation semifinals at 11 a.m.
Bill Andrew Bracket
4 p.m. — No. 1 Denver vs. No. 8 Alburnett, Mat 6
4 p.m. — No. 5 Clear Lake vs. No. 4 Western Dubuque, Mat 5
4 p.m. — No. 3 Iowa City High vs. No. 6 Osage, Mat 8
4 p.m. — No. 2 West Des Moines Valley vs. No. 7 Pleasant Valley, Mat 7
Kyven Gadson Bracket
4 p.m. — No. 1 Clarion-Goldfield vs. No. 8 ADM, Mat 3
4 p.m. — No. 5 Linn-Mar vs. No. 4 Davenport Assumption, Mat 4
4 p.m. — No. 3 Lake Mills vs. No. 6 Indianola, Mat 1
4 p.m. — No. 7 Waterloo East vs. No. 2 North Scott, Mat 2
Semifinals and consolation semifinals at 6 p.m.