Bubba Rewolinski (right) battles against Elkhorn last season. (Rick Benavides/SLN)


By Tim Wester

Sports Correspondent

Union Grove senior Alex “Bubba” Rewolinski experienced the agony of finishing just one place short of achieving his dream of qualifying for the state championship meet in Madison last season.

After dedicating the offseason to training and club wrestling, Rewolinski is determined to achieve his dream in his final high school wrestling season.

“It helped that Bubba wrestled a lot over the summer and has come into practice in good shape,” Union Grove wrestling coach Andy Weis said. “He knows how close he was and knows what he needs to do and is working hard and keeps making his teammates better because they will make him better.”

Rewolinski leads a young Broncos team that consists primarily of freshmen and sophomores.

“We are a young team once again this year with just one senior, but we also have kids coming back that have some experience,” Union Grove coach Andy Weis said. “Of our 25 wrestlers, eight are sophomores and seven are freshman.”

The Broncos also return three other sectional qualifiers, including junior Keith Storm-Voltz (195), and sophomores Dylan Scacco (152) and Baron Masi (220).

“Baron also worked hard in the offseason and did club wrestling for Mukwonago as part of the Ringers,” Weis said. Dylan surprised us with his run to sectionals last year, so we are excited to see how he can build off of last year. And Keith looks strong as well and may move up to 195 class.”

Other returning letter-winners include sophomore John Sackman (126/132) and juniors Zach Myers (120) and Jake Anderson (152/160).

“Our varsity spots aren’t quite set yet,” Weis said. “But all of our guys, experience and inexperienced, are working hard, which makes it easy to coach.”

Joining the returning letter-winners is a talented group of freshmen and sophomores. Freshman Cade Willis (106/113), who has already gained experience in club wrestling, figures to be one of the Broncos’ bright young performers. Other freshmen include Jay DeWees (285) and Reid Frederickson (145).

“Cade is a freshman that we expect to earn the varsity nod at 106,” Weis sasid. “He has already picked up some valuable experience wrestling for Higher Level in Burlington so he doesn’t come in as raw as other freshmen.”

The Bronco sophomores include Luke Peterson (106), Thomas Cook (113), Connor Esch (285), and Dillon Pagels (138/145).

“As a young team, we are going to take some lumps even though some of our younger kids have varsity experience,” Weis said. “Maturity-wise the difference between a freshman and a junior is significant as the upperclassman just have different strength.”

“We’ve got to learn positioning and technique and continue to build on muscle.”

The Broncos’ progress may be accelerated by the end of the regular season thanks to the deep and talented Southern Lakes Conference. Burlington, Waterford, and Lake Geneva Badger figure to challenge for the conference title and make deep playoff runs, with Elkhorn also in the mix.

“Hopefully we can keep the same optimism that we have now through the whole season,” Weis said. “With holiday breaks and vacation coming followed by a grueling January schedule, it can be tough to keep focus and stay positive. Hopefully toward the end of the season we can hang with some of those schools in the conference.”

The Broncos’ first test will be at Wilmot Thursday, Nov. 30. Then a grueling tournament season in December commences before more tough Southern Lakes Conference dual meets.