David City wrestling ended the 2018-19 season on a high note. At the 2019 State Championships, two wrestlers, Justin White and Noah Styskal, joined 34 former scouts as state champions.
The first David City state champion was Jerry Proskovec, in 1969.
White and Styskal scored 25 points each for the Scouts. Combine that with the help of seven teammates, six of which one at least once in Omaha, helped the Scouts place third as a team.
On top of last year's success, it doesn't appear then David City will be going anywhere anytime soon as everyone besides White and Styskal will be coming back next year.
"I really think that last year when I walked out of the state tournament, I realistically thought that we'd be a fourth or fifth-place team this year. But I'll tell you what, what put us up to third and being as successful as we were this year, was the time and effort that our guys put in and how hard they worked," coach Tahner Thiem said after the state tournament. "The biggest thing that is going to stick out to me about this group of guys is their work ethic and coachability. This is probably the best behaved and most coachable team I've ever had."
The other medal winners for David City were Dylan Vodicka, Jacson Valentine, Jake Ingwersen and Wayne Moore. Zackary Barlean and James Excamilla also competed in the state tournament.
"There was no distractions throughout the year. They came down to work every single day. They never once complained about anything I made them do, never complained about being overworked," Thiem said. "Without a doubt, that's what's going to stick out to me about this team. It was a very enjoyable year. I really enjoyed coaching these guys."
The state tournament wasn't the only area of success for David City.
The Scouts opened the season with great successes on Nov. 30 in the Lakeview Invitational, finishing second as a team, placing a wrestler on the medal stand in all 14 weight classes and bringing home four gold medals.
White, Styskal, Vodicka and Moore were the gold medalists.
The success continued into the Nebraska Duals, where David City went 7-3 defeating O'Neil, High Plains, Norfolk, Cozad, Malcolm, Tekamah-Herman and Twin River. The only losses came against Columbus High, Columbus Lakeview and Bishop Heelan (Iowa).
On Dec. 13, in the Schuyler Dual Quad, Justin White broke the all-time David City pin record.
At the Valentine Invite on Dec. 14, The Scouts placed fourth as a team and Styskal and White added more gold medals.
The momentum continued into a Dec. 20 triangular against Syracuse and Wilber-Clatonia as David City swept again.
Justin White broke the DCHS career pin when he pinned Miguel Carrasco of Schuyler in the first period for his 104th career pin.
"I didn't think I was going to do it my freshman year," White said during an interview about the accomplishment. "I've always looked at the records and thought that I could maybe break some, but it wasn't until after my sophomore year where I thought I might be able to do it. Now I already did it and am trying to expand."
After the Christmas break, David City wrestling returned to the mat and earned a fourth-place team finish and collected two individual championships on Jan. 4-5 at the 50th annual High Plains Invite, held at Central Community College-Columbus.
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White and Styskal were the wrestlers who won championships, yet again.
David City then faced off against rival Aquinas Catholic on Jan. 10 in one of the biggest duals of the season and won 33-31.
David City and Aquinas wrestling split 14 matches evenly down the middle, 7-7, in what was a triangular, but it was the Scouts earning bragging rights over with pins in four of those victories to go with three other decisions and a 33-31 dual victory.
David City also handled East Butler 63-17 and improved to 12-4 in dual matches on the season.
Just two days later, David City won the Cross County Invite bringing home seven gold medals.
Clayton Harris, White, Styskal, Vodicka, Allen, Mooore and Ingwersen all finished atop the podium.
David City wrestling closed the home schedule of the 2018-19 campaign on Jan. 24 in a triangular sweep of Class C No. 8 Malcolm and North Bend Central.
DC beat Malcolm 57-22 and NBC 77-6.
Carlos Chavez, White and Styskal were all honored before the triangular as the three seniors on the team.
Roderick Boss' single-season record for takedowns at David City stood for 22 years before Noah Styskal broke it with his 196th 2-point move against Cooper White of Malcolm in a dual on Jan. 24.
David City wrestling came into the Southern Nebraska Conference tournament on Jan. 26 as seven-time reigning champions. The Scouts made it eight is great and continued their decade of dominance.
White, Styskal, Vodicka and Escamilla all brought home gold medals.
The Scouts then competed at the state dual tournament on Feb. 2 where hopes for a team dual championship were spoiled when Aquinas earned payback from just a few weeks earlier and sent DC to the loser's bracket. The Scouts then defeated Bridgeport before losing to Valentine.
With the state dual tournament behind them, the Scouts got ready for the district tournament where David City won seven championships with a perfect 7-0 unbeaten performance in title matches.
The 2019 season may have fallen short of a team dual and team state championship like recent years, but with two individual titles at state, another haul of medals and loads of experience, Scout wrestling remains a force for the future.
Peter Huguenin is a sports reporter for The Banner-Press. Reach him via email at DVDsports@lee.net