It was an historic weekend for College of the Redwoods athletics as the Corsairs competed in wrestling for the first time in more than four decades.
Head coach Brandon Benvenuti traveled with 12 wrestlers for the season-opening Sac City Invitational to begin the new era for the program.
And it was an impressive return to the mats for the Corsairs, who placed sixth out of 12 teams, including some state powerhouses.
“I was really impressed with the performances and the way the guys competed and the way they rose to the occasion,” Benvenuti said. “They all felt good about their performances, and they all had fun and competed hard.
“They won some matches, they lost some matches, and they got a taste of victory and experienced the sting of defeat, and they know what they need to do different.”
Four Corsairs placed at the tournament, led by Kymani Capri who finished fourth at 149 pounds.
McKinleyville’s William Baumgarten got his college career off to a flying start with a fifth-place finish at 141 pounds while wrestling up a weight class.
“Kymani probably had the best performance of the day, and Jeff and Will both wrestled really well,” the coach said.
Benn Rieder also had a good showing in his CR debut.
The Corsairs will have a couple of weeks of practice before their next tournament, at Modesto on Oct. 7
“We’re going to get back to the practice room and get back to training and try to get better before Modesto,” Benvenuti said.