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Carroll’s Duling gains valuable experience this summer

Sam Duling joined Team Kansas at the Junior National Duals June 15-18 in Tulsa. It was the kind of experience that Duling, who wrestles at 170 pounds at Bishop Carroll, hopes he can pull from during the wrestling postseason for his senior year in February.

“It’s not the same type of wrestling we do in high school,” said Duling, who qualified for Team Kansas after a qualifying tournament in May.. “It was Greco Roman and Freestyle … but it helps you improve folkstyle wrestling. It gives you more time on the mat, and it translates to improvements on the mat.”

Duling finished with a winning record, which he was especially pleased with because he won more matches than when he qualified for the Schoolboy National Duals in eighth grade. 

“Competing against the best in the country isn’t an easy thing to do,” Duling said.

Other area Kansans that competed included Newton’s Nick Treaster, who earned All-American honors at 120 pounds and was 10-0. Andover’s Gabe Maki and Kapaun’s Nick Fury also competed with Treaster and Duling.

“I compete against them during folkstyle, so being able to compete with them on the same team is really fun,” Duling said. “We had a training camp on Monday and Tuesday to prepare and get all the bad habits out of us. Then the tournament was Wednesday through Saturday.”

Duling has been a varsity wrestler all through high school and consistently has a winning record.

“But I struggle in the postseason,” he said. “I have a lot of fun and love my teammates. 

“I have my sights set on my senior year and hope this is the year. The goal is to be the state champion. It’s been my dream ever since I was younger. 

“There’s studs at every weight. Going into my senior year, I feel I could be one of those guys. I want more time on the mat to correct the little things you struggle with.”

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