Flatwater Fracas is Approaching

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If it seems to you like the Flatwater Fracas keeps getting bigger, you're on to something. The state's largest duel meet will feature an all-time high.
"It's not just adding the number of teams, it's the quality of teams that we've added just the past few years," Grand Island Senior High Athletic Director Joe Kutlas said.

The guest list features nine of Nebraska's top ten teams from last season. Plus, a defending state champion from Kansas, and a runner-up from Wyoming.

"You know, everybody is looking at this as one of the great tournaments on their schedule," Grand Island Wrestling Coach Mike Schadwinkel said. "And it is a great event. It's a great time for different teams to get together and kind of gauge themselves against different kinds of competition."

The Islanders play host to the Fracas, having capped off a fourth straight state title last year.

"It's something we've worked hard to develop and grow with," Schadwinkel said. "And I think us being successful has helped bring good teams in. We're really excited about the opportunity to have as many other good teams come in, and the level at which they compete."

The Fracas started as a dream of coach Mike Schadwinkel, and with the help of Athletic Director Joe Kutlas, the Islanders are hosting their sixth annual Fracas.

"There's so many AD's that maybe might not have said, 'Yeah, let's take this monster on!'" Schadwinkel said. "He's gotta put a lot of work into making this thing happen. It's been cool watching this thing grow."

The guest list includes more than 500 wrestlers from 5 different states. With Grand Island being the host and having won the past four Fracases, they know everyone will be looking to upset them.

"We don't see an out of state tournament every day and they're going to push us just like they push their own kids," junior wrestler Dante Rodriguez said. "We just have to work harded in the practice room and go into Friday and Saturday with guns out."

Winning may not be a lock, but Kutlas is sure about one thing.

"Really, it's a marriage of great teams, great competition, a great facility," Kutlas said. "Anybody who's a wrestling fan at all, or you know, just curious about it. It'll be something you want to be at."