Kenyon’s balance of analysis, aggression working well
New Trier's Colin Kenyon (top) wrestles Maine South's Jon Nieder at 113 pounds on Jan. 10 in Park Ridge. | Michelle LaVigne~Sun-Times Media
Updated: February 19, 2013 1:46PM
PARK RIDGE — Colin Kenyon circled Jon Nieder for nearly one minute when the two met last week in a CSL South dual meet at 113 pounds.
Kenyon, a junior at New Trier, looked like a jungle cat about to tackle his prey.
Once he struck, it was all but over for Maine South’s Nieder. Kenyon scored eight unanswered points before pinning Nieder in the second period for the victory.
“I like to feel out the guy to see his strengths and weaknesses,” Kenyon said. “He was taller than me, and those guys usually are a little harder for me to get a shot on. But his legs were open, and I hit my shot to take him down.”
Kenyon, who wrestled at 106 pounds as a sophomore, is trying to be a more cerebral wrestler this season. He wants to use his brains as much as his brawn.
“I am thinking about everything I do out there,” Kenyon said. “I want to be more logical about how I approach each match.”
Upon stepping onto the mat, Kenyon said he first looks at his opponent’s feet and takes notice of his arm positions. Once the match starts, Kenyon figures out his opponent’s style, such as Greco-Roman or freestyle.
Every bit of information helps Kenyon chart out a game plan, even if it’s done on the go.
“It’s not something you can really practice,” he said. “You have to be out there, in the match. But I enjoy the thinking part of it.”
Kenyon’s latest approach is paying off. He came into this week with more than 20 wins and looks to capture a second straight conference championship this weekend at Niles West. Kenyon went undefeated in all five of his CSL South matches this season.
New Trier coach Marc Tadelman appreciates Kenyon’s thoughtfulness and thoroughness, but he cautions Kenyon not to overthink anything.
“We still want him to be aggressive,” said Tadelman, who credited Kenyon’s title at the Mid-States tournament in late December to his ability to seemingly always to be in attack mode. “Maybe he was too aggressive last year, and he got caught a few times. But we don’t want him waiting around or laying back too long.”
But Tadelman has been more than pleased with Kenyon’s performance this season.
“He’s a tough wrestler and has been consistent for us all of this year,” the coach said. “He always wrestles hard, and we are looking for him to get that medal this year at the state meet.”