POCATELLO — There’s plenty to talk about when it comes to the Thunder Ridge wrestling team.
You just won’t hear it around the Webb dinner table.
“It’s a little weird,” said Thunder Ridge 160-pounder Tanner Webb. “It’s just like anything else; we go home, we don’t live and breathe wrestling by any means. But it’s different. Just because it’s your dad, you have a little more you have to do. But I love it. I wouldn’t be where I am without him.”
Jody Webb is head coach of Thunder Ridge. While he’s managed to guide the Titans to the state tournament in year one of the school’s existence, he’s also had to manage being father and coach to Tanner, a senior who’s reached the second day of the state tournament for the first time in his career.
After placing third at the 5A District 5-6 tournament, Thunder Ridge qualified 12 wrestlers for this weekend’s state championships at Holt Arena, with four potential placers advancing to compete in today’s consolation and championship rounds.
Overall, it’s been a pretty successful year for the Titans, but any discussions that involve takedowns or arm bars remains at practice or at meets.
“We don’t talk wrestling at home,” Jody said.
As for the team, Jody said initial indications were that the new program would get off to a good start.
“We had a ton of kids come out and buy into the system and the program,” he said. “We could watch them get better week to week.”
Tanner Webb, along with Gage Holt (132) and Tristan Stanton (152), will wrestle in the consolation rounds today while Kaden Ramos (98) advanced to the championship semifinals.
“Since it is a new program, it’s pretty important for us to set the tone,” Tanner said. “This has by far been the best team, chemistry-wise, that I’ve ever been on.”
“It’s going to get nothing but better,” Jody added. “They’re committed to doing summer wrestling and off season work and I think it’s going to pay huge dividends.”
But for this weekend’s state championships, the focus is on what’s happening now and the family connections that bind. Even if it’s unspoken.
“It feels like you’re held to a little higher standard just because your dad’s the coach,” Tanner said. “The team expects a little more from me. That drives me, because of what they expect, it elevates my level of wrestling.”