Contributed by: Michael Siegel
(Eldon, Missouri) In the heart of Missouri, there is an upcoming wrestling program who has been climbing the class 2 state rankings in the last few years. The town of Eldon welcomed the sport of wrestling in 2013 and hasn’t looked back since.
Bret Marshall started the Eldon Varsity program a year after he started the Eldon junior high program and the Eldon Takedown Team. “I wanted to help Missouri wrestling grow and give back to the sport that has given me so much.” Marshall quoted on his LinkedIn profile.
Marshall lead the Mustangs for three seasons before handing the program over to Oak Grove alum Ryan Bird. In only the third year as a program, Eldon qualified 3 to the state tournament and started a new tradition in a small lake area town.
In the 2016-2017 season, new head coach Ryan Bird lead the Mustangs back to the State Tournament with five State Qualifiers and Eldon’s first District Champion Trenton Dillon. When asked about the championship Dillon said “It was a good feeling. I just knew when I got there I was going to win the bracket.”
At the end of the 2017 State Championships Eldon not only had their first two all-state wrestlers but a finalist as well. Junior Trenton Dillon became the first finalist in Eldon wrestling history falling just short of the ultimate prize. “It’s pretty special. He did all the work. I just tried to sit in the corner and tried to not mess things up. He had a great season and he earned it.” Coach Bird said when asked about his own accomplishments. The Mustangs ended their fourth year as a program with five state qualifiers and 3 state medalists and 11th class 2.
This year Eldon added some more experience to the mat with additions to the coaching staff to continue their success. As result, the Mustangs are once again heading to Mizzou Area. This year with four state qualifiers, two of which are District Champions and returning medalist.
So, if you’re looking for a story in this year’s championships keep your eye out for the Mustangs as they look for some more hardware in only their fifth year as a program.
2018 Eldon Mustangs State Wrestling Roster
- 182 – Dawson Brandt
- 160 – Trenton Dillon
- 120 – Isaiah Simmons
- 195 – Kaden Dillon