Wrestling is in their blood: Keskes loom large in Storm's success

Wrestling is in their blood: Keskes loom large in Storm's success

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Wrestling is in their blood: Keskes loom large in Storm's success

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SAUK RAPIDS

Just to make it more fair, Chris and Korey Keske go against their bigger brother Blake Keske in home wrestling matches.

“Sometimes, me and Korey gang up on Blake,” Chris Keske said with a grin.

“We tag-team him,” Korey Keske said with a smile.

“He’s so big, we need both of us to go up against him,” Chris Keske said.

The three Keskes are a big part of the Sauk Rapids wrestling program. As the Storm prepare for Friday’s Spectrum Invitational in Elk River, Chris and Korey should be big scorers in the individual tournament.

Chris Keske, a senior 152-pounder, is a defending champion at the Spectrum Invitational.

Korey Keske, a freshman 120-pounder, has become one of the Storm’s most consistent scorers.

Blake Keske, a junior 220-pounder, is sidelined with torn ankle ligaments.

“It’s kind of important to my mom for all three of us boys to be wrestling together,” Chris Keske said.

It may not happen again this year, but two Keskes remain key contributors.

Chris Keske, who is 18-8 this season, is closing in on 100 career wins. He believes he is 11 away from the career milestone. His goal is to get back to state after making it as a sophomore.

Korey Keske 14-6 and very much a factor in his weight class in Section 8-3A. He’s also a looking for a state title in the ninth-grader state tournament in Champlin Park. There’s a ninth-grader section meet Saturday in Milaca that Korey Keske will compete in.

Blake Keske hopes to be healthy for football season. All three Keskes play football, too. Chris was Sauk Rapids’ leading rusher. Korey also plays running back. Blake is a fullback and defensive end.

Look alikes

Chris and Korey Keske admit they look like brothers compared to Blake, who looks like a distant cousin.

Chris and Korey have similar builds and blond hair. Blake has dark hair and is a solid 205 pounds.

“He eats so much,” Chris Keske kidded. “He was always the big one.”

“He’s the odd-ball of the bunch,” Korey Keske teased.

All three are admired by the coaching staff, especially Chris Keske.

Leader

Sauk Rapids head wrestling coach Ken Bemboom said that Chris Keske is a natural vocal leader.

“Chris is a senior and one of our captains,” Bemboom said. “He’s our most vocal leader. The other captains are more quiet.

“When I need somebody to talk to the group, he does that because he’s more vocal. On the mats, they are two or my quickest, flashiest kids. It’s fun to watch them because they are always going.”

The Keskes say they grew up in a sports-minded family. While their dad David grew up on a farm near Foley, their mom Michelle was a volleyball and softball player for the Falcons.

They have numerous relatives who wrestled for Foley. It was a natural for them to continue in the sport.

And they definitely love it, trying to return Sauk Rapids to an upper-echelon team in the Central Lakes Conference under Bemboom, in his first year back in the program after being the Storm’s head coach from 1994-2000.

“It’s my first year wrestling for him,” Chris Keske said. “He’s a good coach, keeps everyone in line.”

Chris Keske said he is in the process of finding a college for next year. He’s interested in continuing his football and wrestling careers, or at least one or the other. He’s unsure of a major.

“I’ve applied to a few places,” he said.

In the meantime, the Keskes, or at least two of them, are hoping to help Sauk Rapids improve on its 2-4 conference and 3-9 overall record and get to the state tournament in St. Paul.

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