Wrestlers complete season at state

Concussions, broken fingers don't stop the team

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Hadley Rittgers, Writer

The Kennedy wrestlers completed their season at the state tournament. The hours of practice and the challenges they have faced have all paid off.

The team faced many injuries this season, Nolan Hromidko, jr., Shaun Beyer, jr., and John Nolan, jr., suffered from concussions, Logen Rodriguez, jr., broke two fingers and Logan Benion suffered from a hurt knee.

“I broke my pinky finger a week before districts; I did everything I could to rest it while still practicing and keeping my weight down, and it limited some parts of what I could and couldn’t do during my matches,”  Rodriguez said, “I ended up breaking my pointer finger during my third place wrestle back match. I ended up winning 12-8.”

The team had to overcome obstacles mentally and physically this season.

“Beginning of the year we were just more tentative and we wrestled more in the thought for just ourselves and towards the end of the year coach beat into our minds that we need to wrestle for the team and that even if it’s a loss, if it’s a difference between a major and minor decision that it’s worth everything,” Dalles Jacobus, jr., said.

Even though the team was full of a lot of new faces, they were able to pull through and they ended up placing 4th in the district tournament on Saturday, Feb. 14.

To wrestle in state, wrestlers must place first or second at districts. This year individuals, Jacobus, Hromidko, and Ben Sarasin, fr., qualified for state. The state tournament began on Thursday, Feb. 19 and ended Saturday, Feb. 21. Last season two Kennedy wrestlers, Rodriguez and Hromidko, continued on to the state tournament, but this year three wrestlers made it to the state tournament.

“On Thursday you wrestle one match and if you win that match you go onto the next day; but if you lose that day you have to wait and [you] have to wrestle again that day,” Hromidko said.

Along with the support of the coaches and teammates, motivation is key when it comes to wrestling. For Hromidko, family was a big motivator.

“At districts what motivated me was my grandma. She was in the hospital with breast cancer so, that definitely motivated me to try to do better,” Hromidko said.

At the state tournament Hromidko placed fourth in Class 3A at 120 lbs. Both Jacobus and Sarasin fell short in the consolation rounds.

“Challenges our team has faced is really just being young,” Mallicoat said, “Learning how to win; learning how to lose.”

Now that state is over the team will get back into preparation for next year. During the offseason the wrestlers weightlift and condition or stay in shape through other sports. This keeps them prepared for the challenges that come with the new season.