Wrestlers advance to regional competition today


Katlynn Fox

The referee blows the whistle as Senior Cameron Botting begins his match at the regional qualifying round. “My favorite part of coaching is just watching the improvement and development of wrestlers,” Rozanski said.

The wrestling team members who advanced will wrestle in the regional tournament at Haltom City on Feb. 14-15. 

Seniors Ramiro Gamboa, Jared Defreece and Aniyah Nelson, sophomore Hadarrah Hamilton and freshmen William Dittman and Kainen Green will compete. 

“The experience [qualifying for regionals] was very exciting and nerve-racking,” senior Aniyah Nelson said. “There were girls that I was competing against that I’ve never wrestled before.”

There are hundreds of moves and techniques in wrestling, and every move can have five or six variations. Wrestling coach David Rozanski said the many positions make wrestling difficult to instruct. 

“The team can improve by training more, weightlifting more and learning techniques and moves,” Rozanski said. “They’ve been working hard, but it’s going to be a tough tournament to move to state.”

Wrestlers have to make healthy choices about what they eat in order to maintain their weight class, which is an issue unique to wrestling. Junior Jeremiah Joseph said that aspect is hard to maintain, especially after a hard workout.

“You just want to pig out and eat all of the food,” Joseph said. “But then you have to think, ‘No, I have to make weight on Tuesday.’ I have to make sure to watch what I eat. That kind of grinds on you, but it definitely is still rewarding.”

Rozanski said strength, good conditioning and having strong technique is what makes a good wrestler.

“Wrestling is a sport that doesn’t only focus on one specific workout,” Nelson said. “It requires you to be mentally and physically conditioned in every way. It’s very intense most times; you definitely have to give it your all.”

Rozanski said the team needs to continue to improve and try their best because it is short on numbers and high-level wrestlers. 

“It’s tough, but pretty rewarding,” Joseph said. “You see that what you put in is what you get out. You can see how much you’ve improved watching your old matches then seeing your new ones and also being able to beat guys you weren’t able to before.”