On The Mat One Last Time

February 18, 2016

I know that I’m not the one who is out there on the mat, fighting to win, fighting to stay off of my back. But, after three months of traveling as a team, watching the boys give it their all, and creating friendships I never dreamed would happen, the loss hurt. Wrestling is a sport that takes pure dedication, and desire. You are the only one out on that mat for six minutes, fighting for a victory. You don’t take shifts. You don’t have teammates to help you out of sticky situations… it’s all you.

This season, being a manager for the wrestling team has taught me so much. Not only about the sport of wrestling, but also about determination to be the best that I can be as a person, and as an athlete. It has taught me about teamwork, grit, and never giving up if you don’t succeed the first time. I have to thank Mr. Anderson for that, he is truly an inspiration to not only the boys, not only to me, but to the whole school. His work ethic and his spirit really rub off on you, whether you are on the mat wrestling or you’re a student in his classroom.

I think everyone on the team can agree that it has been a rough year. The team faced many injuries and many upsets in the lineup, whether it be because are traveling or because of other sports. But this year has also been full of numerous memories that I don’t think anyone will forget about. Although we lost in a tough fight against Hudsonville for our team regional title, no one went out onto that mat and decided that this wasn’t our time. We gave up one pin, out of fourteen, and that’s astonishing.

I was sitting at the table, next to Maggie, and when I heard the cheers behind me from the student section before any of the action even started I knew that we were ready to take on this team. Although we lost and it hurt, we all thought that we, as a team, had the power to bring home the title for the first time in almost twenty years… It was a good night.

Looking back on all the memories from this year I can’t help but laugh. These guys are some of the funniest people you will ever meet. If you have been in a room with the whole varsity lineup you know what I’m talking about. There is never a dull moment. Sure, when the guys are losing weight you can tell that there is a different atmosphere in the room.. especially on Tuesdays and Fridays because those are weigh-in day. But all in all, these guys never disappoint.

I can’t wait to see what next season brings because we are losing a lot of senior talent, but the team is also gaining quite a few freshmen that have that sense of grit and determination that it takes to be amazing. I want to say thank you to all the guys for accepting me and all of the other managers onto the team, and making it a fantastic experience.

And also, congratulations on your fourth consecutive District Title, wrestlers… you all deserve it.

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