By Alex Carder and Abby Chong, Staff Reporters This season, the boys’ wrestling team has surged forward to a 19-2 record under new head coach Gary Baker. The group of senior captains and fresh additions made it to district duals for the first time in 13 years. “I knew we had the talent. It’s just...
By Alex Carder and Abby Chong, Staff Reporters
This season, the boys’ wrestling team has surged forward to a 19-2 record under new head coach Gary Baker. The group of senior captains and fresh additions made it to district duals for the first time in 13 years.
“I knew we had the talent. It’s just a matter of getting everyone aligned,” Baker said. “Things came together and we stayed healthy, and I knew we had to have a shot.”
The team’s new training schedule allowed the players to elevate their level of play, leading them to a successful season.
“We have practice six days a week, every week. And if not, one of those days is a competition,” senior and varsity captain Jake Allred said. “We’re working really hard. We really set ourselves up to succeed.”
Baker has added insightful skills that have allowed the seniors to better communicate with the upper and lower classmen on the team.
“(We’re) led by four really strong senior athletes that have been a part of the program all four years and have been wrestling for a long time,” Allred said. “He (Baker) gives us a lot of power to inspire the team and get down to that level of ‘we’re all one team’ so we can better communicate with (other) players.”
August Mullin, a sophomore wrestler, shared his experience as a first-time wrestler at Conestoga.
“My first win ever wrestling, I was just super, super happy. Everyone’s been along for the ride with me and helpful with everything,” Mullin said.
The major factors in the team’s success this year have been the constant support from students, parents and each other.
“Our community is really good this year. We’ve had more spectators and fans than I’ve ever seen and that not only makes it more fun for us to compete, but it just brings more attention (to the team) and people want to be more involved,” Allred said.
Their hard work has shown throughout the season as they were able to claim the Central League title for the first time in 17 years after their beating Ridley on Feb. 1.
“It was the first time in a while Conestoga has been in (the district duals), so we’re definitely proud,” Mullin said.
In the future, the players hope to become a force to be reckoned with alongside the best wrestling teams in their league.
“This is the first step to building a new expectation for our team,” Allred said. “If we continue doing what we’re doing, we’ll build a new legacy — something that’s going to be a threat so that we’re a team to be scared of in the future.”
Alex Carder can be reached at [email protected]
Abby Chong can be reached at [email protected]
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