As many fall sports come to a close, the wrestling team prepares to kickoff the winter season with passion, intent and victory. Along with a new season comes a new list of achievable goals and a set of guidelines to help the team perform to the best of their ability.
Head wrestling coach and Bible teacher Brian St. James said, “We have had a massive amount of success over the past two seasons under coach Stromie. We are a much younger team this season after graduating 10 state placers in the last two years. My goal for our team this season is to win the area dual tournament and have 4 individual state placers. We have a great group of underclassmen who I hope can gain invaluable experience this season by filling in some key varsity positions.”
Looking at the upcoming season, the majority of the players and coaches agreed that their toughest opponent would be Mount Pisgah.
Sophomore Braden Debow said, “The hardest opponent we will have in our region is probably Mount Pisgah. There are a couple of other good teams, but we will rarely wrestle them (if at all).”
Also, St. James said, “Throughout the year we wrestle an extraordinarily tough competition schedule. Most weekends we are competing against 6 and 7A programs in the north metro area. The top dates I have circled on our schedule are Jan. 12th (the area duals) and Jan. 23rd (senior night).”
The difficult schedule will help the player individually especially when the compete in their separate weight classes.
Sophomore Sam Schmitt said, “My goal for this year is for our team to make it to win the area dual tournament.”
When asked who the key leaders for the team this season would be St. James said, “Our team is led by our three returning state qualifiers Donald Conley (3rd in state), Harrison Dearth (3rd in state), and Sam Schmitt. I look to those three to set the tempo of our team this season and be leaders both on and off the mat.”
One of the most important concepts when forming is a team is team bonding. The wrestling team bonds over a game called handball. They have different teams that compete against each other and it is a good way to connect through something everybody enjoys playing. Senior Harrison Dearth said, “We have some pretty intense handball competitions. The losing team is forced to sacrifice one of their players to Shiva the Goddess of death.”
Wrestling is a fast pace sport that requires concentration dedication and an attack to defeat the opponent. The Wesleyan Wolves are new, and this is known as their rebuilding year, just like many teams after they lose many seniors. They are preparing daily in practice to perform to their max potential and they work hard in order to attack the day. St. James said, “I’m most proud of the attitude of the guys on our team. They don’t take themselves too seriously and I think that is important. I see Jesus reflected in each of them.”