by Dylan Sondike
As winter sports roll into another year of competing, the varsity wrestling team is looking to have a strong and competitive season. With an impressive 42-32 win against Einstein in the first meet of the season, the team appears to be starting on the right foot to attain lofty goals.
“We have a wall of champions in the wrestling room and my goal is to get as many names on the wall as possible,” said Coach Pete Siarkas. “That means they need to win county, regional, and state championships. Also, seniors have the opportunity to get their name on the 100 wins category.”
A large number of new wrestlers have joined the team, including seven that made their varsity debut against Einstein. Siarkas added that he and Coach Juan Rivera have had tremendous success recruiting kids for the team. These new wrestlers will look to contribute to the team, but seniors Sam Dickey and Jace Munoz, as well as junior Vasili Siarkas, will be key on the road to state this year, explained Siarkas.
Dickey is ranked in the state in his current weight class, but he said he is hoping to cut down in weight to be in a more competitive weight class. Additionally, he is wrestling through a torn patellar ligament from football. With the team going 8-1 at the Armed Duals Tournament over the weekend of December 10-11 and finishing second out of some of the strongest teams in the state, Dickey has high expectations for this year. “My hopes for this year is to at least win regionals and hopefully come home with a state title,” he said.
In addition to the strong performances in meets so far this season, Siarkas said intense practices will improve skill levels and be very beneficial in future tournaments and meets. He noted how, due to a large number of kids on the team this year, it is much more difficult to run practices. He explained that there are so many kids that two different practices are needed and that the variety of different skill levels presents challenges. Some kids have a decade of experience under their belts, whereas others are just getting their feet wet in wrestling.
The team’s early accomplishments, both against Einstein and in their showing in the Armed Duals Tournament, are impressive feats that the team’s approach is working. As the schedule becomes more intense, the Warriors will look to keep their momentum going against new opponents.