A Look Inside the Wrestling Room

A Look Inside the Wrestling Room

Jason Brancato, Staff Writer

The wrestling room sits just outside the main gym, opposite the Tiger Study Den, and closed out from the rest of the school. Students may know this room as the ping pong room but little do they know, it is used for much more than that. After the bell rings, all wrestlers gather to this room and begin their arduous journey through practice.

Wrestling is one of the sports that flies under the radar of most high school students. It takes a certain type of dedication to be committed to a sport so physically and mentally grueling. The first thoughts that pop into people’s heads when thinking of wrestling are having to lose and maintain their weight, which immediately repulse most people from the sport. Many students aren’t big fans of touching and grappling with an opponent in front of everyone. Some of these reasons are why the team is one of the smallest in the school, with only 15 members. But the sport is ancient, and those who participate in it appreciate its subtleties and the dedication required to master it.

The school’s team consists of many new wrestlers and some returning veterans. There are many freshmen who are going straight from rec wrestling to starting on high school varsity. They have fought valiantly against their more experienced opponents this season. Also, there are only two seniors, who help teach and lead the rest of the team.

Despite the low turnout, the practices are nothing short of strenuous. The warm-up consists of at least ten minutes of running. Whether it’s in the room, in the gym, or up and down the stairs, the wrestling team starts the grind by getting a sweat going. The temperature in the wrestling room is always warmer than in any other part of the school because Mr. Sutera, the team’s assistant coach, believes that if the wrestlers can go hard in practice while they are hot, tired, and sweating, then they’ll have no problem wrestling on game day.

Warm-ups are followed up by army crawls across the floor, sprints, and carries, where the wrestlers carry each other across the room in different positions. A reader might be exhausted just from reading this, but that is only just the beginning. Every day the wrestlers practice their takedowns and their escapes with their partners. The rest of wrestling practice is broken down between running, live wrestling with a teammate, and more running. Wrestling practice is a tough grind, one that doesn’t last too long but drains every ounce of energy from the players’ bodies. It is a combination of learning different wrestling techniques and constant cardio. But the strenuousness of practice is showing through in the results of the season.

The wrestling team this year has a record of 3-5 so far in the season. The team has fewer matches this year than previous years but is doing well with its difficult schedule. The team doesn’t have all the weight categories covered, but they do have wrestlers who work hard and are dedicated to showing up every day. Despite only having two seniors, and five freshmen starters, the young team is excelling. “It takes a special type of person to participate in this sport, where it’s only you on the mat against your opponent,” said Coach Sutera.

Come support the wrestling team against Elmwood Park on Friday, February 9th. It’s senior night and it’s the last match of the season. If you’ve never been to a wrestling match and you’re curious about the sport, this is your chance to see first-hand how hard the wrestlers have worked this season.