New goals motivate wrestlers this season
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The HHS wrestling team is ranked 19th in the state this season. This could be a direct result of their ranking of 15th at the end of last season. The wrestling team has never been ranked since Coach Michael Patrick has been coaching here at HHS.
“Last year our goal was top 20. I told [the team] I want to finish top 10 this year,” said Patrick. “We need two guys to be ranked in the state this year to do that.” Patrick also hopes to make top five in the county.
With Dimitrius Hill, now a senior, placing fifth at states last year and graduated Ben Richards placing second, the team came out with a state rank of 15th. This has to happen again for the team to meet their goal of ranking top 10.
Since Hill also is a football player, along with a couple other teammates, wrestling will be able to compete in all 14 weight classes, which helps cancel out overall loss of points for forfeits.
To get ready for the season, Coach Patrick is stressing strategy and technique. “Every coach has their own philosophy. We have to get the kids to buy into the system for them to improve,” said Patrick.
According to Patrick, there are eight kids who wrestle year round and that has helped to bring up the program. The competition over the summer has helped raise the team to a level that they hope to compete at this season.
A big motivator for the team is the prospect of getting a plaque. A wrestler has to place at states to make it on the wall of the wrestling room, with their face on the plaque. Patrick says that this is something that will help to get the team to states.