Wrestlers Grapple Through Grinding Season

By Clarion Staff

One of the most commonly used metaphors for a high school Wrestling season is referring to it as a “grind.” It’s a reference that goes way beyond the score.   It’s the grueling practices and hard fought matches.   It’s the inevitable injuries and heartbreaking losses.   Although those challenges occur in nearly every sport, few high school seasons deal with the mental and physical strain as much as wrestling. According to Wrestling Coach Brian Ewing, “not only do wrestling practices often push the grapplers to the point of pure exhaustion, but no other high school sport requires its participants to be in the best shape of their lives for five continuous months.” During practice, he continually repeats a quote from Coach Spatafore, “You are the offense. You are defense. You are the special teams…You are a Wrestler!”

JFK Men’s Wrestling Team (Clarion photo by Breanna Thomas)

This year’s team consists of both young and experienced talent. Lead by senior captains Gabe Lopez and Nick Nishikawa, JFK has made a mark in Metro League Wrestling. Young and talented wrestlers are the future of JFK wrestling. First year wrestlers Gerardoangelo Lopez (sophomore-113pds), Chris Carter (freshman-120pds), Michael Tracy (freshman-126pds), Colin Reynolds (freshman-132pds), and Jad Eid (sophomore-152pds) lead by example each day. When added to the returning wrestlers Genero Barretto (senior-182pds), and Sebastian Amador (junior-220pds), the JFK line-up is a force to be reckoned with.

JFK continues to produce talent with the girls wrestling team with returning sophomores Anna Fukuhara and Antonia Hart producing medals in weekly tournaments. Newcomer Jazmine Koehler (sophomore) also has earned herself a few medals in tournaments. Wrestling has become a prevalent sport and is only increasing in popularity. It is only a matter of time until JFK produces a Nor-Cal or State Champion.

JFK Women's Wrestlers (L to R) Jazmine Koehler, Anna Fukuhara, Antonia Hart
JFK Women’s Wrestlers (L to R) Jazmine Koehler, Anna Fukuhara, Antonia Hart

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