The Roberto Clemente Wildcats advanced to the Sectional wrestling tournament in Wauconda where sadly this year’s journey ends. At the tournament, wrestlers Chris Wi llis and John Martinez both represented Clemente well. Warm up partner Donnell Howery also contributed by motivating his teammates and helping staff bring in supplies; he has much potential for next year.
Starting with Freshman John Martinez, this wrestler began his season with little experience on the mat, but as the year progressed he quickly developed into a skilled wrestler. By mid-season, he was so good that he pinned his opponent in the match that advanced him to the sectional tournament.
Christopher Willis ended his senior year with class as he became a captain, leader, and competitive wrestler. Although he did not make it to the state tournament, Chris has plans to come back after graduation to help train the future Wildcats so that they can see the kind of success he has seen. Head coach Matt Tolene says, “Chris has the fastest stand-up I have seen in years, he is too fast,” about Chris’s escape ability.
One wrestler who demonstrates leadership qualities, but did not see competition this year, is Larry Christopher. Larry always put forth his best efforts as he continued to show his commitment to the sport, team, and coaches by training and even demonstrating techniques to assist team members in learning. His passion for the sport and loyalty to the team have been unparalleled.
Other special mention wrestlers are: Alejandro Mendoza, who never missed a practice and was always ready to work and laugh; Donnell Howery, a novice wrestler with much future leadership potential; Antonio Nieves, who worked hard, improved, competed, and was great example of hustle; Carlos Vazquez, who in his first year adapted, improved, and became a trustworthy member of the team.
Although the 2017 Wrestling season has come to its conclusion, the journey has just started for the incoming sophomores. Coaches Nathan Gavzer and Matthew Tolene are looking forward to the next chapter this great sport has to offer. With the support from Principal Marcey Sorensen and Assistant Principal Jamie Crosen, the wrestling program was upgraded with new singlets, shoes, head-gear, and new wrestling mats. The team utilized this new gear to reach new levels of competition, and our up and coming wrestlers will be able to do the same. The Clemente Wrestling Team would like to thank Marcey Sorensen and Jamie Crosen for their continued support, Clemente staff for their support and well wishes, AllTown Bus company for always arriving early, and greatest of all, our parents and guardians; without you it’s not possible.
See you next year!