Wrestling team is smaller yet stronger


Credit: Chris Taggart

Junior Gio Crispi has won all his matches since returning from a devastating leg injury.

By Pat Walker, Sports Editor

Over the last two years, the Hackley Wrestling team has dwindled in size from 24 to currently seven members. Despite having a pool of young and talented wrestlers remaining, the success on the mat of each individual player cannot translate to wins given the low numbers. Lacking eight out of the 15 weight classes, the team is oftentimes forced to give the other team a victory before the match even begins.

In previous years where every weight class was filled with two people, the team now has to refocus its dependence on each member’s own ability to win. With simply no alternative motive to cope with the lack of weight classes than to do their job as a wrestler, members of the team have motivated each other throughout the season to create this success. “The low numbers have provided us with a lot of competition with each other to be the best that we can be. This can be directly seen in the fact that almost everyone on the team has a winning record at the moment, and we are performing pretty well. We have made a lot of progress in both wrestling and the relationship that we as a team share,” said junior Gio Crispi.

An upperclassmen captain for the team, Gio has witnessed the team at its best and worst in size. Specifically, during the team’s 2014-2015 season, three Hackley wrestlers advanced to National Preps, placing two thirds and one fourth. Coming off a leg injury from football, his return to the team has been vital to their success and growth as a unit. “This year’s experience has been very unique for us. Unlike previous years where there was a lot of hierarchy and competition between teammates for spots, this year has made the Hackley wrestling team like a family, and while I definitely have great memories from the past two years, they are much different than they are this year. I would say it’s a brotherhood, but we have a girl on the team so it is more than that,” Gio commented.

With just seven members on the roster, Hackley Wrestling is still able to maintain a winning record for almost everyone on the team. The team’s size has motivated the wrestlers to be the best they can be and has successfully established an unbreakable bond among members of the group.