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The varsity wrestling team faced off against Benjamin N. Cardozo High School in the last home match of the season. Despite the team’s best efforts, they were outmatched by Cardozo 70-6.
Many of the wrestlers did not have a favorable outcome. Of 15 weight classes, the Hawks only won one match. Senior Dylan Biscardi won his weight class on a fall, pinning his opponent in the 182 lb weight class and winning his team’s only 6 points. Reflecting on his match Dylan said, “I just went out there and did what I had to do, which was win my match. The kid I wrestled wasn’t as experienced as me, but he has wrestled me before. Although he tried, I just beat him like last time”
Although Dylan had won, his teammates had a difficult time, losing seven weight classes based on fall decisions, with their opponents pinning them.
According to sophomore Alexis Sarabia, the youth of the team is the reason for their season struggles. Under new Coach David Rojas, Alexis has noticed that the atmosphere is much different as it was under former coach Raymond Adamkiewicz.
“He’s new so he’s still learning how to climb the ropes with our team,” Alexis said of Rojas.
In addition to the new coach, the rookies of the team have been another obstacle the Hawks had to overcome this season. Alexis said “We had a lot of graduating seniors and this took a huge toll on the team because they really are the leaders of the team too. This is a rebuilding year for the wrestling team so we’re taking it one step at a time.”
One of these new wrestlers, junior Ivanka Juran, was pinned by her opponent in one minute and 20 seconds. Believing to have tried her, Ivanka was still not satisfied with her loss, viewing this as “more motivation to work harder so that next time I can do better.”
In regards to the new wrestlers, Ivanka agreed that since the team is small with mostly rookies, they have faced a lot of barriers to team success. However, she is optimistic that they have learned much and will take “everything in stride for next year” or work harder to improve for the next season. “We’re definitely going to take everything that we learned this season and come back next year, even stronger. I look forward to seeing the team grow, and I hope that we got a bunch of more eager additions to our wrestling family,” she said.
Another rookie was sophomore Daniell Morales, one of the two Hawk wrestlers to not lose on a pin but on a decision. Daniell’s match was very close, having lost after three rounds with an individual score of three to seven.
Reflecting, Daniell said, “My performance was okay but not exceptional. There were moments in which I could’ve received the upper hand and possibly even pinned my competitor.”
Throughout the season, multiple former wrestlers came back to watch their old team. According to Daniell, they (the alumni) were on the sideline during this whole match and gave tips for improvement.
One alumnus who came back was Chris Chan from the Class of 2014. He gave the advice that “the first round is all about power. The second round is where practice shows. The third round is all heart.” He also added that in wrestling you always have to walk in with the mindset that you can do it.
Another alumna who came back was Amanda Ramsaroop. Like Alexis, Amanda noticed that team was very inexperienced. Comparing this year to her high school years, Amanda noticed that there was a lack of technique and no vibrant team to cheer on teammates.
Alvin Lacchman, another alumnus spectator, agreed with Amanda.
“The team also lacks a lot of heart and motivation,” he commented. He also noticed that the lack of wrestlers caused the Hawks to forfeit five of their matches.
“I wanted the team to just put some heart into wrestling and have a reason to be wrestling. It’s not a sport that you can play without some type of motivation.” Furthermore, Lacchman said that he hopes that the team will reflect and learn from their mistakes.
Although this match was disappointing, the Hawks look to use it as a building block for the future.