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Strength In Numbers: Wrestling Shores Up Its Ranks

On January 17th, the wrestling team participated in a tri-meet with Watterson and Whetstone. Academy managed to beat both teams, but in very different manners.

Whetstone was a nail-biter, coming down to the final match. Junior Jeremy Schroeder came through with a one-point victory to give Academy a hard-fought win.

The competition against Watterson was less dramatic, but perhaps just as noteworthy. Academy benefitted from a number of Watterson forfeits, which never left the outcome in question. Watterson simply lacked the manpower to field enough wrestlers for every match.

For the past few years, it was the Vikings who kept forfeiting matches.

Two years ago, there were three people on the wrestling team. “We never thought of placing as a team at tournaments or winning duel meets,” recalls, senior captain, Johnston Allinder. Last year saw a small uptick, but still not enough to have a complete team.

A team that small leads to more problems than just being unable to win matches, though.

Allinder notes, “We had such a small team, we would go to other schools to drill cause we were drilling with the same guys everyday.”

This year, a few gaps in weight classes remain, but now the Vikings have combined quality with depth, and made themselves a force to be reckoned with. The team wins have piled up, validating the individual performances of past years that weren’t enough to carry a team.

“Now we have a chance at winning and going far into the State Duels,” remarks Allinder, something that hasn’t happened in a while. A three-man squad wouldn’t even qualify for a postseason run, but this year’s edition of the wrestling team has the personnel to make a lot of noise at States.

Much of the team is underclassmen, with Allinder as the only senior, forming a strong core for the next few years. This group has grown quickly and will only continue to develop as they continue to work with each other. To all the other teams in central Ohio, you’ve been warned. The Vikings have shored up their ranks, they’re here to stay, and if you don’t watch out, you’ll be on your back before you know it.

Written by Andy Li’13


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