By Mario Chagolla
CV Wrestling Coach
The Camp Verde New Breed Wrestling Team attended the Phoenix Megatron national tournament this past weekend and came through with flying colors.
With less than half the roster size of other teams, New Breed placed fifth in the tournament. These boys make a lot of sacrifices to achieve their goals, and I'm extremely proud of them all.
The relentless attacking, power, and top riding series of Ryan Allred carried him to the top of the podium. He pinned all his opponents regardless of which division or state they were from. He proves that even small town competitors can defeat Goliath type challengers. He was awarded not only the first place medal in his weight class, but was also given the prestigious Magatron's Blue Dominance Singlet Award.
Utilizing his new slick leg attacks and the infamous Spladle, Hayden Uhler proved to be too much for his challengers and easily won the championship title. He dedicated himself over the off-season to fulfill his passion of wrestling. Overcoming many obstacles, Hayden Uhler focused all his ability on achieving his dream of a winning a national tournament. His victories testify of his personal faith and to the Camp Verde spirit of endurance, resilience, and perseverance. The keys to wrestling are the same keys to everything in life. If you want success, you need commitment, discipline and loyalty. That best describes Hayden Uhler. He represented his town with dignity and honor.
If a great athlete is not having her or his best game, or even if they've been in a week-long slump, she or he will not let that discourage them from striving for greatness. A great athlete will stick with it because of the belief that all the hard work and time endured during those lonely times will eventually pay off. As a result of that type of determination, great athletes overcome obstacles and achieve the goals they have set for themselves. That best describes Michael Nelson who also took the championship in his age group.
As Coach Cael Sanderson says, "Wrestling guarantees opportunity for personal victory, physical exertion, extreme fatigue and humility, yet thousands of athletes stay with it through high school, college and beyond. Why? Because wrestlers find a deep significance in how the experience of wrestling defines them. When an athlete musters the self-control required to practice every day, the endurance to last the entire season, the strength of will to finish every practice and match, the integrity to engage in battle and the courage to put his win/loss record on the line every time he steps on the mat he discovers something very valuable about himself. He discovers that he is much more than the score of the match, the outcome of a call or the result of a battle." As Coach Kocher of University of Chicago points out, "wrestlers love wrestling because of what it reveals to them about themselves."
No other sport mirrors life like wrestling. No game is experienced as personally as a wrestling match. Few sports can reach so deep into the soul of its competitors and return personal worth. There is not much glory in wrestling but there is much gain. Wrestlers replace weak bodies with strength; trade insecurity with courage, and exchange anger for honor. Wrestlers have shown me courage, humility, tenacity and bravery.
Wrestling is a teacher and sometimes her lessons are harsh. When we step to the line for battle, knowing that we can be defeated, the message to self in victory is easily apparent and glorious to enjoy.
But when we seek victory and are handed defeat, we are privately taught that both extremes, the ecstasy and the agony, are contrasting mirrors of the same reflection.
For without risk we can never know glory. Without defeat we will never understand humility. Integrity requires that the lessons of manhood be seared on our souls by the furnace of consequence. Wrestling creates consequence every day.