Wrestlers ready to grapple with 2017-2018 season

Wrestling Practice

Jillian Baker

Wrestling Practice

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As November hits and fall sports are slowly coming to an end, winter sports are on the rise and one in particular, Canfield wrestling. With the past few years ending with great success, and having many state qualifiers, Canfield is preparing for another stellar season.

When talking to newly announced head coach, Stephen Pitts who took over for Dean Conley, about how he feels about the upcoming season, he said, “I’m not nervous. I’m more excited because of the great kids and the great Canfield community.”

With experienced leaders such as David Crawford and Eric El-Hayek leading the team, Pitts expects practices to run smoothly.

When talking to Coach Pitts about the changes in the way he runs his practices and the wrestling program he said, “Very minor changes, but no need to reinvent the wheel since we have been successful.”

When talking to the players they shared a similar excitement as Coach Pitts. Sophomore Anthony D’alesio said “I am very excited and hoping to win state and hoping to place at ironman.”

D’alesio currently holds a school wrestling record of being the youngest state placer, receiving fourth place, has high hopes for his current season along with his team season. However, D’alesio does not get as much off season preparation because he is a dual athlete.

Many top wrestlers are also football players which limits their off season preparation, but one wrestler in particular has been prepping for this current season months in advance. When talking to Eric El-Hayek  about when he started preparing himself, he said, “I started (training) basically when the season ended with lifting before or after school to try to get stronger for the season.”

He continued, “With not playing football it has opened up a lot of time to focus on my wrestling season, and accomplish my goal of qualifying for the state tournament this year.”

This year’s incoming freshman class has great talent with many wrestlers such as one in particular, Ethan Fletcher.

When asking Fletcher about how he feels for his first high school season, he said, “Yes, I am a little nervous because I will be wrestling guys much older than me, but I am still really excited to see what I can do.”

Fletcher also has high hopes just like the rest, wanting to place in the top 8 at state.

With plenty of talent and excitement about this upcoming wrestling season, the wrestlers and coaches are all ready to begin. Many have high hopes for themselves along with the team as a whole, and are all willing to put in the practice to make sure that happens.