WRESTLING- For the boys and girls of the wrestling team, winter means discarding warm layers, whipping out singlets, and taking the world on one match at a time. But following the loss of thirteen ‘016 wrestlers this season, the team needed fresh talent.
According to junior captain Rogan Zangari, the search for young wrestlers has been successful: “We recruited around thirty freshmen this year, so we have a super young team,” said Zangari.
Among these freshmen are Lief Griem and Rinn Schepman, both pictured. Both new to the wrestling world and initially hesitant to joining the team.
When Schepman’s mom told her she had to participate in a winter sport, Schepman didn’t know which program to sign up for.
This changed when the girl’s wrestling captain approached the young freshman in the fall: “She told me to join wrestling, so I decided to do it.”
She doesn’t regret this decision in the least. “Everyone is a family and is very supportive,” said Schepman.
Griem, like Schepman, also sees the team as especially nice community to have as a freshman.
“It’s a good way to get introduced to the school. I would recommend it to everyone,” he said.
The freshmen have a lot to live up to; last winter, the girls team took home their second Metro championship in a row, and the boys ranked high in their league. But they’ve began the 2016 season with a good start, winning both of their first two matches against Franklin and Eastside Catholic, the latter a challenging opponent that sends many wrestlers to State.
“I think we’re going to be very good team this year,” said Zangari.
BOYS BASKETBALL- The boys basketball team has big shoes to fill. Lucky for them, this season they’ve picked up freshman Tari Eason, pictured, who just moved to Seattle from Los Angeles.
]“He’s the only freshman on varsity and I think he’s going to be a great player for us” said team captain, junior J’Raan Brooks. “He’s a hard nosed player. He’s still learning the ropes of varsity but skill wise he’s going to be very good.”
Eason is aware of the team’s past success and is ready to be a part of it. “I searched up good high school basketball [when I moved here] and this place showed up” he said. “It’s an honor.”
Both Brooks and Eason have high hopes for the season. When asked how he thinks the team is going to do this year, Eason replied confidently. “State for sure” he said. With three wins under their belt already, the team is off to a good start.
To get to state, the team will need to work as hard as ever to prepare to face off against tough competition, including Nathan Hale and Rainier Beach.
The boys are working hard and keeping their end goal in mind in anticipation of tough competition. “Training is rigorous. I’ve never done anything like this,” said Eason. “But it definitely pays off.”
SWIMMING- The annual strip tease isn’t the only thing to look forward from the boys swim team this year; last season, they ended with a record of 6-1, sent four athletes to State, and are only getting better.
“We didn’t lose a bunch of seniors, and there are a lot of new kids with potential that are super fast,” said senior captain Alek Reid.
Remy Freeman, pictured, a freshman new to the team, is one of the promising underclassmen who train with a club team year-round.
“I have been swimming for awhile, like four years…I swim for Excel [club swimming team] in Sandpoint,” said Freeman, a short distance swimmer that prefers freestyle and breaststroke.
The addition of freshmen is one of several new aspects of the team. Last season’s assistant coach, David Johnson, has become the head coach. This change in staff has pushed the swimmers harder than in previous years.
“It’s pretty intense,” said Reid. “You come in at 6:45 in the morning and get into the pool at 7.” Reid added that in all four years he’s participated in swimming, this season’s workouts have challenged him like never before.
To see if these hard workouts are paying off, come to the swimmer’s home meets at Medgar Evers.