Wrestling wrap-up

At the end of the last season, the Stevenson wrestlers had one goal   in mind: beat Libertyville High School. They have trained hard for the past year, both on and off season. They circled the date that they would see Libertyville again, and on Jan. 16, after a 50-year losing streak, the Patriots met their goal. They defeated Libertyville.

In a dual match with Libertyville, the Patriots left the mat with a final score of 31-16. Following the win over Libertyville, the wrestling team advanced with a 5-0 streak to the North Suburban Conference.

“[Being the first team in 50 years to beat Libertyville] was a special moment in our program,” Shane Cook, head wrestling coach, said. “I knew that when they won it, they didn’t just win it for themselves, but for every Stevenson wrestler that had gone before them.”

For Juwon Anderson ’15, he recalls the alumni smiling at the meet when the final score was revealed. Despite facing a shoulder injury in the past, Anderson was mentally prepared for the match.

“Last year when we lost [to Libertyville], we made it our number one goal to beat them,” Anderson said, “I feel like [this win] signals a shift in power. Now [Stevenson] is in charge.”

Having wrestled for the past 14 years, Tyler Harrington ’15 is used to the grueling physical and mental demands of the sport. He credits the team’s success this year to the wrestlers’ collaboration.

“This year, the team grew so close, that there was this feeling of  brotherhood,” Harrington said. “As a team, we are making history.”

While the Patriots claimed the title as conference champs as a team at the North Suburban Conference, they did not qualify for Sectionals as a team. Instead, seven sectional qualifiers went on to compete at the Barrington Individual Sectionals.

From Sectionals, two state qualifiers—Harrington and Eric Carter ’17—went on to compete at the Illinois High School Association Class 3A Wrestling Tournament. Harrington placed fourth at State in the 182 lb. bracket, ending his Stevenson wrestling career with a victory.