With all of the crazy rules during this time because of COVID-19, the wrestlers spoke of their season and how much they are being affected by the guidelines. A lot of the biggest changes this year are the masks, not being able to get your hand raised by the ref after defeating the opponent, no shaking hands, and a limit to 15 minute time frames. Some of these rules can be handled lightly, but the fact that so many things can possibly be changed can be hard on the athletes.
When interviewing Kael Brisker (‘21) and John Lilly (‘21). They were asked what their expectations were for the season. With doubt in the minds of many, Believing the season won’t even go on. Furthermore, these boys have goals. They have the mindset of winning states.
Cleary past seasons have gone much smoother than this season already, considering the circumstances. So when the two seniors were asked how they felt this year would be different from the past they both gave similar answers. Brisker said, “You have to wear a mask when you’re not on the mat, only two people can come per wrestler”. This will have a big effect on the crowd. Wrestling meets are loud and intense. Without the energy, it will be hard for the boys to keep themselves motivated and pumped. Lilly mentioned “You have to wear a singlet and mask during weigh-ins” Which is very stressful when it comes to cutting weight. The boys struggle with this already and to have to add the weight on by wearing those masks makes it worse for them.
They were asked what would affect them most during this specific season and they didn’t seem to be too bothered by the guidelines, they have started to learn to accept it. Brisker says “When I win my hand cannot be raised” which takes away from the excitement and feeling of victory. Lilly says “The singlets effect weighs-ins” because the cutting isn’t easy; this has been a big mental downfall for him, making him lose more weight than needed.
It has been made evident that many things change monthly, weekly, and even daily this year when it comes to lockdowns, guidelines, and new rules. Nothing is at all promised this year. In this case, the two boys were asked how far they believe they will get into the wrestling season this year from the looks of it. Brisker says “I think we will get it all” and Lilly agrees with him by saying “We will get the whole season because the governor won’t shut anything down”.
With all the ups and downs this pandemic will bring, many of the athletes are happy being able to even have a season. From the start, it has gone well so far. Good luck to the wrestling team as they move through the rest of their season!