Coral Shores High School’s wrestling team came out aggressive and inspired in its second outing of the season, in a tri-meet against Westminster Christian School and Riviera Prep, and walked away with a victory.
Against Riviera Prep, the team managed to win all but two individual matchups. Against Westminster, the team won all but one. The team had previously faced Westminster Christian School, along with all other district rivals, in a meet on Dec. 17 in Key West.
This year, the team is hoping to have all its wrestlers reach Regional competition. That will be a challenge, with the majority of the team’s members wrestling in their first year, and only three wrestlers from last year’s squad returning.
The new guys have made ground in the sport, said Coach Chris Ramos.
“For being their first, they are making great improvements,” he said. “They’re not scared to tie up, take shots, or hit their escapes. It’s very good to see these kids progress, especially when you think about how far we’ve come since November. We should expect a lot more from them next year as well.”
The team’s training is not for the faint of heart. Ramos starts the team on a brisk 2-mile jog to warm up before hitting the weights for strength building. The lifting program is meant to develop core, hip flexors, and strengthen legs. After practicing technical moves for an hour and a half or so, teammates then face each other in matches against, with minimal rest, before they finish off with a few more drills.
Brute force isn’t the key to sound wrestling, said Ramos; controlling a match is based on technical ability and a little bit of instinct.
Junior Zach Rodriguez prepared for this year’s wrestling season by running on the cross country team. Rodriguez says his conditioning has improved since the beginning of the year but that one of the most challenging aspects of the sport is making weight to compete in specific weight classes.
“After cross country I weighed 119; I’m at 121 now. I weigh myself weekly at lunch, but cutting weight can be hard because my family always cooks a really good meal the night before,” said Rodriguez. “We have a lot of new guys this year, and they’ve gotten a lot better since the beginning of the year.”
The team’s next meet will pit the squad against nine other schools in one of the largest meets of the season. The wrestling team’s season runs through the end of February, leading up to Regionals, and State competition in March.
“It’s very good to see these kids progress, especially when you think about how far we’ve come since November. We should expect a lot more from them next year as well.” Coach Chris Ramos