Wrestlers Own the Mat


Contributed by Cody Comer

Cody Comer setting up for a shot.

Ireri Mares, Reporter/Photo Editor

Unable to wrestle amidst the pandemic due to it being an all contact sport, Selma High boys’ wrestling has finally gotten back out on the mat after two years. 

The boys season started off with The Chukchansi Invite at Madera South. The team placed sixth overall, with seniors Nate Gonzalez and Kimo Leia placing first.

The team’s most recent competition was the CSL duals, which is a tournament against all schools in their league. This dual was on January 26th and hosted by Dinuba. Here, the boys wrestling team placed third and beat Hanford West. 

Their upcoming dual meet is in Sanger on February 4th where the boys, as well as the girls, will compete for dominance over their opponent. 

The boys team practices after school until around 6. Their practices are roughly two and a half hours long, but that’s not all the work they put in.

Sophomore Zach Lugo wakes up at 4:30 every morning to go to the gym before school. 

 “It helps with my cardio and strength,” Lugo exclaimed. 

He’s not the only one. Senior Nate Gonzalez also works out before school.

“It’s the only way to get better,” Gonzalez claims. “Those extra hours really make the difference.”

Senior Kimo Leia trains at 6:30pm to 7:00pm and 8:00pm to 8:30pm in Fresno.

The extra work and runs after practice are the only way to set these wrestlers apart from other competitors. This is because wrestling doesn’t only test your physical strength. The sport demands mental strength as well as pushing boundaries at practice to meet the weight requirements. 

Even with all the hard work put into the sport, the boys see this year as a blessing.

This is because wrestling is the most contact sport there is, so the boys didn’t have a season the previous year.

“The team, just like many other places in the world, has been thrown upside down by Covid,” expressed Leia.

Many trips and tournaments have been canceled, and the boys have to test every week they have a tournament/dual despite vaccination status. These are the Covid-19 precautions required to participate in this full-contact sport. 

“The team is doing the best with what [they] got,” Leia exclaims. 

“[Covid] has affected my season.…[I]t’s affected all our seasons,” expresses Lugo.  

Despite the struggle, everyone of them is out there doing what they can to have the best season they can.