Someone walking through a qualifying wrestling tournament the weekend before State, might assume the heartbreak happens in the finals, with kids battling for first and third place wins. I would argue they’re wrong.
On this week, heartbreak hour actually happens the round before. This is when you have kids who were almost there, almost safe, battling against kids who relentlessly fought their way through wrestle-backs to get a last shot, toeing the lines for a face off.
These kids, in this semi-final rounds, have the most on the line that day. One of them will win and move on to fight next weekend. One of them will not, and will go home until next season.
Today, we learned all about that heartbreak. Our oldest, who lost in overtime in the second round, fought his way all the way through wrestle-backs to get one more shot.
One more shot.
He stepped on the mat knowing a loss here meant the end of his season. And a win meant he was going to State.
He didn’t give it up easy. He fought on into five overtime periods, to come up just a little short with only seconds left on the clock.
The boy who won fought too. And he deserves his trip to State as much as anyone. But his win was our son’s loss.
And dang it - it sucks. We can’t fix it for him. We can’t take his hurt for him.
We can only walk with him, cry with him, and tell him how most people will never work hard enough to experience hard loss like this.
(He did go on to win his next match for a 5th place finish. Only the top four move on.)
A huge thanks to all of the amazing BPWC coaches, parents and wrestlers for another great season. We can’t wait to cheer on our club’s EIGHTEEN state qualifiers next weekend!
Kate Lambert grew up in northern Illinois, not on a farm but active in FFA and showing livestock.
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