Competition at Francis Howell North will lead Bruins to post-season


Daphne Yu

Nearly two months after the wrestling team competed for the first time this season, the Bruins are gearing up for their last tournament before the district tournament on Feb. 10.

The Francis Howell North Tournament in St. Charles, Saturday, Jan. 28 is the last chance the boys will have to practice in a tournament-like setting before postseason.
FHN “is our last tournament, last opportunity we really have for a lot of matches before the district competition,” head coach Travis Craig said. “It’s really important that we do well and the guys have confidence.”
Though Craig emphasizes its importance, the team does not see the tournament as anything out of the ordinary. The boys plan to treat it like any other competition.
“It’s really not that much different. You just prepare to wrestle every single match that you can wrestle the best that you can wrestle it,” said senior Harry Schauwecker, who wrestles at the 170 pound weight class. At “tournaments you can watch the guy you’re going to wrestle and you kind of see what he does, but at the same time you go out and wrestle your own match. You’re not going to change what you do.”
Also participating in the tournament are Whitfield and Troy High Schools, which Schauwecker said boast some of the toughest competition for the Bruin team, including one participant who is ranked sixth in the state. Still the Bruins believe their success this season will give them an advantage going into the meet.
“We’re doing really well,” sophomore Sam Crane, in the weight class 140, said. “It’s the best year we’ve had; we’re ranked seventh in the state. It’ll definitely be a good year by the time February rolls around.”
February marks the start of postseason for the wrestling team, with the district tournament starting Feb. 10. The team has trained specifically for districts and state in order to peak at the right time, putting the wrestlers in heavy training the week of the Francis Howell Tournament.
“A lot of times we’ll condition very hard the few weeks leading up to districts and drop right off near districts so they peak at the right time,” Craig said. “They might not feel their best at the Francis Howell tournament, but we want them to feel their best at the district competition.”
Overall, Craig says the tournament is just another piece of training for his team. They will approach it with a long-term mind set, using it to prepare them for the future.
“Everything we do is trying to progress towards the district and state competitions,” Craig said. “We don’t really look too much at our duel or even tournament results to see whether we’re winning as a team necessarily, or losing.  We want to progress and keep getting better and better, each individual wrestler improving throughout the year so when we get to district time, they’re competing at their highest level. Everything we do is trying to try to get wrestlers through districts and to state. That is our ultimate goal, to do well at state.”
By Daphne Yu