High School Wrestlers React To Olympics Snub

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ST. JOHNS (WILX)-- Local wrestlers aren't letting their dreams of making it be influenced by news the sport could be dropped from the Olympic Games.

In St. Johns High School there are several wrestling athletes that are getting ready for state competition, and they can't let something like this get to their heads. As for their futures, some of them still plan on trying out for the 2016 Olympics before it could be dropped from the 2020 games.

"It's hard working for something your whole life. You have a dream to be an Olympic champ and wrestle, and they take your dream away," said St. Johns Wrestler Zach Hall.

Right now as a team they're not worrying about getting into the Olympics, but just winning that next match and possibly their 4th straight team title.

"I wasn't focused on the Olympics yet, I'm taking one step at a time," said St. Johns Wrestler Joshua Pennell.

"I have an experienced bunch of guys, explained Coach Derek Phillips. You don't ever look past an match or past an opponent."

Some of these boys are trying to make wrestling into a career. From the team, five have been accepted into a Big Ten College to wrestle next year. But they don't want to stop there.

"They have dreams of being state champions but it goes past that, said Phillips. They have dreams of being NCAA champions, and dreams of becoming Olympic champions."

"I love wrestling and I love were I'm going and what it does, said St. Johns Wrestler Ben Whitford. If I get a chance I'll shoot at getting in the 2016 Olympics because that will be the only shot I have."

Wrestling is one of the original Olympic games. The whole St. Johns team along with wrestling fans across the globe are hoping that it will be brought back.

"As a community of wrestling we don't just go down without a fight," said St. Johns Wrestler Logan Massa.

No matter how far these boys get in their wrestling careers Coach Phillps will always be proud.

"I'm extremely proud of the way they have handled themselves this year. They've competed hard. Every tournament we've been at trying our best and we've had a pretty successful year, but it's not done yet," said Phillips.

Dropping wrestling from the 2020 Olympic Games is not a done deal, it's only a recommendation at this time. A final vote is set for September.

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