Princeton wrestling on the rise

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PRINCETON, WV (WVNS) — At a Crossfit gym in Princeton, magic is happening on the mats. Wrestling is a sport that takes pure determination and heart and that’s exactly what Princeton wrestling is built on.

“It’s all about how hard you want to work at it this is not a sport for somebody who thinks they are going to walk in here and do it right off the bat, it’s not like any other sport, this is a lot of work a lot of repetition and a lot of heart,” Head Wrestling Coach Jeff Bowman said.

Even though this team is full of a lot of first year wrestlers, Coach Bowman says there is something very special about these kids and this team. “they just work really really hard and they learn, and they learn from their mistakes. They don’t complain they don’t whine about it and there are no excuses, we are big on no excuses.”

Senior captain Kyle Neal has put a lot of work into this sport the last four years. He is just a few wins away from his 100th win, something that has never been done in school history.

“It is going to mean a lot to me because I will be the first one to do it in Princeton,” Neal said.

Bowman currently has three ranked wrestlers in the state right now. That is something he’s never had before as a coach. These rankings build momentum for the program and show that dreams can be a reality.

“You get one rank and then another person is ranked and you can see that its possible, that it’s not just some far fetched dream that somebody can be top 5 in the states,” Senior wrestler Ali Abdelwahed said.

These dreams didn’t just happen over night for these wrestlers. It takes a lot more then just going to practice after school.

“It’s a hard sport too you can’t just come into it and expect to go ahead and beat every body because that’s not whats going to happen, you have to get better you have to work yourself on the mat everyday and push past that wall you always hit and make sure you push your hardest all the time,” Neal said.

Princeton wrestling is more than just a group of athletes that get on the mat and wrestle one another, they are a family.

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