What a difference a year makes! I remember writing this post in tears last year and now I am here writing that Daniel not only qualified for state but is a state medalist!
Daniel did not like how he felt last year when he finished 7th at districts and barely missed out on advancing through the state series. He was determined to work hard and not only get to state but to be a state champion. He did some Greco/Freestyle but after Neil dislocated his elbow that kind of put the damper on that for the year. He went into this year's wrestling season determined to meet his goals. He started off the season by taking first at his first tournament.
He just kept going. He never placed below third and had more 1st place finishes then anything else. He went into districts this year as the #1 seed and walked out the champion!
He went into regionals confident and determined. He finished 2nd which was great! He was not very happy as he wanted first but his second place finish meant he qualified for state!
I think I have not given Daniel enough credit the past few years. I never dubbed him as a natural athlete. He has heart, lots of it but he has to work hard at being good at sports. He puts the work in to get the results he wants. This year he was determined. Mix that with the work and he ended the season with a 32-8 record, 25 of those being wins by pin. As you can imagine, each loss at state was heartbreaking and didn't meet his ultimate goal of being state champion but being the 6th best wrestler in the state of Missouri in his weight class is nothing to be ashamed of. He earned that spot on the podium!
Daniel had an awesome season. It was so fun to be at tournaments and hear people talking about him using terms like, "beast", "champ" and "fighter". I loved when people underestimated him when he walked out on the mat to wrestle their kid and be surprised when Daniel won the match.
I am proud of Daniel's humility and sportsmanship. Overall, I am just proud of our son and the work he put into achieving his goals. I can't wait for next season!