Thank you to all those involved in our program's fundraising efforts for a full year of hard work! Walleye Weekend Kiwanis Set Up. Judo Tournament Set Up. Snap Raise. A Home Move. Five Packer Games. These events definitely made a big impact this season!
It was certainly a learning and rebuilding year with new coaches, parents, wrestlers, and club members trying to get to know each other and the new direction of the program.
About 15 Fond du Lac wrestlers enjoyed traveling out of state to Ohio last June for the "Jordan Trained" Team Camp. They were also able to learn from both Nazar Kulchytskyy and Larry Marchionda for two weeks at our own Fond du Lac hosted clinic.
We began the season with a new Fond du Lac Wrestling Logo and new uniforms for the high school, purchased by both the club and school.
Along with the help of the Fond du Lac School District, we were able to finance a new practice room mat (at a cost of $17,500), which was dearly needed. The district also helped out by putting up new window wraps on the practice room windows, making the room more inviting both inside and out of the building. These upgrades allowed us to keep the room cleaner and safer for the kids as a result, along with creating a new, more exciting look and feel.
We added a Teacher Appreciation Night to our dual meet schedule- an exciting opportunity for our wrestlers to be appreciated at a home dual event and be introduced to the sport of wrestling. Youth nights at the high school duals were also added to allow our young wrestlers the chance to make use of our high school wrestling room, enjoy a pizza dinner, and watch our high schoolers compete in the field house!
We changed up our Cardinal Kids program by placing it before the Junior Cardinal program on Tuesdays at Riverside. This allowed our high school wrestlers to help out and for a number of coaches to jump in to help facilitate.
Three middle school programs were reintroduced and completed their first seasons back in the program. Rueben Munoz, Jake Eigenbrodt, and Tim Evers served as the coaches for these programs and enjoyed an exciting first season.
We also financed a new competition mat as a direct result of the team effort put in by everyone! In fact, our new FOND DU LAC CARDINALS competition mat (purchased at a cost of $7800) was displayed on the floor of the WIAA Individual State Tournament in all five rounds for the entire state to see! This mat will serve as our new high school competition mat for years to come. Thank you to all who put in the work to make this possible!
Two high school wrestlers, Issac Ortegon 138 and Braelon Allen 182, qualified for the WIAA Individual Tournament at the Kohl Center, while three youth wrestlers, Antonio Flores, Quinton Ortegon, and Saisar Castro, qualified for the WWF Youth State Tournament at the Alliant Energy Center. We have a number of other wrestlers right on the brink who should be joining that group down in Madison in the coming years.
To conclude the year, we held a K-12 Bowling Night for program awards and good family fun. We had approximately 150 wrestlers and families join us at Ledgeview Lanes to enjoy pizza, soda, bowling, and take part in the program award ceremonies. Thank you to all who attended and made this night so successful!
Our high school season quote that made it onto the back of our team shirt was one by Dan Gable: "It takes more than one individual to make a winner." This is something that we learned and continue to learn about wrestling. It is a team sport that requires every one of us to look out for each other. When we work together toward common goals, the sky is the limit!
We certainly have a lot to be excited about now and with the future of Fond du Lac Wrestling. Let's keep building! Go Cardinals!