“The SFL Championship is a league tournament for wrestling and the top five at each varsity weight class move onto the divisionals. The top eight there go to sections and the top six from sections go to state,” said Rocklin senior Will Gladden.
Every year, the Sierra Foothill League holds a league-wide tournament for all mens’ varsity teams. As Gladden said, this is a very important meet for all schools involved. The top five wrestlers for each weight class move onto the divisional round.
“My school puts a lot more work in practice leading up to one of these events because they matter a lot more. If I lose a match at a head to head meet, it’s not a big deal. If I lose here my season could be over,” said Folsom junior Charlie Milburn.
Losing multiple matches at a league event could be detrimental to a wrestler’s season. Del Oro freshman, Eli Honsa lost his first round match.
“Despite my loss, I’m going to keep the best mindset I can. In order to prepare for my next match, I’m going to stay hydrated and listen to music to hype me up,” said Honsa.
Schools prepare their entire season for this event. At Whitney, the team practices for two hours everyday leading up to the tournament.
“We start with a 20 minute warm up, run live drills during the practices, and then finish with 30 more minutes of conditioning,” said Whitney senior Jacob Barquette.
Barquette isn’t a stranger to this kind of preparation. He’s been on the varsity team since his freshman year.
“The past two years I was hurt for the league tournament so it definitely feels good to be back after competing my freshman year,” said Barquette.
While it may have been his first time in the past three years, Barquette was voted most outstanding wrestler of the tournament. Other Whitney wrestlers: Alan Boynton, Angel Chavez, Jake McKee, Logan Chapman, Matt Sherer, Jake Rubalcava, and Drew Moulton also participated in the tournament.