After a strong five-week regular season, Princeton took its wrestling team into the postseason, competing in the district meet at Carrollton Creekview April 7-8.
With his team facing a lot of challenges this season, coach Ryan DeLavergne said he was proud with how his team competed at the district meet.
“I thought the boys team wrestled great,” DeLavergne said. “Every weight class had some tough kids in it, and we went toe to toe with them. For a comparatively young program, with this only being our fourth year overall, I thought we did a great job.”
With the top-three wrestlers in each weight class earning a spot in the regional competition, the Princeton boys wrestling team were able to advance nine wrestlers, finishing second overall as a unit with 219.5 total points. Lovejoy took first place in the boys meet with 249.5 total points, while Highland Park took third place with 186 team points.
While the team wasn’t able to fulfill its goal of a district title, coach DeLaVergne was still proud of the strides they took in their fourth year as a program.
“Going into this season, we had a goal of winning a district title, and I still think that time will come, but we are back-to-back runners up,” DeLavergne said. “That means for half of the time the program has existed, we’ve been in the mix for a district championship. That speaks volumes to the work ethic and commitment of these kids. The road only gets tougher from here. Many of our kids have a goal to end the season on the state podium, and I think it’s a realistic one. We are working hard to come out of regionals as state qualifiers so we can bring some more state medals back to Princeton.”
Leading the way for the Panthers on the podium is senior Andres Ugalde, who took home first place in the 145-pound weight class. Ugalde, who went 25-0 in the five-week regular season, was a founding member of Princeton wrestling, and now holds the honor of the first male district champion in program history.
By Jackson King • [email protected]