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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

My Nephew, the Wrestler.

My oldest nephew Charlie began wrestling in the seventh grade. As a freshman he made the varsity wrestling squad at his school, and this year he is once again wrestling varsity. While Charlie has done exceptionally well from the very beginning, anyone who knows him also knows there hardly seems to be a time when he is not sustaining or recovering from one injury or another. This past Saturday at Regionals was no different.

Regionals is do or die time for wrestlers. A wrestler has to place fourth or better at Regionals to advance to Semi-State, not to mention the first match is a must win in order to not be eliminated. On the other hand, once a wrestler has won his first match the pressure is off, because even if he loses all of his remaining matches, the worst he will place is fourth.

Charlie started out the day having his head taped to prevent the huge scab on his forehead from bleeding, and having his left elbow wrapped because he hyperextended it during practice earlier in the week. Least to say, it was already looking like it was going to be a tough day. In the first round, Charlie faced off against Elwood, and after being up 6-0, pinned his opponent. The second round was a rematch three times over for Charlie, pitting him against Cathedral. Each time Charlie had faced the Cathedral wrestler previously in the season, he lost by a small margin. We were hoping this would be Charlie's opportunity to get the proverbial monkey off his back, but alas, it was not to be. In the third and final round, Charlie found himself up against Hamilton Heights. All seemed to be going fairly well even though Charlie was down by two points at the end of the first period. The second period was about to begin when suddenly the coaches for both teams were on the mat checking out Charlie, and before I realized what was going on, Charlie's coaches called for a
forfeit and that was the end of the match.

It turned out that in an attempt to escape from the hold of the Hamilton Heights wrestler at the end of the first period, Charlie got his bell rung pretty badly when the back right side of his head slammed into the mat. Charlie was dazed for quite a while afterwards, but it appeared he was going to be okay. *cue foreboding music* At practice on Monday, the team trainer was not comfortable clearing Charlie to wrestle at Semi-State this coming Saturday, so she made an appointment for him to be evaluated at Methodist Sports Medicine on Tuesday. To cut to the chase, the results of Tuesday's evaluation were not good. Charlie was diagnosed with a major concussion, ending his wrestling season effective immediately. It goes without saying that Charlie is extremely upset, especially since his season ended prematurely last year after he injured his ankle at the MIC Championship.

Hopefully next season will go better.

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