Senior captains Wade Sullivan, Seth Anderson, and Daniel Fenske shaking hands at the Prior Lake Meet. Photo by Mark Dunnett.

Wrestling gains more popularity this year

Winter is here and along with below zero temps, wrestling also has made its way to lakeville North.  Head coach Dan Recchio and assistants Josh Hansen, Brandon LaRue and Matt Sullivan held the team’s first practice on November 21st, however the preparation started months in advance.

Senior captains Seth Anderson, Daniel Fenske and Wade Sullivan have been long awaiting their senior seasons. With a great deal of matches under their belt, the team wasn’t hesitant to get to work.

Sullivan has been recognized for his wrestling abilities in the past. His freshman year he ended his season as a state champ. Last year along with graduate Jackson Dunell he made an appearance at state but unfortunately came up short.

“This year has been going pretty well I can only hope it continues to,” Sullivan said.

Although Sullivan has already suffered from a broken nose during a match in Woodbury, he is determined to take on the rest of the year.

The team is full of young talent and potential. North’s line up only consists of four seniors and 22 total wrestlers, but don’t let the numbers fool you. Sophomore Bryce Benhart, the team’s only varsity heavyweight, is making a statement so far this year. During the Panther Invite held at home, one of the biggest meets of the year, he placed second.

“Wrestling is fun I enjoy the sport and hanging around my team,” Benhart said.

With the season underway he has a great deal of experience and learning to do that will make him an even better wrestler for his upcoming years.

Another contributor is freshman Ryan Mudgett who has been on the varsity team since 7th grade. Starting young he has had the drive and motivation to take him this far. Given the circumstances of Sullivan being a senior he feels comfortable leaving the program to these kids.

“The program is in great hands for upcoming years. They are all leaders in their own way,” Sullivan said.

North’s athletics have been a hot topic in the district. Although wrestling hasn’t been the center of attention in the upcoming years the program is looking to attract more attention, supporters and even wrestlers. With tournaments almost every weekend, along with matches during the week, the team resonates with the quote “No days off!” With the season underway and only a few home matches left there are just a few things to look out for in the upcoming months when it comes to Lakeville North’s wrestling team. Passion, determination, and possibly making the trek to state.

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