Thomas finds early success

Thomas Bean, Sports Writer

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One young wrestler is drawing comparisons to some of Xavier’s best wrestlers. In his first season as a Saint, freshman Ivan Thomas (106) is quickly being compared to recent graduates Clint Lembeck (X16) and Josh Gerke (X17). Thomas boasts a superb varsity record of 29-3 in his first high school season.

Thomas began wrestling at the age of six for the Saints Wrestling Club. As he grew and evolved as a wrestler, he moved on from the Saints Wrestling Club and joined other, more competitive wrestling clubs. He began to travel to other states in order to compete in higher level tournaments.

Making the jump to the high school level has been one of the biggest adjustments Thomas has had to make in his career.

“The biggest adjustment I have made is getting used to wrestling older kids,” Thomas said. “At first, I felt a little bit nervous at the new feeling. I am used to the feeling now, and I’m ready for the rest of the season.”

His teammates have nothing but praise for the young wrestler.

“He handles himself very well for being so young,” senior Ambrose Poduska said. “He wrestles with a level of confidence that allows him to succeed at the varsity level.”

Oftentimes high school sports are dominated by the stronger and more mature upperclassmen. Weight class separation allows wrestlers to succeed due to skill rather than sheer size. Even though Thomas has been wrestling for years, he was surprised by the success he has had so early in his career.

“My level of success as a freshman has come as a surprise. I am excited for the rest of the year, and I want to improve in the practice room every day,” Thomas said.

Thomas will have another chance to improve on his record when the Xavier wrestling team competes at home tonight at 6 p.m. against Cedar Rapids Prairie.

Thomas Bean

Sports Writer

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Thomas finds early success