Alexander's wrestlers went to the state meet this weekend, came home today with two state titles and a fifth-place finish and got a hero's welcome. Friends, fans, and family turned out at the school following a siren-blasting escort through the village from the Alexander Fire Department and Sheriff's patrols.
Pictured are Dane Heberlein, Nick Young and Matt Gaiser
Gaiser collected his first state title; Young came in fifth; and for Heberlein, a senior, it was his third consecutive state title.
"It means a lot for the coaches, for the parents, even for the school," Heberlein said of the three-peat.
Asked what it means for him more personally and what he will reflect on in the future about it, Heberlein said, 'It's not so much the state titles, but what it took to win those state titles. I think that’s what is going to remembered the most. I mean all the hard work, practices, drill partners, and coaches, grinding through and in the end, a state championship is what we got."
Alexander has a long history of success in wrestling, and Heberlein said that's because a culture of dedication is built into the program.
"We set a good standard and I think that’s something to stand by," Heberlein said. "Every time you go in for a practice, you go in that room you know what you’ve got to bring. There are no easy days or days you slack. You’re going into work and that’s something we take pride in, working every day."
There are always young wrestlers coming up behind Alexander's current crop of champions and Heberlein has advice for them.
"Stay strong mentally," he said. "It easy to be mentally weakened and that’s when bad things will happen, so stay strong mentally and keep it together and things are fine."