Since 2008, the Tri-County RVTHS wrestling team, The Cougars, have had a good grip on the competition, going undefeated this year with an overall record of 24-0. Coaches Steve LaPlante, Drew Stowik, Harry Takesian, and Matt Hogan, along with Senior Captains Teddy Connors, Aidan Weeman, and Marco Pantazopoulos, have led a team of male and female student wrestlers to victory time and time again.
This season alone, The Cougars have been titled Mayflower League Champions, Division 3 Central sectional Champions, State Vocational Champions, and more. How has this team managed to maintain their position on the mat for so long? What is the secret to their success, and can we use it to be successful ourselves?
|Tri-County RVTHS Wrestling in action|
However, Coach LaPlante credits the wrestlers themselves, and feels lucky to “. . . have athletes who buy in.” To have students who strive for achievement and really focus; “. . . focus is huge.” Yet focus is just one piece of the puzzle, according to LaPlante, who believes in “F.A.T.E.” Not an uncontrollable destiny, but focus, attitude, toughness, and effort. LaPlante is also a believer in the Tri-County RVTHS motto, “Work hard, today counts,” stating “Hard work every day, what we do every day has an impact.”
This hard work is highlighted by standout individual achievements including, but not limited to, Brandon Allen, Sectional Champion with 41 wins this season, Madi Dowd, 4th at Girls All States, Cole King, 3rd in the Section, and Aidan Weeman, who was 3rd at D3 States with 46 wins this season and over 100 career wins. It must be the wrestlers’ effort and dedication to the sport that brings such overwhelming victory.
In truth, it is neither one of these things individually. The coaches teach the techniques and advise the best they can, but the wrestlers’ drive and determination is what pushes the team over the edge. How can we use this knowledge to find our own success? Coach Steve LaPlante put it best: “Only you can control your fate.”