Franich family fights for victory

Wrestlers throughout the state of Washington gather in the Tacoma Dome each February to compete in the Washington State Wrestling Tournament.
Having competed in the Washington State Wrestling Tournament three times prior to this year, senior Haley Franich is aiming to close out her high school wrestling career with a win in this years’ State competition.
Haley Franich has become familiar with victory, having won the USA Wrestling Women’s Cadet National Folkstyle Championship in 2013, being named the Tacoma Athlete of the Year in 2014-2015 and placing in the top seven of her weight class each year that she has competed in the state tournament.
Brian Franich, father and coach of Haley, reflected on Haley’s development as a wrestler.
“Haley has grown up in a wrestling family but [had] never really competed until she got to junior high. Her older and younger brothers, Brandon and Joshua, always wrestled from a young age but she preferred baseball and other team sports. I never would of thought she would turn out to love the sport the most out of all my kids,” Brian Franich said. “I have a front row seat to all the action and have always enjoyed coaching all my kids over the years. Sometimes we have our moments like any coach and athlete but with her current record at 123-18 (currently undefeated this year 21-0) I feel like she has a grasp on what it takes to win.”
With her father assisting her in conditioning, Haley Franich has been training diligently to achieve victory.
“I have been working a lot on my conditioning—a very important aspect of wrestling. My coach, who is also my dad, has taken me far and wide to seek out the toughest competition in the state, sometimes bumping me up to weights like 115 pounds, 120 pounds and 125 pounds to
wrestle girls who will give me a challenge,” Haley Franich said. “Wrestling these heavier and stronger girls challenges me to rely not [only] on my strength but [also on] my technique in order to be victorious, which will help me when I get to the tough competition at the state level where my technique will be the key to my success.”
Recalling her previous experience in the state competition, Haley Franich noted what it will take to triumph over her competitors.
“The competition at State is always tough—everyone wants a chance at the title and no one is going to lay down and give it to you. You really have to work for it and want it even more [than your competitors],” Haley Franich said. “In my past years I have not had success. Last year, I lost in the finals 5-4 to the state champ from the previous year. However, I have a feeling this year is going to be different.”
Haley Franich’s primary goal is to secure the State title, finishing her high school career with a State win under her belt.
“My goal for this season is nothing short of the state title. It is my senior year and my last chance at the championship and nothing is going to stop me from reaching my goal. Nothing else matters,” Haley Franich said.
Despite her passion for the sport, Haley Franich currently does not have plans to continue wrestling at the collegiate level. Having earned her Associates of Arts degree as a Running Start student, Haley Franich’s primary focus will be earning her bachelor’s degree.
“While wrestling in college would be a fantastic opportunity, for the time being I have decided to pursue my career goals instead. By the time I graduate high school I will have already earned my Associates of Arts degree and in the fall I will be starting right into my Bachelor program at Arizona State University,” Haley Franich said. “Unfortunately they do not have a female wrestling program at the moment but in the next year or two will be starting one. Who knows, I might get back into it after all.”