Viking wrestlers prepare to compete at State

The end of the season is coming up and that means it is almost time for the State championship tournament. This is where the top athletes from each weight class go to compete for the last time of that season for the prize of the year—the title of State champion.
Winning this title is the pinnacle of any high school athlete’s wrestling career. This title will increase opportunities to get recruited to division one colleges as well as getting invited to compete in regional and national competitions for those titles.
Junior Tucker Hanson wrestles in the 154-pound weight class and has been wrestling since he was very young.
“This will be my second time competing for State. It is tough preparing for State. Everyone on the team starts to get burnt out towards the end of the season. You lose a lot of your wrestling partners. It is just tough because there are not as many people the further into the season that you go,” Hanson said. “I think going to State is the best part of wrestling. It is the biggest payoff of the season. You get to see the results of all the hard work you put in during the season. I am just really excited for it.”
Junior Jordyn Bartelson wrestles at the 120-pound weight class.
“My dad was a coach and I have [wrestled] pretty much my whole life growing up I guess. I have competed at State twice,” Bartelson said. “I go to practice every day. I run extra on my own. I even stay after practice to get more work in. I play soccer so I get some cross training done too. The most rewarding part of wrestling is winning State. The competition is tougher though. It is the best of the best going to wrestle each other in the finals.”
Sophomore Joshua Franich’s dad is the coach of his wrestling team.
“I am really excited to go to State this year. It is my first time actually going to state in high school. I have to run more and get in better shape to be ready. I know that it is going to be a lot harder for me once I get further into the season and I just want to be prepared,” Franich said.
The State championship tournament will be held in the Tacoma Dome this year Feb. 20 and Feb. 21. The Puyallup Vikings will have several athletes in the tournament.