Happy wrestler: Nashwauk-Keewatin’s Milstead, born with Down syndrome, brings bubbly personality to the mat

Cruising along undefeated at the Hibbing Invitational in early January, Coon Rapids’ Isaiah Thompson wasn’t thinking about improving to 5-0 as he prepared to wrestle Alex Milstead at 160 pounds.

Thompson instead was hatching a plan to lose. He executed it flawlessly.

Minutes later, Milstead — a Nashwauk-Keewatin sophomore with Down syndrome — had himself a second-round pin and a raucous celebration. Uninhibited, and with the crowd howling its approval, Milstead danced. He flexed his muscles. He beamed his infectious smile.

Amid the hoopla, and when Milstead was done high-fiving anyone with a hand, Hibbing’s cheerleaders presented him with the customary safety pin that signifies a takedown. Continue reading at www.duluthnewstribune.com