Reinvigorated and Wrestling for Championships

Katerina Lange

By Brian Jerzak

When Martin County West's Katerina Lange finished up her freshman year of high school, she had been wrestling for ten years. Although she enjoyed the sport, something was missing for her. Wrestling had been such a big part of her life that she needed to find out more about herself outside of wrestling. Two years later, Lange's love of wrestling was reinvigorated. Now, she has a Pan-Am title to her name and national titles and world team aspirations in her future.

"My sophomore year, I took a break from wrestling to explore myself outside of the sport," Lange said. "I had been in wrestling my entire life. It had become too much of me. I came back last year. I realized I still had a lot of wrestling in me. I felt good, and from there, I decided I still had a passion for it."

During her time away from wrestling – among other things, she played on the basketball team for two years.

"When I came back, I felt like I had a new perspective with wrestling," Lange explained. "Before I took the break, I felt like it was a win/lose game, and there was nothing else in it for me. Taking the break gave me a new mindset. It was something I needed."

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Preseason National Girls High School Rankings

Pound-For-Pound and Top 25 Rankings

The National Wrestling Hall of Fame, USA Wrestling, and FloWrestling has published the Preseason Rankings for high school girls wrestlers for the 2021-22 season. This national ranking evaluates all girls enrolled in grades 8-12, and athletes from all 50 states are eligible for selection.

Last year’s high school graduates have been removed, and many new athletes have joined the rankings for the first time, including eligibility for incoming eighth-graders.

The event which clearly had the most impact on the rankings was the record-setting USMC Junior and 16U Nationals in Fargo, North Dakota, July 16-23, which set entry records in both age divisions and featured spectacular competition in all weight divisions.

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2021 MWCA Fall Clinic Will Be A Virtual Conference

Due to the uncertainty around Covid-19 and crowd sizes, the Minnesota Wrestling Coaches Association Advisory Committee has decided to make the 2021 Fall Clinic on Saturday, October 30th a Recorded Virtual Conference. There will be no live sessions this year.

The MWCA will be collaborating with Rules Officials, College Coaches, Clinicians, and other vendors to create recorded videos that will be shared with MWCA members to watch when it is convenient for the members.

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A Perfect Pairing

Isaac Novacek and Badger/Greenbush-Middle River Wrestling

By Brian Jerzak

Sometimes coaches come into a program, and for whatever reason, they just don't fit. Be it personality, different technique, or familiarity with the people in the area, things sometimes don't work out. Then there are other times when a coach and a program seem meant to be. That is the case with Badger/Greenbush-Middle River's wrestling program and head coach Isaac Novacek. It was a pairing, years in the making.

"My dad is an assistant wrestling coach in Greenbush," Novacek said. "He is from a wrestling family from around Greenbush. My mom grew up in Mahnomen, and she grew up in a wrestling family too. I have been going with my dad to wrestling practice since I could walk."

It didn't take long for the younger Novacek to make his mark on the Gators' program.

"I don't think I was that good my first year. The older I got, the more I bought into it. I won a youth title in 4th grade, 6th grade, and 8th grade. When I transitioned to high school, I took sixth (at State) as a freshman, won a state title my sophomore year, and got third my junior year. I made it to State as a senior but didn’t place."

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