Shakopee’s Joel Makem Ratzinger and Waconia’s Max McEnelly Recognized as MWCA Ms. and Mr. MN Wrestlers of the Year

The Minnesota Wrestling Coaches Association annually presents the Mr. Minnesota High School Wrestler award to the senior that best exemplifies the highest ideals of high school wrestling in Minnesota. Starting in 2022, the MWCA partnered with MN Women’s Wrestling to also recognize the Ms. Minnesota High School Wrestler award. Judging is based on past performances, citizenship, academics, leadership, and adherence to MSHSL rules. This year the committees are proud to recognize Shakopee’s two-time girls’ state champion Joel Makem Ratzinger and Waconia’s four-time boys state champion Max McEnelly.

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Mahoney, Wagner, and Hackman are MWCA Coaches of the Year

Every spring at tournament time, coaches from each high school section vote for their respective Section Head and Assistant Coach of the Year. Head coach selections are then put on a ballot to be voted on by all coaches at the State Tournament for Class AAA, AA, and A Coach of the Year.

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A two-time state champ going for three, Max McEnelly keeps it simple: ‘I love to dominate’

The Waconia junior heads into the state meet having not lost a match in more than two years.

Max McEnelly still wasn’t quite sure what he was getting into when he ventured to Fargo last summer.

The idea of wrestling on the national stage appealed to McEnelly, who had completed an undefeated high school season for Waconia as a sophomore en route to his second consecutive state championship.

He was good, no doubt. But he was about to compete in the USA 16U Nationals in North Dakota in July, a high level of competition with a style of wrestling, freestyle, that he hadn’t tried much to that point. “I’d only been wrestling freestyle for two or three months,” McEnelly said.

He swept through the 195-pound weight class, beating highly regarded Pennsylvanian Sonny Sasso 11-8 in the finals. Continue reading at →

The Guillotine – February 17, 2022

The February 17, 2022 issue of The Guillotine has arrived! Content in this issue includes: Building a Family Atmosphere – Travis Holt and Becker Wrestling | Finding Balance – Max McEnelly | Lace ‘Em Up | MWCA Report | High School Rankings | Where Have They Gone? – Dan Stifter | View From The Matbird Seat | Performance Nutrition – Good Choices | Ask The Doc | State Tournament Schedule | Officially Speaking.

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Finding Balance – Max McEnelly

By Brian Jerzak

The sports world is littered with stories of athletes who focus so much on their sport that everything else takes a back seat. The media loves to champion how focused elite athletes like Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ quarterback Tom Brady is. Waconia two-time state champion Max McEnelly is one of those rare athletes who is an elite athlete who strives not to be laser-focused on one thing but who strives for balance in his life.

“I have to have a balanced life. Wrestling can’t be the only thing I think about,” McEnelly said. “I try to have fun outside of wrestling, so it is not the thing I am thinking of all the time. When it is time to do my work, I do my work, but when it is time to hang out, relax and be a teenager, I can do that too. I think you should have a balanced life with wrestling.”

Make no mistake, McEnelly strives for balance in his life but is also focused on results.

“The goal is to be a four-time state champion,” McEnelly said. “No one has ever done it at my school. It would mean a lot for my hometown and my family. I go out there with the mentality that I am going to win every match, but I have to stay humble.”

McEnelly’s wrestling career started humbly.

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