By: Brad Balicki
A timeout is called; the competition has been dominating all night and it was Nick Benson’s choice to either accept his defeat or hustle up and come back strong from the 10-point deficit. Benson does exactly that in his match against Bartlett’s Alex Montriband, pinning him in the third quarter and winning the 170-lb. title match in the Upstate Eight Conference Meet at St.Charles East.
His passion for the sport has been present ever since he was around five years old and has cited his inspiration from his father, who was previously a wrestler himself.
“My first meet was exciting but very nerve-wracking, I didn’t know what to expect,” Benson said.
But with his head held high and his arms out once that whistle blows he blasts off onto the mat and is ready for anything that gets in his way.
“…After getting out there and wrestling for about 20 seconds it was just worrying about what’s in front of me nothing else mattered to me,” Benson said.
In reality, Nick wouldn’t have gotten to the level that he is now without countless hours of practice, weight training, and experience on and off the mat.
“The first few weeks of practice are intense because we’re conditioning hard, but after that, they become much easier,” Benson said.
Long hours in practice and outside of practice have honed his skills to the finest that we have ever seen. But his physical attributes are not the only aspect that he has honed over the years,
“In my opinion, Nick has an outstanding personality,” said Christine Foss. “He multitasks Boy Scouts, wrestling and even the amount of time he spends with his friends and family. He is super friendly, caring and sweet to everyone and that’s what I like about him the most. He always puts others before himself and he is really good at giving advice to those who need it.”
Christine’s time with Benson not only was a mutual friendship, but she also was tasked with the job to help coach and keep score for the wrestling team each season.
“My time coaching the wrestling team was great,” Foss said. “The coaches, the wrestlers and the other girls who helped me coach were amazing to work with and we all had a fantastic time.”
It was clear that her passion for helping fellow athletes was overall very inspiring, to say the least and when asked about Benson she responded very enthusiastically.
“Observing Nick throughout his wrestling career shows how much of a hard worker he really is,” Foss said. “I think he is on the Varsity team now, and that’s a huge accomplishment. He is really good at pinning people.”
His skills on and off the mat through every meet he wrestles is always his best effort, his attitude towards the sport is always all out and he never wants to let his guard down. He wants to show his opponents that he can be better than them at all times while still giving you the incentive to try hard.
“In everything he does, he motivates everyone by saying he is better than you,” said Ryan Barrett. “The result is that you would want to try harder to be better.”