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The official student newspaper of Walter Johnson High School

The Pitch

The official student newspaper of Walter Johnson High School

The Pitch

Sonia Pegoue, Maddox Zuniga place in states

Sonia Pegoue (left) and Maddox Zuniga (right) celebrate with their medals after the Maryland state championships. Pegoue placed second and Zuniga placed sixth in their respective weight classes.
Courtesy Walter Johnson Wrestling
Sonia Pegoue (left) and Maddox Zuniga (right) celebrate with their medals after the Maryland state championships. Pegoue placed second and Zuniga placed sixth in their respective weight classes.

With the wrestling team participating in the State competitions, the season has officially come to an end. The championship, which was held from Feb. 29 and lasted until Mar 2, featured seven Wildcats competing against schools from across the state of Maryland.

On the boys’ side, all four wrestlers who went to states went 1-2 in the tournament, ending their seasons. That includes Juniors Bahdan Kurepkin and Hudson Barrett, Senior Sawyer Chism, and Sophomore Dan Gershon. Despite this, they all went very far, and have come a long way this season.

“I think as a team we did better than we did last year, both boys and girls included. This season was a good growing period for all of us. I think we got so much better this year and I’m so excited to see what’s going to happen next year,” sophomore Sonia Pegoue said.

For the girls, Pegoue finished second place overall in her weight class and got to compete in the finals match and ended up falling just short of winning.

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“I feel really happy about getting second place, but a little disappointed that my [final] match didn’t go the way I wanted it to. This season was a rough season for me, so I was able to go this far and I was very happy about that,” Peguoe said.

Pegoue in her sophomore year had some ups and downs this season, but nonetheless, she fought through it and finished the season on a high note.

“I’m really proud of Sonia, she worked so hard. She was out for most of the season and then she came back and got right back into it and almost got first place. I’m so proud of her, she should be proud of herself,” junior Maddox Zuniga said.

In addition to Pegoue, Zuniga also placed at states, earning a sixth-place finish in her weight class for her first year on the team. Junior Madeline Barnett also went to states and finished with a 3-2 record in the state competitions.

“For my first year, I feel like I’ve come a long way, at the very beginning I wasn’t confident in myself. But I placed at states which is a pretty big accomplishment. I’m pretty proud of myself for that considering I’ve never [wrestled] outside of school,” Zuniga said.

As a whole, the season went very well for the Cats and they have lots to be proud of in retrospect.

“[The players] spent lots of time throughout the season, all year round getting ready for the playoffs, so they really bought in,” coach Brian Frantz said.

With the season finally coming to a close, the wrestling team turns their focus towards the 2024-25 season. They are going to have time to work hard and train and for the returning players, hopefully, another season filled with improvement is in store for next year.

“We’re growing, last year we were a young team, I think we are still a young team. All of our state qualifiers except for one will come back next year. It takes time to learn how to wrestle, it’s not one year or a few months in order to learn to get to a state qualifier level. So I expect to be even better next year,” Frantz said.

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Jeremy Silberglied, Staff Writer
Sophomore Jeremy Silberglied is thrilled to be in his first year with the Pitch as a Staff Writer. Jeremy is also his grade's class treasurer, and he loves playing sports in his free time.
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