State Stories

03

St. Rita's Austin O'Connor Seeks To Become A Part Of IHSA Wrestling History

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The Illinois Matmen story below republished with approval:


Saying that Austin O’Connor has an edge to him is like saying Hawaii has nice beaches; the description doesn’t begin to do justice to the reality.

What do you say about someone who watches video of one of his matches and then shows up at practice the next day with 10 pages of notes on things he wants to work on? Or a high school senior still slightly aggravated about a match he lost when he was six years old? Or someone who breaks furniture during family game time during the Christmas holidays?

“I’ve never wrestled with or been around anybody that wants to win as much as he does,” St. Rita coach Dan Manzella said of O’Connor. “The kid’s tenacity is out of control and so is his will to win. And he’s never happier than when he’s wearing a pair of wrestling shoes.”

Per IHSA website records, Illinois’ first individual state championships in wrestling were awarded in 1937, which means that this season marks the 80th year that state champions will be crowned.

Click here to finish the story on the lllinois Matmen website