Wrestling team brings their all to Oceana tournament

Under the direction of Mike Tang, Oceana High School hosted their 8th annual Shark Shootout on Jan. 18. The tournament featured 21 different high schools from across the peninsula ranging from Half Moon Bay and Saint Francis to, of course, Carlmont High School.

Although the Carlmont wrestling team is currently not featured in the Peninsula Athletic League (PAL), this tournament was still important training as they continue to develop as wrestlers and as a team.

“Sometimes the team goes to invitationals; they compete against other schools that they wouldn’t normally compete against. But this sport you have to go to tournaments and compete against everybody to get better,” Joe Patane, wrestling team coach, said.

As the team continues to grow, Patane has many hopes of returning next year even bigger and better. Within the last few years, Patane has seen massive improvements in Carlmont's wrestling. They no longer have to practice at Sequoia High School and the amount of female wrestlers - and participation in general - has increased dramatically. The team has had good feedback for Patane and Mark Peasley, the assistant coach.

"They're awesome. They're helpful and they're supportive."

said Clayton Monge, junior, in regards to Patane and Peasley.

However, Patane continues to raise his expectations. He hopes to eventually get 30 wrestlers on the team - almost double the team members they have now. Currently, though, Patane is solely focused on this season and getting his team certified in the PAL for next year.

Despite the ambitious aspirations for next year, both Patane and team captain, Reid Rodriguez, are incredibly happy with what they’ve seen so far. Being in wrestling takes dedication and perseverance, and many of this year’s players have demonstrated their willingness to go the extra mile.

“Most of the wrestlers on the team are new, so they didn’t really have to come out for us, but they just wanted to try it,” Rodriguez said. “And most of them have stayed. I appreciate it.”

Oceana’s Shark Shootout perfectly outlined the strength and endurance that is drilled into each wrestler through hours of practice. However, much to their dismay, after an almost 10-hour long tournament, Riordan High School ranked first place.

Yet, many of the wrestlers and Patane remain optimistic. Although they didn’t rank first, they still won several matches against the Hillsdale Knights and Lynbrook High School.

“Sometimes, it gets really tough. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. But I always say that you have to be a good loser to be a good winner,” said Patane.