WCHS senior Ryan Hammond was encouraged to wrestle and play football when he was only six years old and has been playing both sports since then. He has been given a scholarship to play football at Saint Francis University and this year stood on the 4th place podium at state for wrestling.
Former head wrestling coach Dave Thompson admires how Hammond always tries his best to try new techniques.
“Ryan is a quiet person that leads more by example with his good work ethics. Also, Ryan’s willingness to listen and try new techniques is outstanding; he will never say ‘I can’t’ or ‘I won’t’ in the wrestling room and also strives for improvement,” Thompson said.
Hammond explained why he got into football and wrestling around six years old.
“I got into football because my father played football when he was in high school and so did his brothers. My brother also played football too. Same for wrestling; my father and his brother both wrestled in high school, so I played football and wrestled when I was six,” Hammond said.
The reason why Hammond loves to play football is because it is a contact sport, which provides a healthy way to work off stress; also, since he is a competitive person, he finds winning enjoyable. Wrestling, on the other hand, is a completely different story. Hammond loves wrestling because it is an individual sport.
“When you are on the mat, you can’t blame someone for your lose but yourself,” Hammond said. “Also it gets the family out.”
Hammond admires someone that overcame an obstacle, Anthony Robles. Robles is a wrestler who won the 2010 and 2011 NCAA individual wrestling championship in the 125 pound weight class even though he only has one leg.
“This is my role model because this shows that you can do anything if you believe in yourself and you have the right mindset,” Hammond said.
He would also like to thank his wrestling practice partner WCHS Senior Garrett Curtis for helping him with his dreams to make it back to state after going his freshman year. This year he ended the season off as the forth best wrestler in the state in the 220 pound weight class.
Hammond will be attending Saint Francis University in Fort Wayne next year to play football. He has been signed to play running back for them.
Hammond’s favorite motivational quote comes from Muhammad Ali:
“I hated every minute of training, but I said don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.”