It was a clash of friends and rivals at the National Preps wrestling championships on Saturday as Landon’s Joel Brown faced off against St. Mary’s Ryken’s Clayton Gabrielson for the third time in as many weeks. Brown had emerged victorious in their two previous encounters, but Gabrielson was determined to even the score.
The match got off to a strong start for Brown, who took an early lead. But Gabrielson quickly responded with a takedown, evening the score and setting the stage for a fierce battle on the mat.
In the end, it was Brown who emerged victorious once again, with a 6-3 decision that secured third place for him and marked the highest finish for a Landon wrestler at the tournament in Coach Andy Katz’s 28-year tenure.
But the win was bittersweet for Brown, who had to defeat his close friend and former roommate to achieve it.
“We were inseparable,” Brown said of his relationship with Gabrielson, who is committed to wrestle at Maryland. “I want to see him succeed, but to be the one that beat him just stinks.”
Gabrielson, for his part, was emotional after the loss but still proud of his friend’s accomplishment.
“That’s the type of rivalry that just makes us both better as wrestlers,” he said.
In addition to Brown and Gabrielson, several other wrestlers from the area placed at the tournament, including St. Mary’s Ryken’s Mekhi Neal, who fell just short of a championship win in the 150-pound finals.
Despite the strong showing from local wrestlers, there was a sense of disappointment among the competitors who didn’t take home top honors.
“They’re happy for the team and the success, but they’re not satisfied with how they finished,” St. Mary’s Ryken Coach Jason Gabrielson said. “It’s a good accomplishment, but that sting of not being first is going to take a little bit.”
Still, the tournament was a testament to the talent and tenacity of the wrestlers who competed, and a reminder of the fierce rivalries and enduring friendships that can be forged on the mat.
Did you just copy the plagiarize the Washington Post article? Where have you guys been all season bro!
No, it is not plagiarized. It was used as a guide and also looking online at stats. Unfortunately I am one person and cannot attend every sporting event for every high school in the county. I get what I can.
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