Southampton Indians wrestling preview

Published 11:04 am Friday, December 19, 2014

Steve Wellington, kneeling, readies for a practice match at Southampton High School. -- Andrew Lind | Tidewater News

Steve Wellington, kneeling, readies for a practice match at Southampton High School. — Andrew Lind | Tidewater News

Wrestling is not like other sports, where team success triumphs personal glory and statistics. In fact, wrestling is just the opposite, according to Southampton Indians head coach Tim Mason.

His Indians may have started the year off with a third-place team finish at the Colonial Heights Kickoff Classic, but Mason explained that his main objective is to send his best wrestlers to the state tournament.

“Everyone practices and works out together, so we’re a team in that respect,” he said, “We’ll make each other better in order for us to have some great individual finishes like we did this past weekend. Hopefully, we’ll see that continue throughout the season.”

The team had seven wrestlers place in the tournament, including a first-place finish by sophomore Robert Mack in the 132 pound weight division, a second-place finish by Tim Mason (previewed below) and a handful of third- and fourth-place finishes.

“We have a tough schedule, so it’s going to be tough to have the same group results every tournament,” Mason said. “We travel to Norfolk Collegiate and Sussex, so we’ll definitely have our work cut out for us.”

By the Numbers

4- Southampton had one state tournament participant last year, with the recently-graduated Devine Fenner finishing fourth in his weight class. “There are four who could make it to state this year, and they all placed this past weekend,” Mason said.

14 – Mason mentioned that there are 14 weight classes in which the kids can compete at. However, Southampton only covers 12. “We don’t have any really small, scrawny kids on our team that could compete in the lower-weight classes. Wrestling isn’t one of those sports that you can just go out and pick anybody to come in and compete; they have to want it.”

Cast of Characters

Tim Mason

Tim Mason

No relation to his head coach of the same name, senior Tim Mason offers a blend of quickness and athleticism that will make him a tough matchup for opposing wrestlers. Mason finished sixth at regional tournaments one year ago, but believes he has what it takes to compete at the state level this year. His biggest challenge is maintaining his weight. “I have trouble dropping the weight, but as long as I watch what I eat, I’ll be fine. I just have to drink lots of water and cut out the fried food.” As for his plans after graduation, Mason does not expect many looks from colleges due in part to the school’s small size, but he has a plan. “I’ll go to camps and maybe get noticed there, but I have great grades, so I’ll probably just have to walk on wherever I go.”

Steve Wellington

Steve Wellington

A two-sport athlete, Steve Wellington is a load on both the gridiron and the mat. Surprisingly, though, the 5’10, 235-pound senior feels he needs to get even bigger to compete this season. “There were times that I was often the lightest wrestler in the Heavyweight division. I need to add some weight by hitting that right there,” he said as he pointed toward the weight room. Wellington believes that he can compete at the state level, and in fact, he said that his experience as a defensive tackle on the football team will help him gain an advantage over his opponents. “As a lineman, it’s all about leverage, control and being aggressive. That all translates to wrestling, too.” After he graduates in the spring, Wellington wants to join the Navy or become a diesel mechanic.