NORWALK, Conn. -- Three girls from the Norwalk Mad Bulls wrestling club saw great success as they competed in the recent state tournament.
Led by veteran wrestler Calli Gilchrist, last year’s tournament runner-up, the girls had an outstanding day with two state championships and a third-place finisher.
“Calli has been waiting for this moment all year long," said Chrissy Santalucia-Cormier. “She came so close last year, this year she was focused and was dedicated every single day in practice working on her technique, today I am a proud mother and coach."
Gilchrist was crowned the state champion moments before her teammate and newcomer Mariana Hernandez took the mat and pinned her way to secure back-to-back championships for the Mad Bull girls.
“Mariana Hernandez has been competing against the boys all season long in practice and tournament competitions, she has medaled in five tournaments for us this year. What an outstanding young lady who happens to be a tough wrestler as well,” head coach Art Schad said.
Gilchrist and Hernandez embraced and celebrated for a brief moment before turning their attention to unfinished business for the final match of the day.
Next up for the Mad Bulls and taking center stage in wrestle backs was second-grader Rylee Donohue, who was moved up a weight class and age group and battled her way into the wrestle-back finals to determine third place.
Donohue trailed 8-3 in the third period in her match before confidently securing a takedown and back points and pinning her opponent with seconds left in the match.
“We preach about finishing strong, staying focused and having mental toughness all season long,” Schad said. “These girls really had some fun this season, they wrestled extremely tough competition and learned a lot about themselves today, as always, we’re all proud of their effort."
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