Prep Wrestling

Xavier's Christian Stanek finds home on wrestling mat - by mistake

HS journalism: Saints sophomore was eighth in state as a freshman

Xavier's Christian Stanek (left) works to gain control of Dubuque Hempstead's Joe Pins during their Class 3A 132-pound q
Xavier’s Christian Stanek (left) works to gain control of Dubuque Hempstead’s Joe Pins during their Class 3A 132-pound quarterfinal match at the state wrestling championships at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines. Stanek placed eighth last year as a freshman and has big goals for this season. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)

CEDAR RAPIDS — As the high school wrestling season came to a close last season, Xavier freshman Christian Stanek already had made a name for himself.

He qualified for state as a freshman and placed eighth in Class 3A at 132 pounds.

Stanek has a passion for wrestling, but his love for the sport all began because of a mistake.

When Stanek was younger, he brought home a pamphlet advertising what he thought was boxing. As it turned out, it was for wrestling. So, at the age of 5, his journey began.

As the 2019-2020 season begins, his love for the sport is pushing him to reach new heights. Stanek is working hard this season and is hopeful for what the future might bring.

“I’m looking forward to getting better and the goal is to win state,” he said.

To gear up for matches, Stanek and his teammates work hard in practice and, even on his days off, Stanek still is putting in work on his own.

“I practice every day, even when we don’t have practice,” Stanek said. “ I will still do something on my own to get better.”

As Stanek works toward his goals, he is supported by his parents and teammates.

Even though he is only a sophomore, Stanek is a leader in the wrestling room. Working hard while also cracking jokes, he shows the team what it takes to be a great wrestler.

“He leads by example. He works hard, but still has fun with wrestling,” teammate Eddy Rodriguez said.

Stanek might have planned to be a boxer once, but today he is found a home on the wrestling mat.

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