For the first time since the 1970s, Vanguard welcomes back its wrestling team. Through Caleb Flores’s coaching style and the team’s relationship with one other, they seek to re-establish the wrestling program and start competing this upcoming winter season.
Head coach Flores has a positive outlook for the team this season.
“My goal is to consistently seek progress throughout the season. If we stay true to the process through practice and playoffs, we will be ready for when nationals come around,” Flores said.
Flores fosters a strong sense of community and fellowship by encouraging the team to be well-rounded, not only as athletes but as men as well.
“Wrestling isn’t just a sport, but a lifestyle. What we do behind the scenes will inevitably show up on the mat. Staying dedicated and committed is key,” Flores said.
According to the team’s first recruit, freshman Sunny Luna, the team dynamics during practice come from their close relationships off the mat.
“Although everyone on the team is from different backgrounds, we are bonded like a family. We have each other’s backs, and this shows in how we push each other during practice,” Luna said.
Despite wrestling being such an individualized sport, Flores manages to incorporate faith into his coaching style.
“We have to be strong physically, spiritually, and mentally. Nothing great happens in your comfort zone, and it’s important to find the courage to take a leap of faith,” Flores said.
According to Flores, it is important for the team to be trailblazers and set the culture for the wrestling program. Although this can pose as a difficult feat to accomplish, he has faith in the team.
“Our team is full of good players, but even better people. It’s a great group of young men who are up to the challenge,” Flores said. “Wrestling isn’t just a sport, but a lifestyle.”
According to Flores, the team is prepared and ready to represent the brand new program.
“We’re all excited for the journey that we are on as a team. The team is growing each day, and how we handle the tough times will dictate where the season goes,” Flores said.
The team’s first home dual meet takes place on Nov. 7 against San Francisco State University at 7:00 p.m.