Brooke Downs’ wrestling is more than a sport

Arabella Hounschell

For freshman Brooke Downs, wrestling is her life. 

She started wrestling in third grade with the Derby Wrestling Club because she wanted to keep up with her brother, Jacob.

“I told my mom if Jacob is doing it, I want to support him and understand what he’s doing. So that’s how it started,” Downs said. 

She is ranked sixth at 130 pounds and is 12-2.

Wrestling didn’t come easily at first. 

“My first three weeks of practice I cried every single day, probably more than that. Coach Kelly (Heincker) and every other coach told my dad that they thought I was going to quit,” Downs said.

She has worked for it.

“I workout anywhere from three to five days a week on top of practice,” Downs said.

It hasn’t gone unnoticed. 

¨I think she will be a leader on the team as time progresses,” assistant coach Michael Phillips said. “It’s not always the easiest to step into that role as a freshman, but she will.”

Some see that she has already stepped into the role.

“Brooke comes to practice every day and works her tail off,” wrestling coach Bill Ross said. “She works hard on and off the mat. She’s a good leader. Anytime you’re successful, the other kid on the team will notice that.”