Garrett Reinsfelder joins Shaler wrestling’s 100-win club

Sunday, January 7, 2018 | 11:00 PM

Neil Reinsfelder doesn't want to be a helicopter parent. Nor does he want to be the type of parent who takes glory from his kid's accomplishments.

But watching his son, Garrett, collect his 100th career victory at the Powerade Tournament was a special moment for father and son. Garrett became the 11th wrestler in Shaler history to reach the century mark in victories.

Garrett (105-30) sometimes asks for his father's help getting ready for matches, and they talk through various elements and approaches. Neil enjoys giving advice but doesn't want to be too pushy about it.

“I don't want people to think I'm living my dreams or aspirations through my kid,” Neil Reinsfelder said. “It feels good to be a part of someone's future who enjoys something you did when you were young. I helped coach him since he was 5 until junior high.

“I coached him in baseball since he was five. As a parent, to coach or compete with your son or daughter is a great feeling.”

Garrett, a senior, continued his success last weekend, winning the 132-pound class at the Tool City Invitational in Meadville. It was his second victory in an individual tournament after winning the same weight class at West Mifflin last season.

Unlike his dad, Garrett starting wrestling from a young age. Placing at Powerade was a big deal to Garrett, who wasn't sure what to think going in.

“I asked myself the same question,” he said about his expectations. “The day before the tournament, my plan was to get one win. I ended up beating two kids ranked ahead of me in the state.”

Hitting 100 wins always was going to be an important milestone for Garrett, who was a teammate of the last Shaler wrestler to hit the mark, Mike Heinl.

“Since my freshman year I was looking forward to it,” Garrett said. “Each year I was on track for it. I just needed to stay healthy.”

Garrett still has several barriers he wants to knock down. He's placed third in section twice but hasn't had a chance at a title. Making states is the ultimate goal. He said he just needs to find the right mindset.

“I warm up for an hour or two before every match, but I think about them for a week or two in advance,” he said. “I think about what moves the person I'm wrestling uses, if I wrestled them before or how I'm going to approach the match. Sometimes I psych myself out. It's all about keeping control. Sometimes I go out and jump the gun.

“It's an individual sport when it comes down to it. The sky's the limit when you are in control. I enjoy that aspect of the sport.”

Josh Rizzo is a freelance writer.


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