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Team Dover youth is All-American wrestler

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Chuck Walker
  • 436th Airlift Wing Public Affairs
Achieving greatness is something all athletes aspire to, but few seldom obtain. One youth here has accomplished that goal at the ripe old age of 12.

Francis Morrisey, son of Master Sgt. Francis Morrissey III, recently retired from the 436th Maintenance Squadron, won the Eastern Nationals Wrestling Championships in the Junior Division 78-pound weight class May 4-5 in Salisbury, Md.

Morrissey defeated Cole Handlovic in the finals 5-1 to take home the title. With the victory in the Nationals, Morrissey made All-American and finished his season with an impressive 134-17 record which included 38 tournament championships, seven second place finishes and five third place finishes.

"It just proves that hard work pays off," Morrisey said of winning the Eastern Nationals championship. "I love traveling to different cities and I like the competition as well."

With his father retiring from the Air Force last week, Morrissey will have to compete in a different area with different competition. The family will be moving to Bonaire, Georgia, a town near Robbins Air Force Base. Morrissey's father said his son will still wrestle and will also compete in many of the tournaments in and around Delaware.

"We're going to miss Delaware, we have a lot of friends here," Morrissey III said. "He'll take the summer off, then we move into football season and right after that we get back into wrestling. We might squeeze one or two tournaments in during the fall before he gets into it full time again. They don't have middle school wrestling in Georgia, but the people we've talked to seem interested in having him join their club."

Even though Morrisey has accomplished quite a resume as a wrestler already, his father said there are still some areas he would like his son to work on to get even better. He thinks his son has a bright future in the sport, as long as he continues to enjoy it.

"I would like to see him get better on his footwork," Morrissey III said. "His goal is to win the Georgia State Title. We're just excited to go see new competition to be honest. Right now, my long-term goal for him is college. I would like to see him get a nice scholarship ride to college."

Morrisey, whose favorite wrestling move is the arm bar hook, is moving into the 6th grade and is already competing on the American Athletic Union level. Morrisey said he would like to accomplish as much as he can with wrestling.

"I want to be an Olympic champion and a world champion," Morrissey said.