The student news site of Westford Academy

WA Ghostwriter

The student news site of Westford Academy

WA Ghostwriter

The student news site of Westford Academy

WA Ghostwriter

    New captains elected

    By Kai-Lou Yue
    News Editor 

    Cournoyer, Peternell, and McDonough

    At Westford Academy, winter sports have just begun. Most teams are aware of their captains for the season and WA Wrestling is no exception as seniors Austin Cournoyer, Adam Peternell, and Tommy McDonough prepare to step up as wrestling co-captains for their winter sports season.

    The three captains were chosen by their teammates through a process of voting at the end of last season.

    “The process is just that everybody puts in a vote, […] everybody gets one vote, and you can vote for whoever you want […] And the [ones] who got the most votes were us three, and then the coaches have the final decision,” said Cournoyer.

    They believe they were chosen because of their work ethic, and they are aware of their responsibilities as captains of the tea m. Besides leading cardio and stretches at the beginning of practice, their responsibilities include making sure everyone is focused on the common goal of being a successful team.

    “Wrestling is definitely a super tough sport, and you have to be really committed and have a lot of dedication, and we’re definitely really dedicated and it’s kinda our job to keep the other kids dedicated, since it’s easy to lose track of what’s the goal,” said Peternell.

    They are also looked up to as examples by the other wrestlers on the team because of their experience with the sport.

    “We just kinda have […] the most knowledge, because I know kids come up to me and ask me [for] good ways to cut weight, and then kids go up to [Peternell and McDonough] asking how to do a certain move,” said Cournoyer.

    McDonough added, “We’re also kinda held up there as examples. Like, kids can look at us and see what being a great wrestler is.”

    Cournoyer started wrestling in kindergarten at the insistence of his football coach at the time, while both Peternell and McDonough started in 7th grade; the former because his friends started, and the latter after getting urged to by a wrestling coach during a football practice.

    They wrestle for the school’s team only during the winter season, but according to McDonough, it is difficult to be able to wrestle well without practice throughout the year.

    “Wrestling takes a lot of preparation and a lot of practice, and the only way to get that practice is to find some way to wrestle outside of [the winter season],” he said.

    As a result, McDonough wrestles all year round outside of school, while Peternell wrestles during the spring, summer, and part of the fall season. Courn also wrestles off season, but not as much as McDonough and Peternell as he prefers to maintain his physical fitness as a whole, rather than just wrestling skills specifically.

    Outside of school and wrestling, the seniors also have other interests. Peternell runs cross country to stay in shape and to build endurance for wrestling, and he also enjoys playing guitar. Like Peternell, Cournoyer plays guitar, but also enjoys playing the drums. Additionally, although he did not participate in football this year, he had played the sport since kindergarten.

    Besides being team captains because of their dedication to the sport, they also perform well individually.

    Last year, Peternell ended the season with a 25-6 record, Cournoyer ending with 20-18, and McDonough with 38-8. McDonough was also the only person from WA to go to All-States; in order to get to All-States, one has to first win at sectionals, then place at states.

    As a whole, the wrestling team also did well, and got extremely close to becoming DCL champions, but lost to Wayland High School.

    “It came down to the final match […] it was just how it worked out that we were almost tied at the end, but if we had won that match we would have won the DCL, but we lost,” said Cournoyer.

    However, this year, the co-captains have high hopes for team’s success.

    “[This season] I think we should be at least top 15 in the state,” said McDonough.

    Outside of looking forward to many successes, the captains are excited to be back into the swing of the season with the team.

    “I can’t wait to get back in the room and see how everyone has improved […] I know how close the team is going to be this year; we were close last year, but I think this year it’s going to be basically like family,” said Cournoyer.


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