April 24, 2024

Fry pins 100th win

Clarke senior wrestler KJ Fry knew that he was going to secure 100 wins this season, the question was just ‘when,’ and it was answered on Jan. 7 in Winterset at the Gary Christensen Invite.

“I knew that I was pretty close at the beginning of the season, but I didn’t know when it was going to happen. So the match that it did happen, I actually came off the mat and the coaches were congratulating me and I wasn’t really sure why until I turned around and I saw the banner and stuff that they had,” said KJ.

Clarke head wrestling coach Brian Reece commended KJ’s hard work not just this season, but over the years, saying that in the seventh grade, KJ weighed in at about 100 pounds. Today, he wrestles at 195, having worked both during the season and off to put on large amounts of muscle. KJ is the fourth wrestler under Reece to reach the 100-win milestone.

KJ has been wrestling since he was four years old, having started with Mat Club. He said that he enjoys the physical aspect of the sport, and that whatever happens on the mat comes down to the decisions that you make.

“...everything rides on you. You can’t blame your mistakes on anyone else,” said KJ, whose favorite wrestling move is the fireman’s carry.

While wrestling is often considered an individual sport, there is still the sense of team camaraderie that KJ said he feels.

“Everyone supporting each other, everyone wants you to go out and do well, everyone trying to help each other out the best you can. But when you’re on the mat, it’s just you and the other person,” said KJ.

Despite reaching 100 wins, KJ’s season is not yet over, and that is something that Reece has reminded him to not lose focus of.

“100 wins is a reflection of his hard work, but particularly for this season, it’s not his ultimate goal, and he still has some work that needs to be done,” said Reece, as the wrestlers prepare for the state qualifying meet this Saturday at ADM.

After high school, KJ plans to continue wrestling, and plans on that happening at Graceland University in Lamoni. In addition to wrestling, KJ was also on the football team as a running back and linebacker. KJ’s parents are Kenny and Kelly Fry of Osceola.

Candra Brooks

A native of rural Union County, Candra holds a Bachelor's Degree in English from Simpson College and an Associate's Degree in Accounting from SWCC. She has been at the Osceola newspaper since October 2013, working as office manager before transitioning to the newsroom in spring 2022.