Crandon wrestlers headed to state meetSubmitted: 02/26/2015
CRANDON - The state wrestling meet will start Friday, and you'll be able to see a couple of Crandon Cardinals competing for the podium there.

The Crandon community held a pep rally Thursday to send them off to Madison.

"Work hard, dream on," says senior Isaiah Doane. "Things come true if you keep working for them."

That's the mindset of Doane and senior Zach Higgins.

They're just the latest pair of Crandon wrestlers headed to the state wrestling meet.

"I was the happiest I've ever been in my life," says Higgins. "I just immediately got up and screamed, looked at Crandon and all the other people in the conference there. It was just an amazing feeling."

"I went crazy," says Doane. "I was jumping all over the place. Coach actually yelled at me because he just kept telling me I had one more to do, one more to win."

For Doane, a trip to state has been one of his goals since he started wrestling in kindergarten, but he doesn't take any of it for granted.

"I didn't expect state," says Doane. "I just kept it 'there.' Just kept the thought of it going, and just kept dreaming, I guess. And it came true. [It] paid off."

Higgins started wrestling at the beginning of high school, and after some ups and downs in his career, there wasn't a doubt in his mind that he'd be right where he is.

"I expected to at least make it close, because I knew I had the skill and capability of doing it, but I'm just one of the most nervous people out there on the mat, so it was kind of hard going into it," says Higgins.

Neither of them have been to state before, so for both the message going forward is simple.

"Stay calm and wrestle aggressive," says Higgins. "Don't do anything too stupid out there. Just wrestle how I've been wrestling, and then I've got a good chance as long as I keep doing that."

Now that they're state bound, their expectations have increased.

"I'm expecting semi-finals for sure, and it'd be sweet if I get to the finals and wrestle on Saturday night," says Doane. "That'd be sweet."

"[As] long as I win my first match, I think I have a good chance of placing at state," says Higgins. "Hopefully I can come back on the podium. That'd be nice."

Through it all, though, Doane and Higgins have had the steady support of the community behind them.

"[It's] incredible," says Doane. "I've watched the last four or five guys go from when I was in high school, and they all get the same as we have and it's pretty sweet. It's really nice to know the whole community has your back as much as they do."

"Throughout the whole season everybody that's made it down to the tournaments and dual meets, it's been tremendous support," says Higgins. "It helps a lot when you're out there and you hear them cheering."

That support will help them push for the podium this weekend in Madison.

Story By: Dan Marz

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