Freshman wrestler wins state title

Chris Dunlaevy, Sports Editor

North Kingstown freshman Kai Gallman won the Rhode Island freshman wrestling State Tournament this February.

Gallman was “pretty happy” to win the state championship, as he said that, “it was what my whole season was building up towards.”

He got started wrestling in the 7th grade, when a friend, Brady Joy, asked him to come try out with him, and he made the team. Gallman ended up winning the 8th grade Varsity State Championship the next year.

In the tournament, Gallman had to play against different opponents from across Rhode Island.

He felt that his opponents “were all pretty easy” and “the one at the very end” was the most challenging. “I was tired, and I had wrestled him before last year, and beaten him twice, and he was kind of good,” Gallman said. “But I pinned him [in the end].”

One obstacle that most wrestlers struggle with is the challenge of making weight before an upcoming match. “Making weight is one of the worst things about being a wrestler, and if you’re stupid about it, you have to do a lot of cardio before a match,” Gallman said. “But if you manage what you eat well enough before a match, it’s ultimately up to you whether [to] snack out, or eat good.”

Many athletes also struggle with maintaining their academic responsibilities outside of school, but this has not been the case for Gallman. “Some people have told me that [athletics] interferes [with school for] them, but I actually started trying harder, because we had an hour and a half-long study hall before practice,” Gallman said. “I would get most of my homework done then, and when I got home, I would do what was left, instead of wasting my time playing video games or watching YouTube.”

Because Gallman is a freshman, many people have been curious about his future goals in high school wrestling. “I want to place in at least the top 4 next year, in varsity states, but if I place in the top 6, I won’t be disappointed,” Gallman said. “But junior and senior year, I want to win the state championship, and senior year, I [hope] to win the New England championship. I don’t know if that’s possible, but I’m going to work really hard for it.”