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Sports, St. Cloud State — February 18, 2013 at 5:52 pm

Pinning down a legacy

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ST. CLOUD,MN- Success is a regular word associated with St. Cloud State’s wrestling program. Another year for the record books as last Thursday they clinched their 2nd straight Northern Sun Conference championship. The win also tied a national NCAA Division II record of 47 consecutive dual match wins previously held by Pittsburgh-Johnstown back in 1996.

This years squad has several top wrestlers but one stand out is Sr Coon Rapids native Shamus O’Grady whom almost didn’t come to SCSU. Shamus is currently the top middleweight wrestler in the country with an impressive 29-1 record. On top of being the nations best O’Grady is also part of the cross country and track team. He says his love for running goes back to his childhood. Being able to run is why O’Grady chose to wrestle as a Husky for his collegiate career. “Coach (Costanzo) said I could run here and also be on the wrestling team..so St. Cloud it was.”

Early on in his college days O’Grady met a former gold medal olympian John Peterson who introduced O’Grady to a campus ministry called Athletes in Action. Through Athletes in Action O’Grady took a visit to Mongolia. There O’Grady learned how to “wrestle with the glory of God” and pass that message along to children of that country. Wrestling in the name of God is a skill that O’Grady says is part of him now and wants it to be part of his legacy at SCSU.

Sr. Shamus O’Grady improving to 29-1 Thursday night against Mankato

O’Grady is a unique, ultra athlete. Head wrestling coach Steve Costanzo says is “…something I haven’t seen much of in my coaching career.” Costanzo recently picked up his 100th win in his 7th season as head coach at SCSU. “Shamus is very creative…with his leadership and work ethic whatever he decides to do in life he will be successful at it.” Costanzo said about his senior All American.

Both O’Grady and Costanzo agree that the ultimate goal for the team this season is to bring home a national championship. The Huskies have come up in 2nd place the past two seasons and are looking to change that this year. Armed with several 2013 anticipated All Americans the post season schedule starts next week in WaterLoo Iowa.

Only time will tell if this is the year, but one thing that is for sure is the hard work and determination that has been put in to be the best on the mat and ultimately pin down a long lasting legacy with one of the best upcoming wrestling programs in the country.

 

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