Author Archives: cindyboinis

Vikings Hold Memorable 2017-2018 Wrestling Awards Banquet


This year’s banquet was held at the Carderock Swim and Tennis Club.  We had a great turnout and the event was truly a memorable one.  A big shout out to Shannon Lindstrom is in order for organizing all the moving parts behind this event and ordering the delicious barbeque.  You have set the bar very high and I know we all appreciated it!

During the banquet the coaches talked about the spirit of this team and how they really came together and improved throughout the year. They also spent time speaking about each individual wrestler and how each one evolved and grew throughout the year.  While every story was unique, the themes were similar; each and every wrestler worked hard and made marked improvements this season.  Each wrestler also helped to make this team better and all  were part of the great turnaround to 10 and 4 that was achieved this year.

To make this year’s banquet even more memorable we were fortunate enough to be treated to two videos.  The first video was created by Shannon Turkewitz who put together an exciting montage of photos highlighting each wrestler on the mat this year.  Shannon, along with Chuck Canfield, were our two team photographers this season and supplied all of the action shots for this video.  Thank you Shannon and Chuck for a job well done!

The second video was created by  a group of upperclassman who showcased some of the more memorable events that occurred this season.  I know that all of their coaches, teammates and parents enjoyed this first ever parody of their coaches and other whacky events that transpired this year.  This video was created by Seniors Clark Boinis, John Luke Iglesias and John Mackall as well as Juniors Max Gersch, Mathew Lindstrom, Thomas Santora, Tom Wilmarth and Yussef Zaki with cameo appearances by Colby Fong and Sean Mitchell.  Great job guys! Your impressions of the coaches and other wrestling stories were spot on and this video will be enjoyed for years to come!

As in past years Coach Manon took time at the end of the evening to recognize several grapplers with individual awards.  Coach Manon mentioned that some of these awardees were particularly difficult to select this year as we had so many deserving wrestlers.  Having said that, listed below are the eight individual awards that were presented at the 2017-2018 Awards Banquet.

  • Most Varsity Wins – This award goes to Clark Boinis who had 34 wins this season and sustained only one loss during regular season (non-tournament) competition throughout the entire year.  Clark was also only one of four grapplers this year who wrestled in every dual meet and every tournament, this is despite having his knee pop out a half dozen or so times throughout the year.  Great season Clark!
  • Most Varsity Pins – This goes to John Luke Iglesias who had 19 pins this season.  His total would have likely been higher if he was not forced to take a number of forfeits throughout the season as many opposing coaches did not want any of their wrestlers to face John Luke.  Well done John Luke!
  • Most Improved Varsity – This honor goes to Sebastian Turkewitz this season.  Seb went 21 and 10 this season in the varsity line up.  This was a tremendous improvement from only one varsity win last season and 5 and 5 at the JV level.  Seb was also able to qualify for Regions this year.  We are all excited to see what the next two years hold in store for you.  Great progress Seb!
  • Varsity Coaches Award – Sang Hanna received the Coaches Award this year.  Sang went 17 and 18 this year on the Varsity squad.  Sang also earned his second consecutive first place finish at the JV Viking Quest Tournament. This was a huge step forward from his 2 and 7 Varsity record and his 14 and 3 JV record last season.  Sang also won some very close Varsity matches this year that helped his team achieve victory in several key duals.  Great season Sang!
  • Varsity Mental Toughness Award – As most of you know Max Gersch sustained a serious elbow injury in his first match of the year. Through Max’s hard work and positive attitude he was able to come back ahead of schedule and wrestle the last few duals of the season.  Max was even able to wrestle his way into the Regions.  Great comeback Max!
  • Viking Sportsmanship Award – This is the only award that is actually voted on by all members of the Whitman Wrestling Team.  Formerly known as the Chichester Award, this accolade is given to the Senior wrestler who exemplifies “Dedication, Perseverance, Spirit, Kindness, and Leadership on and off the field”.  This year the team voted Clark Boinis as the recipient of the 2017-2018 Sportsmanship Award.  Clark was a four year varsity wrestler and befriended and mentored many of his younger teammates. His presence on and off the mat will be missed next year.  Great career Clark!
  • Junior Varsity Coaches Award – Luke Cullinane was the recipient of this year’s JV Coaches Award.  Luke wrestled both JV and Varsity this season and amassed a varsity record of 9 and 11 while going 12 and 3 at the JV level.   This is huge step forward from last year when Luke’s record was 5 and 10 at the Varsity level and 7 and 4 at the JV level.   Luke’s progression as a grappler was tremendous this season and we are looking forward to his continued growth and following in his three older brother’s wrestling footsteps.  Great progress Luke!
  • Junior Varsity Most Wins – Stephanie Solloso had 15 JV wins this season, up from 5 victories last year.  Stephanie also placed second at the first annual Maryland State High School Girls Tournament.   We are all very proud of our only female wrestler on the team and the accomplishments she was able to achieve this year.  Great season Stephanie and kudos to you for carrying on the Solloso family wrestling tradition!

Closing Thoughts:  It has been a pleasure being associated with this program over the years.  Cindy and I are very grateful for the discipline, maturity and values wrestling has instilled in our two sons, Christopher and Clark.  We have also been lucky to have had the opportunity to meet and get know such wonderful wrestling families and watch as their children have grown into fine young men and women.  Although next year will be the first in seven seasons that a Boinis will not be on the mat, we are sure the team will continue to thrive and succeed.  Walt Whitman Wrestling is a top notch program and one we have been proud to be a part of.  Go Vikes!

By George Boinis

Three Captains Perform Well at State Tournament

The Maryland State Wrestling Tournament was held on Saturday March 3rd and Monday the 5th at Show Place Arena in Upper Marlboro, Maryland.   The normal tournament format had to be modified this year as extremely high winds forced school closures on Friday, which pushed the start of the tournament until Saturday.  This meant that all rounds, except for the first through sixth place finals, had to be wrestled on day one.  This made for another very long day……which as Whitman wrestling fans we have all become accustomed to.  I know that our three State Qualifiers greatly appreciated the support of their teammates who made the effort to come out and cheer them on.  Many thanks to James Mackall, Thomas Santora, Sebastian Turkewitz, Matthew Lindstrom, Tom Wilmarth, Steven Canfield and former teammate Andrew Shiman as well as some devoted parents.

The Maryland State Tournament is a double elimination tournament with 16 elite wresters in each 3A/4A weight class.  Each of Maryland’s four regions (North, South, East & West) sent their four top Regional Tournament placers to compete in this capstone event.

All three Whitman Qualifiers made our program proud as they wrestled their way through this tournament.  Clark and Yussef each had two convincing wins and went 2 and 2 at the tournament.  These two wins earned both of them top eight finishes in their respective weight classes.

John Luke won three matches on his way to the finals.   His second match was against the number five ranked wrestler in the state from Franklin High School (Elijah Solomon), who he beat 11-5.  He then went on to beat the number three ranked wrestler in the state from Stephen Decatur High School (Caleb Bourne) who was 31-0 before losing to John Luke in a 10 to 8 decision.  John Luke then faced the number one ranked wrestler in the state from C. Milton Wright High School in Bel Air, Maryland in the finals who was 43-0 (Wyatt Graham).   Unfortunately John Luke had injured his knee in the previous match on Saturday and was not 100% going into the finals.  John Luke did however manage to tough it out and compete only to come up a bit short.  Nonetheless it was a fantastic achievement to make it to the finals and place 2nd, beating two higher ranked opponents along the way.

While the 2017-2018 season is now over for our three State Qualifiers, they each can look back and be proud of the performances they turned in, both for their team and individually.

  • Junior Captain Yussef Zaki had 5 wins at the Musselman Duals,  placed 1st at the Grapple at the Brook, 2nd at the Patriot Classic, 4th at the Counties, 2nd at Regionals and Top 8 at States
  • Senior Captain Clark Boinis had 7 wins at the Musselman Duals, placed 1st at the Grapple, 3rd at the Patriot, 2nd at Counties, 3rd at Regionals and Top 8 at States
  • Senior Captain John Luke Iglesias had 5 wins at the Musselman Duals, was 1st at the Grapple, 1st at the Patriot, 1st at Counties, 1st at Regionals, and 2nd at States

These are all truly noteworthy seasons from our team captains.  Their accomplishments serve as testimony to how hard work in the offseason can pay off in the regular season.  They say in wrestling that you get out what you are willing to put in, and that is certainly the case with these three.

It has been an exciting year for the Whitman Wrestling Program.  Aside from the individual accolades the team as a whole has made great strides from where we started at the beginning of the season.  Many of our grapplers have made tremendous improvements as the season progessed.   This speaks volumes to the commitment of our student athletes and the teaching skills of our three very dedicated coaches!

By George Boinis

Three Captains Qualify for States at 4A/3A West Regional Tournament

The Maryland State 4A/3A West Regional Tournament was held on Friday February 23rd and Saturday the 24th at Clarksburg High School.  The tournament format was changed this year as the 25 teams from Montgomery County were split into the 4A/3A West, 4A/3A North and 2A/1A West Regions .  The 4A/3A West Region got the lion’s share of the teams with 17, including Whitman, while the 4A/3A North took 5 and the 2A/1A took 3.  In addition to the Montgomery County Teams the West Region was home to eight teams from Frederick, Carroll and Washington Counties for a total of 26 teams.

Whitman was well represented at the West Regionals with eight grapplers qualifying on points or County Tournament placements.  Those who qualified from Whitman were Peyton Casamento at 120, Clark Boinis at 132, Max Gersch at 145, John Mackall at 160, Sebastian Trukewitz at 170, Yussef Zaki at 195, John Luke Iglesias at 220, and Tom Wilmarth at heavyweight.

Only two schools sent more wrestlers than the Vikings with Churchill and Manchester Valley (Carroll County) both sending 10 while South Hagerstown (Washington County) also sent eight.   Four schools failed to quality any wrestlers and were thus not represented at all.  The rules for advancement from the Regional Tournament were simple, the top four finishers advance to the State Tournament, with the fifth finishers in each weight class being designated as alternates.

Clarksburg High School provided a great venue for Regionals as they are centrally located for all the participating schools and their facilities are spacious and new.  The only downside was having to listen to their raspy voiced announcer for two days who sounded like she needed a box of throat lozenges (or maybe she has an alternate career awaiting her as a public service announcer for smoking cessation).

After two days of tough wrestling three of Whitman’s team captains were able to qualify to advance to the Maryland State Tournament in at the Show Place Area in Upper Marlboro, Maryland.  Those moving on to wrestle next week are:

  • Senior Captain Clark Boinis at 132.  Clark went 3-1 at Regionals.  After a tough loss in the semi finals Clark was able to refocus and wrestle his way back to a third place finish with two convincing wins.  Great work Clark!
  • Junior Captain Yussef Zaki at 185.  Yussef went 2-1 at the tournament, recording a fall in each of his first two matches.  Although Yussef lost in the finals (to the reigning Montgomery County Champion), he has positioned himself well for a run at States.  Well done Yussef!
  • Senior Captain John Luke Iglesias at 220.  John Luke remained undefeated for the entire season showing once again why he is the defending Regional Champion by winning his second consecutive Regional Title.   John Luke recorded falls in his first two matches before facing Shawn King-Pombo from South Hagerstown in the finals.  This was a much anticipated match as Shawn was ranked just ahead of John Luke all season long in the Maryland State Rankings.  These ranking proved to be in error as John Luke easily handled his opponent and won a Major over him by a score of 13-4.  Next up for John Luke is the state title… can do it John Luke!

In addition to those advancing to States we had two other wrestlers who placed in the West Regionals.   Both John Mackall (160) and Sebastian Trukewitz (170) were able to capture 6th place finishes.  These two sophomores will almost certainly be back at Regionals next year along with Peyton Casamento, Max Gersch, and Tom Wilmarth.  All of these battle veterans will be back on the mat next year for the Vikings. Congratulations to all five of you for having great seasons and for your many contributions to the team this year.

Best of luck to Clark, Yussef and John Luke in the State Tournament…..let’s bring home some more podium finishes.  Go Vikes!

By George Boinis