Wilbourn wins national wrestling championship

Wilbourn’s first opportunity to prove himself on the national level presented itself last weekend, and much like with the state championship, he did not disappoint. Winning the first national championship that Francis Howell Central has ever seen and just the second national championship that any wrestling team in the St. Louis area has ever seen, Wilbourn completed his high school career at the highest level of competition he could.

According to Wilbourn, the national championship was even bigger for him than the state championship, which he had never thought would be possible.

“Winning the state championship was the biggest thing I had ever dreamed of,” said Wilbourn. “I never even imagined a national wrestling championship, and when it happened I was overwhelmed, ecstatic, and words can’t even describe what I was feeling.”

This tournament was a folkstyle tournament. Folkstyle meaning that it is more controlled than freestyle, and the point system is different. In early July, there is the national freestyle tournament being held in Fargo, North Dakota, and even though Wilbourn says that he likes freestyle wrestling better and would love to attend the tournament, it will be up to his new head coach at the University of Nebraska to determine whether he will go or not.

“My coach [at Nebraska] will be the one making the decision as to whether I get to go to Fargo or not,” said Wilbourn. “I really want to, but I won’t do something he doesn’t want me to.”

Wilbourn will leave for his new home June 7, just two days after graduation. He will enroll in summer school and begin practice with his new teammates over the summer, closing a chapter in his life and career that he will never forget.

“I am really going to miss high school wrestling,” said Wilbourn. “It is just really good to be going out on top.”