Soroco wrestling tournament celebrates coach, accomplishments |

Soroco wrestling tournament celebrates coach, accomplishments

Gene Bracegirdle hugs his dad after medaling at the Soroco High School wrestling tournament Saturday.
Matt Stensland

OAK Creek— Some milestones and legacies were celebrated Saturday during the six-school, regional wrestling tournament at Soroco High School in Oak Creek.

On the mats, Soroco took second place as a team at their home meet after taking the top spot last year.

Sophomore Gene Bracegirlde walked to his dad all smiles with a big hug after winning a match that put him on the podium.

“This is the first medal that I’ve placed in high school, and my highest place in high school,” Bracegirdle said.

He said it meant alot to accomplish that during a tournament at home.

“I really got motivated last year because I missed going to state by one place,” Bracegirdle said.

Off the mats, the attention turned to assistant coach Travis Burggink.

He said he was “surprised as hell” when it was announced to the crowd that the school was naming the wrestling room after him.

The coach has spent countless hours volunteering his time with the athletes, and the 1984 Soroco graduate already has his name on the gym wall for being a state champion.

“I always loved the sport,” Burggink said. “It gave me a lot of self confidence.”

Head coach Jay Whaley said the school board came up with the idea of naming the wrestling room after Burggink, who works at Twentymile Coal Mine.
“This year alone, 50 percent of his vacation time is taking kids to wrestling tournaments,” Whaley said.
To reach Matt Stensland, call 970-871-4247, email or follow him on Twitter @SBTStensland.

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