- The following article was submitted by Lori Sokoll
What does it take to be the best? Lakeland varsity wrestling coach Matt Bishop will tell you it's very simple -- you work harder than anyone else.
As Bishop leads his squad into his fourth season as head coach, he continues to prove why his kids value and respect him as a teacher and a leader. Like everything else they do, when he asked them to step it up this summer, Bishop is right there along side his wrestlers.
Three times weekly, the kids hit the mats either at home or often at Brighton High School. Traveling provides exposure to different clinicians and their methods.
Although a highly decorated wrestler himself, Bishop is quick to acknowledge the benefits of training with other skilled teachers and competitors, especially for his upper weight kids.
"A heavyweight needs to practice with someone of equal size and strength" Bishop said.
On June 15, Coach Bishop and assistant coach Lauri Rowley, along with a couple of equally dedicated parents, loaded up their vehicles and set out for the Northern Exposure Duels Tournament in St. Ignace.
Competing under the name "Team Flourish", the boys went 2-3 for the day against some of the top grapplers in the Midwest. Staying two nights at Rowleys Higgins Lake home the boys were able to spend time swimming, boating, tubing and relaxing. This was team bonding at its best as the team returned both exhausted and exhilarated all at the same time.