Cooper Fleming

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Granby Memorial High School Senior

Age: 17

Tell about yourself…

I have always lived in the Farmington Valley and  in Granby since fourth grade. I played Pop Warner football in my early elementary school years but soon realized that wrestling is my passion. Right around my fourth or fifth grade years, my three brothers and about six other students, (two kids from Simsbury, one a friend of mine), and a coach, formed a wrestling club. The club is called Fisheye and we have meets throughout the school year. During the winter months, I also wrestle for Granby high school.

Although it is an individual sport, all of us in the club especially share a great sense of camaraderie. Our coach has a very positive attitude and some of us have been together in this group for nine to 10 years. We wrestle now in big tournaments in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York and Connecticut. Our team players come from various towns in Connecticut including Manchester, Southington and Enfield.

On the high school team there is also a sense of direction. Five years ago the wrestling coach left Granby and a new coach, Nick Watson, who grew up in Granby, took over. Two years ago we won the State title and this was the first state championship. Over the past three years we have won the conference.

Our smallest weight class is 106 pounds. One of the students on our team weighs in at 85 pounds and is noticeably smaller than the rest of us. When he gets a match and wins he jumps up in the air, throws up his hands and shows super enthusiasm because often he has to forfeit matches. It is a blast to watch.

What excites you about the future?

Thinking of myself, I am looking forward to independence. I would like to be a high school teacher, maybe a coach. Thinking of our world, I will be glad to have self-drive cars since this will most likely make the roads safer. With fewer accidents one big stress in people’s lives will be removed.

Tell about the best time you ever had at Salmon Brook Park…

This past summer I went running on a pretty regular basis with my dad in the park. He is a long distance marathon runner. We did all the trails there and I especially liked running by the stream. It was a good place to cool down and I enjoyed the talks we had. He has taught me to slow down and pace myself and proper breathing to maximize endurance. I also did some yoga sessions that were helpful.