In the post-Christmas excitement, Palatine High School hosted their biggest wrestling tournament of the season, the 58th Annual Berman Holiday Classic.
Palatine is the only school from District 211 who takes part in the tournament, where they went up against wrestlers from 27 other schools on December 27-28.
Senior Rocky Allen, who is in the 195lb. weight class, took 6th place while Sergio Hernandez, in the 220 lb. weight class and also a senior, placed 8th. Allen and Hernandez were the only two wrestlers from Palatine to place, and the school took 26th overall.
"While we were overmatched in some spots, our team didn’t give up and kept pushing,” said Dan Collins, varsity wrestling coach at Palatine High School.
Collins said the Berman Classic is named for former Palatine High School wrestling coach Al Berman who coached for 20 years before passing away. The tournament, Collins said, has grown over the years, and this year’s competition included teams not only from the immediate area, but also the Quad Cities, East Moline and even Ohio.
Overall, Collins said he is extremely proud of the entire wrestling team’s performance.
“They showed a lot of heart and a lot of drive,” Collins said. “The ones that didn’t get to compete the second day [of the tournament] watched the finals. They showed a true commitment to the sport, they are all great kids.”
The Berman Classic is the second oldest wrestling tournament in the state of Illinois, according to Collins.
The Berman is organized as a double elimination tournament through several brackets over the course of two days. Brackets are determined by the number of competitors in each weight class and each has its own bracket.
The first day of the tournament includes preliminary rounds and each wrestler gets up to three chances to compete. The second day includes the semi-finals and finals.
For more information about PHS wrestling, visit www.palatinewrestling.com.
Palatine High School student and PHS Cutlass writer Carolyn Angiollo contributed to this report.