Parkston's lone senior leads teamPARKSTON — Parkston wrestler Myles Bialas has been told time and time again that he’s a natural leader, but in the wake of the state tournament, it has its pros and cons.
By: Brooke Cersosimo, The Daily Republic
PARKSTON — Parkston wrestler Myles Bialas has been told time and time again that he’s a natural leader, but in the wake of the state tournament, it has its pros and cons.
For the Trojans’ lone senior, it’s “kind of nerve-wracking” being in the leadership role on the championship-favored team heading into the Class B state wrestling tournament, which begins at 10 a.m. Friday at the Barnett Center in Aberdeen.
“If you don’t win the state tournament, some people look at you as if it could be your fault and blame it on you if it doesn’t go right,” Bialas said. “But again, if we do win it, people can give you some of the credit. It’s a team sport, but you’re leading the team as a whole group.”
Parkston coach Jared Digmann, whose team has won all but one tournament this season, said Bialas has helped build the team over the past few years.
“He’s played a big part in leading this team the past two or three years,” Digmann said. “Last year, we didn’t have a senior, so he stepped up into that senior role as a junior. He takes charge and I push a lot back onto him and expect a lot out of him, but he responds and is a great leader.”
Digmann said Bialas sets a great example for his peers and younger kids in the practice room.
“He’s not afraid to grab a younger guy and say, ‘you’re my partner today because you need to learn how to drill right,’ and he helps them learn how to work hard,” he said.
The 138-pounder has a record of 42-11 on the season and is ranked fourth at Class B in his weight class. Bialas has wrestled varsity for the Trojans for six years but was injured for a majority of his freshman and sophomore seasons.
Digmann said Bialas has the potential to do very well in his final tournament in orange and blue.
“He’s probably one of the hardest working guys in our room. If he’s out there wrestling, he’s going as hard as he can,” he said. “Our goal is to get into that state championship match and we’re sitting in a good spot, but every match is going to be tough.”
He qualified for the state tournament last year at 132 pounds and took sixth place. Bialas said his expectations sit much higher this time around.
“I’m hoping to place a little higher than that this year,” he said. “I want that team state championship first, but I’m looking for an individual state championship, too. It’s been my goal this year and my whole life.”
Bialas said the Trojans are going to do everything in their power to bring the state title back to Parkston, which claimed the team crown in 2007.
“I’ve always seen the teams in front of me win state titles, and that’s always kind of been my goal as a team to win a state championship,” he said. “It would mean a lot, and I can’t put it into words how excited I would be to win the state championship.
“But I can’t tell you now because I’m not a state champion.”