SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ - Scotch Plains-Fanwood varsity wrestler Brian Lapham currently holds a 17-1 individual record in his 145-pound weight class, but he is still looking for more.
At the Union County Wrestling Tournament, he finished runner-up to Westfield’s Matt Barber in a tight 5-2 decision.
“The loss motivates me a lot,” said Lapham. “I've just got to pick myself up, get back at it, and get the win for next time.”
The loss, however, is seen as motivation for Lapham as he attempts to achieve his end goal of placing in states.
“I do not see anyone who had worked as hard as I have in the offseason, so I want to make it to the podium,” said Lapham. “It’s not going to be easy, but when is wrestling ever easy?”
For Lapham to achieve his goal of placing in states, he will have to win districts for his weight class.
Even though Lapham has been successful throughout the year, the team's performance hasn't quite kept pace with Lapham's individual feats. The Raiders have lost tough matches to Union County foes Brearley and Cranford, and they did not place in the top three at counties.
“If I were to grade my season so far, I would give it a 'B',” said Lapham. “The record may sound nice, but I lost my most important match (county finals) to an opponent I believe I had a good shot against. Hopefully I can avenge that loss and bring the grade to an 'A'.”
Lapham and the Raiders have some big matches coming up in the near future, including a match against rival Westfield at Scotch Plains-Fanwood High School on Jan. 31 at 7 p.m.