Zechariah Newton Senior Focus – January 11


When he entered Seymour Middle School, Zechariah Newton wanted to take up a sport.

Since he wrestled when he was younger, he decided to return to the mat.

He said that was a good decision.

“I just like the feeling of winning a match because sometimes, you can feel like the work that you do to get there is a little hard to continue with, but once you win a match, it just pays off. It’s just a really good feeling,” he said.

The Seymour High School senior said his experience has really helped.

“It has just kind of shaped me into a better wrestler,” he said. “I’ve learned things along the way. The more you experience stuff, the more you’ll know what to do in situations. You become more aware.”

Growing up, Newton said he wasn’t the most athletic kid.

“But I thought that wrestling could help me be a better athlete, and I’ve enjoyed it,” he said. “I got onto the middle school team in sixth grade, and I’ve been wrestling ever since.”

For part of his freshman year, he wrestled in the varsity lineup.

“I had a varsity spot for a little bit, and by the time sectional came around, I wrestled off and got a spot, so I lettered,” he said.

Newton said he started the season wrestling at 126 pounds, but he wrestled at 152 in the sectional.

He has wrestled at 152 pounds for each of the last three seasons, and this winter, he has a record of 20-10 heading into Saturday’s Hoosier Hills Conference Tournament. He is seeded fifth going into the tournament.

He said all of the wrestlers’ matches are videotaped, and he studies the tape before he faces a wrestler for the second time.

“Last year, we got this program where they record us and put it on this machine so we can watch,” he said. “I like to look at what I did wrong the last match and try to fix it in practice.”

Newton said getting the first takedown in a match is important.

“Some kids are really good, but they’ll give up if you take them down first. It just breaks people. Our coaches tell us to control the tie,” he said. “Some people wrestle from a distance, and some people like to come in close. I prefer to come in close and control the tie. I just get in my tie, and whatever pops up first, I try to hit it.”

Starting the second or third periods, Newton said it depends on the score whether he chooses top, bottom or neutral.

“Usually, I would take bottom because you can score form bottom if you get an escape or a reversal,” he said. “I usually see what my coach wants me to do.”

Newton said his strategy depends on who he is wrestling.

“If I feel in a match that I know I’m going to win, I try to hit new things so I can do it in an actual match,” he said. “Sometimes, I’m just going for the win, so I’m just trying to get a turn and pin him as fast as I can and get team points.”

To be ready for matches, Newton said he takes practices seriously.

“Practice is really important because you need to maintain your conditioning, and just missing one practice can throw you off,” he said. “You just need to be prepared to battle.”

While wrestling, Newton said he prefers being on the Owls’ home mats because of the crowd support.

He said he likes wrestling on Saturdays where he might wrestle four five times.

“You just go and wrestle, and you don’t have to worry about anything else,” he said. “You always want to go out 100 percent every time. You don’t want to take it easy.”

The offseason also is important for wrestlers. Newton said he likes trying new moves during summer matches.

“If I didn’t go to the offseason practices and wrestle over the summer, I would be nowhere as good as I am because I feel that’s where I’ve built a lot of my strength and gotten a lot of my knowledge of the sport,” Newton said.

In the summer of 2016, he and two other Seymour wrestlers attended a wrestling camp in Pennsylvania.

“The camp was an intensive camp, and it was supposed to help you learn how to drill hard all the time,” he said.

Newton advanced to the semistate last season and is looking forward to getting back to that level again.

“I want to get as far as I did last year and hopefully make it to state,” he said. “I need to work hard and wrestle smart.”

Keeping a good attitude helps wrestlers on the mat, Newton said.

“Our coaches say to tell the little voice in your head to shut up and keep going,” he said.

[sc:pullout-title pullout-title=”Newton file” ][sc:pullout-text-begin]

Name: Zechariah Newton

School: Seymour High School

Parents: Doug and Sheri Newton

Siblings: Even, Briann, Tyler, Noah, John and Boaz

Sport: Wrestling, four years

Athletic highlights: Two-time regional qualifier, semistate qualifier once, outstanding freshman award

Organizations: National Honor Society, band, Key Club

Plans after high school: Attend college and study business

Favorite food: Pepperoni pizza

Favorite TV show: “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia”

Favorite movie: “Lone Survivor”

Favorite team: Kansas City Chiefs


No posts to display