BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - From a running start to the cold water, Thompson’s tradition of jumping into the fountain at the Von Braun Center in Huntsville all began in 2011.
“We finished in fourth place the year before so we’re pulling up and one of the kids was like hey coach, if we win can we jump into the fountain and I said sure because I really didn’t think we would win,” said Thompson Wrestling Coach Shawn Weltzin.
But they did. Thompson won its first-ever state championship that year and the program took off from there. If Thompson wins on Saturday, it would be their fourth straight championship and 9th in 11 years. For senior wrestler Will Miller, it motivates him to want to win every year.
“It’s fun and super cold. It’s just like the feeling of being there and knowing the state tournament is going on, it’s always fun and exciting,” said Miller.
So what makes this program so dominant? The athletes simply say their work ethic and the legacy that the teams before them left.
“We come in everyday and work hard and we push ourselves to the limit. If we win the year before, we’re going to want to win again, we always have a target on our back,” added Miller.
Although the location of the 7A Championships is different this year due to COVID-19, Thompson hopes to continue their tradition if they’re able to hold up another blue map.
“If the opportunity comes, we have some contingency plans in place,” Weltzin said.
A cold-water tradition that warms their heart. The 7A Championships are being held in Birmingham at Bill Harris Arena.