By Jarrod Harris
Times West Virginian
East Fairmont High School’s Jesse Roman took his talents to the Virginia Beach Senior Nationals over the weekend to see what he was really made of.
During the tournament, Roman plowed past multiple state champions, accumulating a 5-2 record and tallying a sixth-place finish overall.
Yes, he devoured his competition in West Virginia, but that wasn’t enough. He wanted to go face-to-face with Florida, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and more standouts from this past season.
“It was a good experience,” Roman said. “All the guys in my bracket were the best that the nation had to offer.”
In the NHSCA High School National Wrestling Championships held March 28 through April 1 at the Virginia Beach Convention Center, there were more then 7,000 matches wrestled, and all 28 mats were webcast. A total of 2,704 wrestlers representing 47 states and six countries participated in the 23rd annual event.
The senior division had 17 (4x) state champions, 31 (3x) state champions, 81 (2x) state champions and 137 (1x) state champions. It was the best of the best going head to head.
“I went down there and I wanted to win it all,” Roman said. “I ran into some studs the first day and just got caught and had to wrestle back. I beat the third-place finisher of Florida in my first match, and then I had to wrestle the two-time state champ from South Dakota. He caught me in a head lock and spun me and pinned me at the beginning of the third period.”