During his freshman year, star Mike Beard was a huge part of the team’s Inter- Ac championship run, their first one in over a decade, and was named “Wrestler of the Year” in the process. We interviewed him about his thoughts on Malvern and the Wrestling team.
Where did you go to school before attending Malvern?
I attended Daniel Boone Elementary. I left there in seventh grade to come to Malvern. I’ve been here since then.
How has your freshman year been so far?
It’s going great. I accomplished more than what my goals were. I need to stay focused on my grades during the second semester and it will be an overall great year for me.
I know that the team accomplished many things this year, but which one stands out the most for you?
The accomplishment that stands out for me the most is definitely winning the Inter- Ac Championship due to the fact that our team had not won it since 1995. To finally win one for Malvern after all those winless years was really amazing to me.
You were named “Wrestler of the Year”. That is very impressive. What do you attribute your success to?
Practice. I took a lot of time always trying to work harder in the practice room and focusing on my technique as much as possible so I have confidence when I am in an actual match.
How did the coaches prepare you to succeed this year?
The coaches pushed me throughout the whole year because they knew what I was capable of doing. They helped me with my offense in my matches so I can keep scoring on my opponent.
What has been the highlight for you this year?
The highlights for my year were all the big tournaments I have excelled in. But, most importantly, I really enjoyed contributing to winning the Inter-Ac title with my teammates.
What is your routine before each match?
My routine before my matches are always to get a physical warm up by drilling with a practice partner or by sprinting to get my heart rate up. After that, I settle down a little to focus on what I need to do in my match.
When you are on the mat, during a match, what is your strategy?
My main strategy is always staying on offense no matter what is going on in the match. I always need to stay aggressive and look to score.
Both your head coach (Nate Lautar) and assistant coach (Nate Wachter) have gotten praise for their work this year- what specific things do they do that makes them so special?
The Malvern coaches are so special because they are so flexible with their time. They always give their time to help the wrestler. Instead of being somewhere else and having fun, they are dedicating their time to make their wrestlers better.
Being a freshman can be scary sometimes; how have the older wrestlers on the team make you feel more comfortable?
I knew the upperclassmen since I was very young because I wrestled with them on the Malvern Club team. They are always nice and they always treat me with respect, and I act the same way to them.
Lastly, what does Malvern mean to you?
Malvern means a whole lot to me because I know it’s my whole future. Malvern will help me succeed in life due to the people around me pushing me to always to be the best person I can possibly be; both in the classroom and out.