Nowak feels good being back out on mat for Wildcats
But after some injury issues earlier in the season, the Depew High School senior is back on the mat. Now he’s looking to take advantage of that and do some damage on the postseason.
“It was really tough for me sitting out, just watching my teammates at meets and just sitting there at practice,” he said after pinning his opponent in a recent dual meet against Sweet Home. “I was helping the coaches out, but that made me want to step out on the mat even more, but I couldn’t because I was out.”
After a successful junior season, Nowak was expected to be one of the leaders of the young Wildcats’ squad this season as a senior.
However, he missed two weeks with a broken nose and two more weeks with a heart issue.
But these days, Nowak’s not only back, but he’s back and wrestling well for the Wildcats.
He placed fifth at the ECIC Championships at 106 pounds and has also won three in a row in dual meet competition.
“Being out and then coming back, I’m happy with the way I’ve been doing,” Nowak said. “I’m happy to be back and have a winning record.”
He’s had postseason success before, placing at the Section VI Class B tournament as a junior. If he wrestles well, even more could be in store as a senior.
“Chadd’s definitely right up there,” Depew head coach Jim Szefler said. “He’s progressed and gotten better. If Chadd brings his ‘A’ game, I think he can do well.”
That’s exactly what Nowak is expecting — to do well. There will be a lot of good wrestlers in the 106-pound class at the Section VI tournament — and of course at the state tournament. But Nowak is ready to compete with the best of them.
He got started in strong fashion, claiming the championship at the Section VI Class B Tournament on Feb. 2 at East Aurora High School.
It was a nice feat, but he’s looking for even more.
“I’m expecting to get to states this season, and if I can’t do that I at least think I can place high at sectionals,” he said.
Those may be high aspirations, but Nowak has shown he’s not going to give up no matter the challenge.
And win or lose, he’s glad to be back out on the mat.
“I’m happy to be back with my team, back with my family,” Nowak said.