It’s hard to miss Enid High Schools 215-pound wrestler, Carlos Alvarado, and not just because of his size, but because of his trademark Cowboy hat and outgoing personality. “Carlos has always been outgoing, and sociable, but also very determined and coachable,” said his mom Dana Alvarado. “He didn’t even start wrestling until 7th grade when he called me and said “Mom, they put me in yearbook and I don’t want to do it, so I got on the wrestling bus!” And as they say, the rest is history.
Alvarado went on to win “kid’s state” as an eighth grader and the rest, as they say, is history. “Winning state as an 8th grader really encouraged him and he really fell in love with wrestling,” Dana said. “Once he figured out he couldn’t pin everyone and needed to actually try and score some points, it started clicking, and he started getting a lot better and got really excited about the sport.” Since then Carlos has finished as high as 3rd place at the 6A state high school tournament, and has won freestyle and Greco roman state championships during the offseason.
Enid High Wrestling Coach Trent Holland is proud of Carlos’ and his achievements. “Carlos is a tough kid, and works really hard, he wrestles with aggression and confidence” he said, “Wrestling freestyle in the summer has really helped him develop and being on Team Oklahoma has helped him improve his skills. Being around other really good kids and having some other coaches has been good for him. His technique has gotten better over the last few years, his top work and counter-offense has improved. I know he wants to win state this year, so he’s going to have to really wrestle, work hard on technique and counter offense to do it.”
Carlos qualified for the State tournament as a freshman, missed state as a sophomore, and took 3rd at state last year. Last month, Carlos won the Mid-America Nationals wrestling tournament here in Enid with 5 straight pins and then a real barn burner in the finals, winning 6-5. “Carlos winning Mid America is really good for our team. It shows the other kids what can be accomplished, and brings everyone’s level up. Being the first Enid wrestler to win also brings good publicity for our sport here in town,” said Coach Holland.
As for Carlos, he says that wrestling is his passion. “I’d like to wrestle as long as I can, and hopefully go to college and even afterwards make it a career for as long as I can. One of my biggest regrets is not starting earlier, but I am working really hard now. After I qualified for state as a freshman, I got spanked in the first round. I was stunned, but I knew I’d have to come back and work harder. The next year I wrestled up at 220 and was giving up a lot of weight and got tossed around at regionals and didn’t make the state tournament which sucked, I’m not going to lie. I had surgery, then went back to the drawing board after rehab and did a lot better my junior year. After losing early at state, to the same guy that knocked me out a couple years before, I wrestled back through the backside and beat him for 3rd place. While winning was always my goal, being able to battle back and get my revenge was really cool. This year, they changed the weights, so I am planning to stay up at 215 and try and use my Greco experience to stay in matches,” Carlos said. After winning the Mid America Nationals (MAN) tournament, he has his sites set on another championship – a state championship. “I really liked winning MAN,” Carlos said, “I’ve only been in the wrestling room for a few weeks, so am still getting back in wrestling shape from football (where he is the EHS career record holder for tackles-Editor), so 6 matches in two days is a lot. It’s our home tournament and I especially wanted for our youth program to see what is possible. I hope I can be a kid they look up to and see that they can work hard and success will come. There were days I wasn’t sure I wanted to keep on, because wrestling is HARD, but maybe a kid will see another Enid kid winning and stick with it.” Finally, Alvarado wanted to say this about Coach Holland and the Enid High Wrestling program, “Coach Holland is one of the greatest people I know and I really respect and look up to him. He pushes us to get better every day, and the team and I really need it.”
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