By Patrick Dillon @PDillon_SGN
EXETER – There are few names which are synonymous with Monarch athletics. When the names are mentioned, it is usually in the same sentence as winning. The name Boland is probably the most recognized name in Exeter wrestling, and it does not look to be going anywhere soon. Earlier this month, Cord Boland became the fourth in the family line to win a league title.
“To have my name on the wrestling wall as a league champion along with my family means a lot to me,” Boland said.
The family sport of wrestling is something which is discussed at every holiday. Many times Boland was compared to his older brother, Dawson Boland, who had success in the sport. This year being his last chance Boland knew time was not on his side.
Boland took competition for Central Sequoia League supremacy one wrestler at a time in the heavyweight bracket until he was in the finals. Waiting for him was Selma’s Xavier Moran who, at the time, was 10th ranked in the state, and a former state tournament qualifier.
The two wrestlers had met before, most recently in Exeter’s last regular season home match. Moran got the better of Boland by a score of 6-0. This match Boland knew he had to go for broke.
“I was suppose to lose that match, and it did not matter how I did losing was still losing,” Boland said.
It took sudden death overtime to decide the outcome. Tied at 2-2 Moran chose to be down on the restart. If he escaped Boland’s advantage it would have awarded him one point and the win. However, Boland held his advantage for 30 seconds giving him the win and the title he had sought after.
“That title meant the most to me,” Boland said.
Boland did not stop at the league championship. Instead he continued on to win a CIF Valley Championship one week later. He faced Moran again in the semifinals. Boland proved to everyone that the league title was not a one-time fluke as he defeated Moran again in overtime. In the finals, Boland got the title with a pin. His valley title is only the third of the family behind his brother and grandfather, Danny Boland.
A fifth place finish at Masters set Boland up with a favorable draw at the State Championship Tournament this past weekend, March 3-4. In his first match, he defeated Tony Dacosta from Torrance High School. He followed it up with two straight losses which sent him home.
While this generation of Boland wrestlers might be over, the legacy could live on in the future. Boland stated that he hopes to return to Exeter and raise up his kids in the same program that taught him.