GOOD, BETTER, BEST
Good, better, best. Never let it rest. ‘Til your good is better and your better is best. These are words that Junior Noah Davis has been living by the last four years.
Davis desires to get better each time he steps on the mat, whether it be at practice or in competition. According to Head Coach Eric Burrell, “Noah is a heck of a kid, very polite and well mannered. As a wrestler Noah is prototypical athlete that you would want for a wrestler. He is tough, strong, fast, and a student of the game. He is very devoted and wants to get better every time he steps on the mat. In the practice room, he is not the most vocal, but instead leads by example. He is always challenging the top kids in the room and scraps with them every time.”
One of those kids he enjoys scrapping with is his friend and drill partner Dalton Bell. Davis says “he basically made me into the wrestler I am today. Drilling with Dalton everyday has been anything but easy. I’ve gotten my butt kicked by him, and it’s helped me a lot because it has helped me learn new moves, change my style of wrestling, and also getting myself out of sticky situations. He has been a major influence for pushing me to the limits.”
Dalton Bell couldn’t ask for a better teammate and friend. “Noah has the right attitude of just constantly pushing himself and learning new ways to advance his wrestling knowledge and skill. He is one of the most respected wrestlers around the state, and it has been a great experience to help him and push him in practice.”
Davis has currently won over 140 matches in his 4 year career so far. He is 40-2 this season and is currently ranked 3rd in the state in the 138 pound weight class. Davis humbly gives credit to his coaching staff for making him into the wrestler he is today. “My coaches have certainly been a major influence on me over the last four years, and I cannot thank them enough for that,” says Davis.
Davis says, “Coach Burrell has helped in many ways, the first way is he’s pushing me into trying a lot of different wrestling styles and helps me adapt to the change. He has molded me into the wrestler I am today by implementing an aggressive style so I can score more. He also depends on me to win my weight class and to help the team score in a tournament.”
Davis attributes a lot of his success to Assistant Coach Elijah Zwiep. “Coach Zwiep influences me more mentally than anybody because after tournaments we’ll both sit down in his classroom and we’ll end up going over film from the previous tournament and he’ll point out the mistakes I made and or a series that could’ve worked at the time and I can truly say that has, and will continue to help me for as long as we do it. He helps me keep my eyes on the prize, there are times when I’ll be a little over confident in myself, but he makes sure I know to never under estimate someone and to treat every match like it’s a match at the state tournament.”
Zwiep is quick to praise Davis for the sacrifice and effort he has demonstrated over the years. “Noah is very coachable, willing to take criticism, and works his butt off on the mat, in the classroom, and is really developing into a leader on the team. He is always seeking ways to be better.”
Assistant Coach Brad Walters has also had a big impact on Davis. “Coach Brad influences me more physically in the practice room more than anybody I think because he’ll challenge me and isn’t afraid to say I’m not working hard enough even if it’s in the weight room, class room, or practice room. I believe that has helped me a lot because if he wasn’t pushing me like he has then no one would be pushing me like this and I wouldn’t be at this caliber; I wouldn’t be beating the guys I am today.”
Perhaps the biggest influence on Davis has been the coach that influenced him from the beginning in Coach Jack LaRue. “He has made a big impact on my life because he helped me get my life on track. Before I met coach LaRue I was making bad grades and was overweight. He held study hall every Friday to help all of us improve our grades and made sure we were scholars before we were athletes. He also helped me with my weight by pushing me beyond my ability and he pushed me harder than I’ve ever been pushed before, and there were times when I didn’t want to wrestle anymore but I know it was for a good cause, that it’d pay off in the long run, and was doing it to make a better wrestler. After matches I’ll always come up to him and see what he saw wrong and what needs to be done to fix, and I do that because I trust his opinion due to the fact he was a very successful wrestler himself.”
“Noah is a great kid that just needed something to aim for,” says Coach Jack LaRue. “Wrestling has provided the motivation in the classroom and on the mat.”
Noah Davis will refuse to rest when his good is better and his better is best. Look for this young man to continue to be successful in high school and whatever he chooses to do in life.