Brock Thrash

Wellborn's Brock Thrash.

Brock Thrash has come a long way in his one year with Wellborn wrestling.

A year ago, at Ohatchee, Thrash was a training partner more than an opponent. Wellborn coach Todd Manning said he would have his wrestler who typically competed against Thrash wait to pin him, just to get more mat time and practice.

A year later, as an eighth-grader, Thrash is Wellborn’s lone wrestler to qualify for the state meet, which starts today in Huntsville. He finished fifth in the 145-pound class at last week’s 1A-5A South super sectional in Montgomery, getting through on an otherwise hard-luck day for Wellborn. The Panthers got seven to the blood round, and one DQ’d for vomiting with a 14-1 lead.

Thrash came off a first-round bye and pinned Shelby County’s Austin Dunn before falling to Elmore County’s Chayanne Sanchez in the quarterfinals. Thrash came away with a 24-14 record on the year and will carry the banner for a program that won four state championships between 2006-2010.

He’ll face Piedmont’s Christian Doss in Huntsville’s Von Braun Center today at 12:45 p.m. and see how far he can take his run.

Thrash also plays football and baseball for Wellborn, but his state-level breakthrough has come in his fifth year of wrestling. It came with an opportunity to chat with Star Sports Writer Joe Medley and field 10 questions:

Thrash greets attention that comes with sudden success with a quiet voice, a nervous leg and a look that says, well … you’ll see.

Question: What’s it like to be an eighth-grader and get interviewed?

Answer: I don’t know. I don’t know what to say.

Q: How did you get started in wrestling?

A: My dad started a program in Ohatchee. When I went to Ohatchee, my dad was like, “Do you want to start wrestling?” I was, like, “Yeah, but I don’t know any of the moves.” So, he got the wrestling program started down there.

Q: What was your goal coming into the season?

A: To make it to state. I got a good seed and won one match.

Q: What’s been the key to getting better at wrestling?

A: There’s not really one thing. You’ve just got to have a good coach. I go to camps and stuff, and we have a mat at the house.

Q: When you qualified for state, what was your reaction?

A: I teared up a little bit. I’ve been wrestling for five years, and that’s been my goal my whole life. I just have to go out there and wrestle.

Q: What’s the hardest test you’ve ever taken?

A: The (ACT) Aspire test. The reading part, mainly. It’s hard.

Q: If you could choose any topic for a research paper, what would you choose?

A: I would choose not to.

Q: If you could choose to live anywhere in the world where would you prefer to live?

A: Right here. This is where everybody is.

Q: You said Christmas is your favorite holiday. What’s the best present you’ve ever gotten?

A: The wrestling mat in my house. It’s big enough for my room.

Q: Who on your team is most likely to become famous one day?

A: Namath (Pitts), because he’s the most talkative.

Sports Writer Joe Medley: 256-235-3576. On Twitter: @jmedley_star.