Received word that a local high school wrestler won a national title over the weekend. Upon seeing his last name, Ramos, I wondered if he was related to recent Hillcrest High School graduate and multiple state medalist Derek Ramos. Turns out Kaden is Derek’s younger brother.
Ramos wins title at USA Wrestling nationals
By MARLOWE HEREFORD
An incoming Thunder Ridge High School sophomore made an impression at his first USA Wrestling National Championships in Fargo, North Dakota, over the weekend.
Kaden Ramos went 4-0 to win the 88-pound Cadet Greco-Roman national title, winning every match by pin or by technical fall. This was the first USA Wrestling nationals appearance for Ramos, who qualified by placing third in 98 pounds at Idaho’s 5A state wrestling championships in February in Pocatello. He is the younger brother of Derek Ramos, this year’s 5A state runner-up at 126 pounds who graduated from Hillcrest this spring. Kaden was a freshman at Hillcrest this past school year.
His coach, Jacob Eck, has been working with him for the last four years. Three years ago, Kaden and Eck watched from the stands as Derek reached the finals for his weight class in Fargo and took second. What Kaden told Eck then proved prophetic.
“He looked me right in the eye after his brother lost and said, ‘The first time I come here, I’m gonna win,'” Eck said Tuesday by phone.
Upon fulfilling his prediction last week, Eck said Ramos told him “I told you so.” The two embraced and some tears fell.
“I’m supposed to be the tough wrestling coach and not show emotion, but it is by far right now my most exciting moment as a coach and a fan of that kid,” Eck said. “I’m still on cloud nine. It’s a true testament to that kid. He believes in himself.”
Prior to winning the 88-pound Cadet Greco-Roman national title, Ramos competed in the freestyle national championships in Fargo and placed eighth in his weight class. He had one day before his first Greco-Roman match, and he had to work his way back from a rough start.
“His first match of Greco, he was losing 8-0,” Eck said. “He came all the way back and ended up pinning the kid. He got his confidence back.”
Last weekend’s victory was forged by four years of logging several thousands of miles with Eck to compete in various tournaments. Eck said they traveled as away as Wisconsin, Oklahoma and California and Ramos was home-schooled for a few years to allow for more flexibility to travel. Ramos trains with Eck at Rigby High School, where Eck is entering his second year as head coach. Eck said Ramos will take two weeks off before resuming training.