Zebras’ Cook among area’s top wrestlers

Junior ranks 30th in state
By: Jim Linsdau, Sports Editor
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Lincoln High’s Lucas Cook is not only big; he’s also a quick study.

Cook said he was not that good until he began wrestling as a member of the Fighting Zebras wrestling team. Although a growing boy, Cook said the mental aspect of wrestling was key to his success.

Last spring, Cook qualified for the USA National Freestyle Wrestling Championships held in Fargo, N.D. Having only known high school wrestling, he had to quickly learn freestyle, also known as folkstyle.

Since returning to the high school mats this season, the junior has risen rapidly through the ranks in the 285-pound heavyweight division.

He has won two invitational tournaments and placed eighth in the Pat Lovell Classic held in Aptos last week. He went 4-3 for fourth place and currently ranks 30th in the state for his weight class.

Cook has only three heavyweight wrestlers ranked ahead of him right now and could do well if he makes it to Masters. The three ranked ahead of him are all seniors, which bodes well for Cook’s future.

“I think my future’s bright; you just have to start seeing the right path,” Cook said last spring. “You have to work out hard every day; definitely the mentality.”

The Foothill Valley League has four wrestlers ranked in the state’s top 40, of which Cook is one. The other three are Jack Stone (113) and Sean Myles (182 ) of Oakmont, and Placer’s Joe Valdez (160).