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For their own good
Fifty years ago, they were screwed-up kids sent to the Florida School for Boys to be straightened out. But now they are screwed-up men, scarred by the whippings they endured. Read the story and see a video and portrait gallery.
Demetrius Madry doesn't expect an easy path to more district success
By DOUG KATES Times Correspondent
Published February 1, 2007
ST. PETERSBURG - Bad news for the 112-pound weight class at districts Saturday: Demetrius Madry knows how it feels to lose.
At the Pinellas County Athletic Conference tournament last month, Madry took a 21-0 record into the 119-pound championship, then lost 8-6 to Countryside's Jordan Frease.
Madry, a St. Petersburg junior, could have tossed his head gear, thrown a fit and left the gym, argued with officials or felt sorry for himself.
But he did none of those.
He collected himself, congratulated Frease and walked off the mat with respect. And, according to his father Mike, a Green Devils assistant coach, Madry had already made a list of the things he did wrong before the handshake with Frease: wrist control, defensive stance and lack of attacks to name a few.
"You not only have to win like a champion, you have to lose like a champion," said Mike Madry, a former high school and college wrestler. "At first I was very concerned about his reaction, but then I was very proud of the way he lost."
"I have a lot more work to do," Demetrius said this week. "I figured I could beat everybody, but it didn't work out. I'm glad I lost. It made me look back and focus. You have to look at your opponents as all being good, so you have to wrestle good at their level."
Madry will arrive at districts with a 27-1 record and a 91-16 record overall. Most of his matches this season have been at 119, but for districts he will drop down to 112.
"He's put himself through a hard challenge on purpose," Mike Madry said. "He's going to be a beast at 112."
Over his three years of wrestling, the only tournaments Demetrius has not won are at the region and state levels. He was 1-2 in Lakeland last season and his goal this time is to place in the top six. He thinks the loss to Frease will help him reach his objective.
Fans will find out Saturday at East Lake if the Green Devil is on track.
"I think I'm ready," Demetrius said. "It's going to be different. It's not going to be easy."