Getting to know Dalton Lakmann of Palo Cedro’s Foothill High School (NS)

Dalton Lakmann is a junior who advanced last season to the CIF state tournament at 126s. He is a defending Northern Section champion and is ranked 11th in the state by TCW. This season, he garnered All-American status at the rugged Reno TOC tournament.

TCW – Who is responsible for introducing you to the sport of wrestling?

Lakmann – My father is responsible for introducing me to the sport of wrestling.

TCW – Last year you won the Northern Section and advance to the CIF state tournament where you went 2-2. Can you tell us a bit about your experience in the state tournament?

Lakmann – Going to state last year was an eye-opening experience for how high of a level I must compete at to make the podium. It truly showed me what I needed to become more proficient at.

TCW – What would you say to those that have a pessimistic view about the Northern Section not being strong as the rest of the CIF’s?

Lakmann – The Northern Section is a bit weaker because of the population of kids. Also, one of our towns is split up into three high schools, and schools like Clovis, Buchanan, Poway, and Gilroy are bigger than some of our high schools combined. To be good in the North Section and be competitive, one must travel to tougher events. Most of the North Section teams aren’t willing to do that, therefore it’s not a strong section like the Central, Sac-Joaquin, and the Southern Section.

TCW – What do you and your teammates need to work on to win the Northern Section tournament this year?

Lakmann – One of my teammates was overweight before day two of the Joe Rios Memorial and wasn’t allowed to weigh-in as he was late. We took a hit in team points which caused a loss to Chico. I believe we need to have discipline and everyone needs to be at the right weights and perform at their best to win our section tournament.

TCW – You recently won the Joe Rios Memorial tournament where you defeated a strong state contender in Lawrence Saenz of Vacaville, 8-4. Do you believe you have put yourself in a good position to place in the state tournament or even winning it?

Lakmann – Beating Lawrence really boosts my confidence in my wrestling. It proved that I can contend with the top kids in California. I would say it has increased my chances at succeeding in the postseason.

TCW – How do you picture yourself performing this weekend at the Five Counties tournament?

Lakmann – I picture myself placing higher than last year for sure. Last year I placed eighth. I would love to make it to the top of the podium this week.

TCW – How are you trying to improve?

Lakmann – I need to work on being more confident on my feet and holding people down on top. I also need a bigger gas tank for the tough matches.

TCW – You’ve still got another year in high school, but have you thought about where you want to go to college?

Lakmann – Two wrestlers that graduated a couple years back went to South Dakota State. They want me to go train with them during the summer at the college. If I were to get an offer from them it would be intriguing to me. Otherwise, I’ll be deciding on whoever gives the best offer.

TCW – What were your goals coming into this season?

Lakmann – My goals coming into the season were to place higher at every tournament I go to than I did last year, and obviously to place at state, and maybe go to nationals.

TCW – Who do you think is your main competition this year in the Northern Section?

Lakmann – My main competition this year should come from Hunter Gonzales of Durham, Zack Hancock of Sutter, and Brandon Marsh of Red Bluff.

TCW – Who are the people you would like to thank for helping you become the young man that you are?

Lakmann – My parents for always being there for me. My teammates and coaches for helping me become a better wrestler. And Carolyn Wester at Wrestling Prep for helping me with my technique when I attend her wrestling camps.