TOM was able to catch up with Chris Villalonga of Cornell. Villalonga was our #3 top prospect at 149 last year and looks to add to his list of accomplishments at Cornell. The Blair Academy alum will add depth and fire power to our Pre-season #1 Team.
Below is our 7 minutes with Chris.
TOM: To date what is your most memorable match and why?
CV: I would have to say it was wrestling for team USA at the Dapper Dan and receiving the OW award, it was a great way to end my high school wrestling career.
TOM: What brought you to Cornell?
CV: What brought me to Cornell was the fact that I felt it was the best combination of academics and wrestling; after my official visit I just felt like it was a perfect fit for me. Now that I am here I know I made the right decision
TOM: What are you most looking forward to this upcoming season?
CV: I am looking forward being a part of a team that is full of great teammates and outstanding coaches; and of course winning a team National Championship would be icing on the cake.
TOM: How have you improved from last season to this one? What helped that improvement?
CV: Training this summer at Cornell while taking summer classes has helped me get stronger and improve on the mat. Being competitive in college I believe requires a different mindset because of the length of the season and the quality of the competition so I try to improve a little everyday I train. I still have a long way to go but I have to take it one day at a time.
TOM: What is your favorite sport, besides wrestling?
CV: I started playing baseball at a very early age; and I am a pretty big fan of the sport today. Unfortunately I am a frustrated New York Mets fan at the moment.
TOM: As a recruit what were the main things you considered when picking a school?
CV: First and foremost it was choosing a school that would prepare me for life beyond wrestling. Being close to home and my family was also very important to me, as well as being part of a competitive team with great coaches and team chemistry.
TOM: What person has had the biggest impact on your wrestling career and why?
CV: The person who has had the biggest impact on my wrestling career is my high school coach Jeff Buxton. He’s done more for me than just turn me into a good wrestler; he goes beyond the skills and techniques. He taught me mental toughness, as well as how to deal with adversity.
He builds your character as he teaches you how to be a man and take responsibility for your decisions. Since Blair is a boarding school he is the father figure to the team, and there is nothing he wouldnâ€™t do for his wrestlers.