High school wrestling is not a tag-team sport, but Scott Sierzega of Brother Rice High School said he never felt alone on the mat.
Sierzega took second place last weekend in the 220-pound weight division of the Illinois High School Association’s state wrestling tournament. It was an unlikely achievement he would have undoubtedly shared with Jacob Schmitz.
“I was mad that I couldn’t bring it home for him,” Sierzega said of his runner-up finish in the 2A division. “But I know he’d be looking down and have a smile on his face about what I’ve done thus far.”
Schmitz died June 13 after developing a rare and aggressive form of leukemia. He was the only child of retired Chicago Police Lt. Ellyn Weiss Schmitz and former Deputy Chief Leo Schmitz, who is now director of the Illinois State Police.