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DEBOLD STEPS ASIDE FROM FD WRESTLING

Coaching career spans over 40 years

By Patrick Lujan

After teaching the rigorous sport of wrestling spanning over four decades, Terry Debold has stepped down as the head coach of the Father Duenas wrestling team.

A career that began in 1982 coaching the GW Geckos, Debold folds an impressive resume that culminated in an 8th straight championship with the Friars just last week.

The nature and grind of wrestling had taken its toll on the now 62-year-old. He said he made the announcement to the school, athletes and parents before the season that this will be his last.

“I knew it already. I clearly wasn’t providing the physical part with the kids, getting on the mat and demonstrating the moves, wrestling with the kids. My age showed. I just wanted a smooth transition.”

With a multitude of championships and the building of a dynasty, Debold’s true reward is not the trophies but the development and success of his athletes outside of wrestling.

“It’s not about wrestling, it’s about developing the kids. Wrestling has been a way to share something common with students with a bigger ambition of seeing these students with bigger opportunities. Not only encouraging and guiding them, but walking along with them in their journey (to college).”

Coach Terry Debold speaks to athletes and supporters during a retirement ceremony at the FD chapel. (courtesy photo)

Building a Program

Asked what is the secret ingredient to success and Debold shares that there really is no secret.

“You have to build a sustainable program. This is for all the other sports at FD. You don’t build a team, you build a program, and you’ll see the success of it,” said Debold, who will continue his duties as the FD Athletic Director.

“We are wrestling as a program. It’s about every single individual, not just about the star players. I’ve had kids with zero abilities as a freshman, never winning a single match, and then they stay with it and win their first match their junior year. Seeing the perseverance and discipline, despite losing every match, and then they win their first match, that’s the highlight of the year, it’s not the trophy. That changes a student’s life. That’s what you call ‘ground up’.”

“Wrestling is always about resilience. You just keep going.”

Debold mentions that background administrative support is part of the equation to success, saying that Principal Temo Perez has been the biggest advocate to all of FD’s teams.

“He attends all the sports events. How many principals do you see at all the sports games, even working the games at the scorer’s table or running the video at football games, even jumping in for the national anthem and Guam hymn, when needed.”

Passing the Torch

Part of the sustainable approach is the transition from one leader to another. Debold relinquishes the wheel to Pavin Blas, a 2014 graduate who wrestled all four years at FD and in college.

“The program is in good hands,” Debold said confidently.

Notes: Debold also coached at JFK, Inarajan High, St. Paul and Sanchez. He won five titles at JFK and at St. Paul, he said, “We actual did pretty good, considering we had all the basketball players wrestling”. He also has coached little league baseball and is considered one of the island’s godfathers in the sport of bodybuilding.

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QUICK HITS

Shawn Bamba won the Arizona state wrestling championship while siblings Jussiah and Justyn took third place in their divisions at state.
Shawn (12th) won the 150-lb division while Jussiah (11th) took bronze in the 120-lb class and Justyn (9th) took bronze in the 106-lb category.
All three were born on Guam before moving to Surprise, Arizona in 2014, where they all picked up wrestling in 2016.
Their parents are Justin and Shannon Bamba from Pago Bay.
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Christian Delos Santos, son of Richard Delos Santos (Barrigada) and Norma Larimer Delos Santos (Dededo), won the Kentucky High School Athletic Association wrestling state championship in the 113-lb weight class.
His sister Naiya took 3rd place in the 100-lb girls division.

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