HERSHEY It wasn't the way Pleasant Valley senior Michael Dahlstrom wanted to finish his high school wrestling career.
Following a 3-2 loss to Franklin Regional's Josh Maruca in the fifth place 126-pound consolation round Saturday night at the PIAA AAA wrestling championships, Dahlstrom had to settle with a defeat and a sixth place medal from Hershey.
The anguish from the result was prevalent on Dahlstrom's face, but if there's one thing every wrestler needs to remember, it's that the sun comes up tomorrow.
Dahlstrom was the lone Bear to leave Hershey with a medal, a piece of hardware that has eluded him his entire career up to this point.
"Right now it's a tough feeling to have since you've worked so hard for so many years to get to this point," Dahlstrom said. "It's really tough to get a medal from here and I'm happy I did. It's just tough knowing it's over."
Maruca proved to be a thorn in Dahlstrom's side during the course of the tournament, as the freshman defeated the PV senior 3-0 in the quarterfinals as well.
"It was definitely a style clash," Dahlstrom said of why he had so much difficulty with Maruca. "He wrestled smart against me. Every time I went for one of my main moves, he knew what I was going to do. They definitely out-smarted me."
Head coach Mark Getz knows Dahlstrom was disappointed with the result, but doesn't want his departing senior to walk away with his head down.
"The kid got a state medal and that's nothing to be upset about," Getz said. "I'm sure he's upset with the way it ended, but his goal was to come out here and place for the first time and he did that."
Now, Dahlstrom will focus his wrestling prowess towards college, where he's made a verbal commitment to attend Virginia Military Institute.
It's the next chapter of his wrestling career, one that his head coach knows will be remembered from Pleasant Valley standards.
"We have a big sign in our wrestling room that has all the names of our state place-winners and it's something that all the kids look up to," Getz said. "It's also great for Mike to come back one day and see that as well."