NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. – Malcolm Allen walked off the wrestling mat following his loss in the second round of the Warren Williams/Daktronics Open at South Dakota State University angry with himself.
Allen, a freshman at Iowa Central Community College and New Rochelle High School graduate, felt he lost his concentration once he allowed a reversal to eventual champ Michael Kroells of Minnesota, and then fell behind in the 285-pound match.
Allen would quickly put the loss behind him, refocus on what he wanted to accomplish and closed out the day winning four matches to finish third in his first tournament of the season.
“My coach told me after my loss that I needed to stay focused and wrestle my match,” said Allen, the 2011 New York State Division I 285-pound champion. “I told myself that I had to do it and I was not going to lose again.”
Allen, who opened the day with a decision win, began his march to third place with a pin, at 2:30, of teammate Chevan Okonoboh. Following a win by injury default, Allen won in a decision over J.J. Everard of South Dakota State, 9-4 in a consolation semifinal. Allen gained an early lead and carried it into the third period. He extended it with a couple of take-downs.
Allen concluded his day with a 4-2 decision of top-seeded Donny Longendyke of Nebraska.. Allen led 1-0 after one and 2-0 through two as both points came on escapes. After Longendyke closed to 2-1 in the third, Allen secured a single-leg takedown to secure the win and finish 5-1 for the tournament.
“It was a good feeling because it was long, hard day and I had to push myself mentally and physically,” said Allen, who is majoring in physical education. “I just kept pushing the pace in my matches, kept myself in good position and wrestled my match.”
Allen said all of his pre-season preparation helped him persevere.
“The way the coaches push us in the room, they want us to push through matches when we are tired and always remember to stay in good position,” Allen said.