FORT WASHINGTON — Unlike normal wrestling tournaments or dual-meets which are housed in gyms, Prep Nationals is held within a large arena. The bright lights are turned on and fans fill the stands, either rooting for or against the athletes on the mat. That type of attention could get into the head of anyone in the competition, but not Brandon Seidman ’18.
Seidman is a Prep Nationals veteran. Most recently, he capped off his senior season by capturing fifth place at 120 pounds.
“He can pretty much go with the best high school wrestlers in the country,” Head Coach Solomon Fleckman said. “Everybody who wrestles him has to respect him and has to be careful and it’s just a matter of time before he breaks through. He’s right there with the best high school guys.”
By looking at Seidman’s career at Prep Nationals, one would have to agree with Fleckman. His fifth place performance this year marked the third time that the senior placed at nationals. In 2016, Seidman placed seventh at 106 and in 2017 he took eighth at 113.
With those three wins, Seidman joins some elite company at Germantown Academy. He becomes just the tenth wrestler in the school’s history to be a three-time placewinner and the first since Keith Corliss ’12.
“As my weight increased, I would say that the physical aspects were more challenging,” Seidman said. “My opponents were more mature, stronger, faster. It’s a nice little career to have.”
While Seidman downplayed his accomplishment, his coach did not.
“This tournament is a totally different animal than it was 20, 30 years ago,” Fleckman said. “This tournament is one of the hardest high school end-of-season tournaments it the country.”
It is through Seidman’s talent and the coaching he has received that he was able to accomplish these feats. However, it was not just Fleckman who helped with that aspect.
In a span of three years, Seidman had three different coaches. There was Steve Hill during Seidman’s sophomore campaign, Zach Doll as a junior and now Fleckman. Despite the different styles that they may have, Seidman could draw a few similarities between them.
“One thing that they have in common is intensity,” Seidman said. “The first two coaches were already affiliated with the GA program and then Coach Fleckman was completely new to me. They’ve all been great coaches and they’ve supported me throughout my career.”
That career will continue at the collegiate level. Seidman said he will be wrestling Bucknell University. While he will no longer be donning a singlet for the Patriots, he will carry certain memories with him.
“The brotherhood that our team has,” Seidman said. “When we’re at tournaments I notice that everybody is supporting one another whereas other schools don’t do that too often Everybody is pretty close and that’s special to me.”