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Lincoln Elementary School students and brothers, Joey and Sean Panas, have a lot to be proud of this year. The brothers are also part of a small group of athletes who participate in folk style wrestling.
Their stepdad introduced them to the sport as a way to give them something to focus on outside of school academics. After showing interest in the sport, the brothers joined the Port City Pirates Wrestling Club in Wilmington. Joey was 5 and Sean was 8 when they began training in the sport.
This was their second year of competition, and they have accomplished the following:
Joey Panas: He was first in multiple local tournaments at the Port City Pirates training facility. Second at the North Carolina AAU elementary school state championships (40 pounds). First at the Rhino Xtreme (40 pounds). Third at the N.C. AAU state championships (45 pounds). Finished with All-American status as he placed first in the AAU Spring Youth Nationals in Kingsport, Tenn. He beat state champions from Tennessee and Georgia. He also wrestled on the N.C. Dream Team, which competed against the best wrestlers in the country. The team placed first in the bronze division.
Sean Panas: He was second in the Rhino Xtreme (70 pounds). He was as an alternate for the N.C. Dream Team in the AAU team nationals.