Two-time champ

Two-time champ

One was fun, but Jesse Delgado wasn't done.

A junior member of the wrestling team at the University of Illinois, Delgado became a big part of Fighting Illini sports lore over the weekend when he won his second straight NCAA championship.

Wrapping up the season with a 30-2 record and a 16-match winning streak, Delgado narrowly defeated Cornell University's Nahshon Garrett in the 125-pound weight class.

Delgado's championship made him the first Illini in 56 years to capture back-to-back national championships. His fans already are speculating about Delgado's chances of capturing a third straight championship next year.

Whoa. Slow down. Let's let this determined young man enjoy the fruits of his monumental labor before weighing him down with expectations for next year.

Winning a championship in any sport requires hard work, discipline, mental and physical toughness — not to mention a touch of luck. But that's especially so in wrestling, where the mano a mano rigors require one competitor to best another all by himself.

So congratulations to Delgado for an astounding athletic accomplishment that ranks among the finest in UI sports history. And good luck next year.

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