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Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake wrestling community mourns one of its own

Bennett remembered for his intensity on the mat and fun-loving nature off of it

Doug Bennett gets his opponent in a head lock during a 2009-10 wrestling match for Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake.

Doug Bennett gets his opponent in a head lock during a 2009-10 wrestling match for Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake. Photo by Don Catharine

— “I was so worried when we moved here with the kids not knowing anybody at school,” said Bennett. “Wrestling helped out so much with the kids getting accepted quickly into the school. It’s really helped the bond, I guess.”

Bennett’s only training in the sport came from his five years of taking Brazilian ju-jitsu classes in Idaho, but it helped him become one of BH-BL’s more successful wrestlers. He won the majority of his matches during his four-year career with the Spartans.

“He had a very good cradle and head lock,” said Jones. “Those were his two best moves, and he caught a lot of kids in those moves.”

“It was never dull. It was always exciting to watch him,” said Bennett.

Bennett’s wrestling career inspired his younger brother, Sam, to take up the sport. Sam completed his freshman season with the BH-BL junior varsity team, and Douglas Bennett said Sam has hopes of joining the varsity team.

“Hopefully, he’ll keep doing it,” said Bennett. “He wants to do it because Doug did it.”

It’s that connection to the BH-BL wrestling community that is helping the Bennett family get through the loss of their son.

“I just want to thank the coaches and all the wrestling team members in making Doug the man he was and he became,” said Bennett. “I believe they were a big influence on him, and for my other kids, too.”

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