pritchem reacted to Y2CJ41 for a article, #WrestlingWednesday: Farrell prepping for and trip to Bankers Life
By JEREMY HINES
Last year, when J.D. Farrell was a junior at Fishers High School, he saw that a German foreign exchange student was struggling understanding her math assignments and he knew he had to help her.
“She was struggling with translating her math work and I helped her,” Farrell said. “She didn’t have many friends and I wanted to be there for her to help with that as well.”
That’s what Farrell does. He helps others. He helps his teammates in wrestling understand how to do certain moves. He helps them know what it takes to be successful on the mat.
He also takes a certified nursing assistant (CNA) class and frequently goes to nursing homes to help the elderly. One day he plans to go into the medical field.
“I see people that maybe are struggling, or are less fortunate, and I want to help them any way I can,” Farrell said. “In the wrestling room I don’t just want to improve myself, I want to make everyone better. Outside of wrestling I see others struggle and I feel I’m called to help them. My heart pulls me toward them. God put those people in my life for a reason.”
As nice, polite and helpful as Farrell is off the mat – don’t expect mercy from him on it. He is currently 29-1 this season and ranked No. 4 at 195 pounds. His lone loss came at the hands of returning state champion Silas Allred. Last season he qualified for the state tourney but lost a hard-fought match in the opening session and didn’t place.
“I use my length to my advantage,” Farrell said. “I’m very offensive with my attacks. I look at my opponent’s attacks and plan to not give up anything to them. My goal is to not give anything to my opponent or ever let the ref decide the outcome of a close match.”
Allred, the No. 1 ranked wrestler in the class, feeds through the same New Castle semistate as Farrell. Before the season Farrell had the choice of going up a weight to avoid Silas, but that’s not what he wanted to do.
“I see Silas as an opportunity,” Farrell said. “If I see him in semistate, I wouldn’t have to face him early in the state tournament. He is very technical and a great wrestler. When I wrestled him earlier this season, I was not satisfied with how I did. I got to know him pretty well at CIA and he’s a great guy.”
Farrell is a third-generation wrestler. His grandfather wrestled and loved the sport. His dad, Brent finished second in the state during his high school career and his uncle, Brad, was a fifth-place finisher.
“Wrestling is in my family,” Farrell said. “My grandpa liked wrestling a lot and then my uncle and dad started and they saw a lot of success. My brother, Crew Farrell, is in middle school and he’s kicking butt right now.”
Fishers’ coach Frank Ingalls sees Farrell wrestling under the lights in the state finals.
“I’m expecting him to make it to the championship match,” Ingalls said. “He’s 29-1 right now with something like 22 falls. When we need him to bump up to 220, he still gets the job done and usually gets us six point.
“J.D. is a good Christian kid. He’s good in school. He’s a good leader. He does everything you ask him to do and he works hard in the offseason as well.”
During the offseason Farrell wrestled in many big tournaments, but he didn’t go to the Super 32. Instead, he hopped on a plane and traveled to Germany. As it turns out, Farrell finally got the nerve to ask that girl who was struggling with her math homework to be his girlfriend. He asked her toward the end of her stay in America, and she said yes.
“The long-distance relationship is tough,” Farrell said. “But I was glad I missed the Super 32 to go see her. It gave me the break I needed in wrestling, because I had been pushing so hard. When I came back I was ready to get back at it.”
Now, like so many other high school athletes, Farrell has his goal set at making it to the state finals.
“I have gone to the finals with my dad for as long as I can remember, and now I want to close my high school career out by wrestling there myself,” he said.
pritchem reacted to Y2CJ41 for a article, #WrestlingWednesday: Chundi excels on the mat and in the classroom
By JEREMY HINES
Carmel senior Suhas Chundi isn’t one to brag about his accomplishments – and there is plenty to brag about. His GPA is astronomical. His SAT score was close to perfection. He doesn’t want either of those actual numbers published because it’s just not something he thinks needs attention.
Chundi isn’t just gifted in the classroom though – he’s also a superb wrestler with state championship aspirations.
Last season Chundi placed fourth at 106 pounds. He enters the 2019-2020 campaign as the No. 2 ranked 113 pounder in the state – but has already made weight at 106.
Chundi’s success in academics, and in wrestling comes from his work ethic.
“Academics and wrestling are a lot alike,” Chundi said. “I was born with a little bit of natural intelligence, but I’m not any Rain Man genius or anything. I had to put in the dedication, figure out what to do and follow the plan. It helped me be successful.
“Wrestling is the same way. I don’t have a lot of natural talent, but I listen to my coaches, try to learn what they are telling me and follow their plan.”
On the academic side Chundi spent the summer preparing for the Biology Olympiad. Out of over 2,000 applicants, the top 20 are chosen to go to the Biology camp. In that camp there are days of learning, doing labs and taking tests. At the end there is over nine hours of testing and the top four students get selected to represent the United States in the Biology Olympiad. Chundi was one of those top four and went on to place 25th in the world at the event in Hungary.
“I think saying he’s insanely smart is an understatement,” Carmel wrestling coach Ed Pendoski said. “I’ve coached guys that have went to Northwestern, Cornell and the Navy Academy. But Chundi is on a different level. He’s applied to Harvard, Cornell, Stanford and a school that’s part of Northwestern that you have to apply to just to see if you can get the admissions application.
“I asked the head of our science department if the Biology Olympiad was a big deal. He said it is ‘out of your mind big,’ and said that it will set his plate forever.”
Pendoski had one bit of advice for Chundi as he left for the Biology competition.
“I told him if the guy from Poland finishes higher than him, don’t bother coming home,” the coach said jokingly.
Last season Chundi had 15 losses but come tournament time he was clicking on all cylinders. He won sectional and regional, got runner-up in the New Castle semistate and eventually placed fourth in state at 106 pounds.
“I want to be a state champion this year,” Chundi said. “But I also want to share the podium with most of my teammates. I want Carmel to become a wrestling school this year.”
Chundi is one of the team leaders for the Greyhounds – which is unusual for a guy competing in the smallest weight class.
Chundi is 5-2, 106 pounds but Pendoski said the team listens to him.
“He’s a lot of fun to be around,” Pendoski said. “He has a huge personality inside of the wrestling room. He really does a good job of leading by example.”
This season Chundi will be one of the rare seniors at 106, which Pendoski hopes will help him have a strength and maturity advantage over the field.
“He’s a late bloomer,” Pendoski said. “He’s really trying to elevate his game this year.”
Chundi’s parents moved to the United States from India two years before he was born. He visits India frequently and really enjoys the trips.
“Things are more rugged in India,” Chundi said. “It’s fun getting a taste of that culture and being able to visit family.”
The Carmel senior has proven he can succeed on the mat, or in the classroom. He’s also an outstanding teammate, according to Pendoski.
“I really can’t think of a better example of an ultimate teammate,” Pendoski said. “From helping give a guy a ride, to community service, to cutting weight – he does it all. When his career ends in February, Suhas Chundi will be on to bigger and better things and will excel at whatever he does.”