Burger King Outstanding Student Athlete: South Bend Washington's Isaiah McWilliams
SOUTH BEND —
Tony McWilliams was a wrestling coach at South Bend LaSalle back in the early 2000’s.
And at every meet, you could be sure that his son Isaiah would be right by his side. Donning his singlet and his head gear, the then three year old Isaiah, desperately awaited his opportunity to jump on to the mat.
“He would always stand in the corner with me and he would always ask me when it was his turn.” Said Tony, “I would always tell him don’t worry your match is coming up next.”
Unfortunately for the zealous three-year old, his match never seemed to come.
“There wasn’t really anybody for me to wrestle because I was so young but it just always made me hungry to wrestle.” said Isaiah.
But it wasn’t long before Isaiah’s age caught up with his fervor.
“When he finally got his turn it was like Bam!” said Tony, “There he goes! He actually went undefeated for the first two years he wrestled as a junior. Nobody could touch him.”
Isaiah has been rising up the ranks ever since. In his sophomore season at South Bend Washington, Isaiah stunned many in the wrestling community by placing fourth in the 285 pound class at the IHSAA state finals.
“It was exciting because I was ranked 17th and nobody really expected me to go to state.” Said Isaiah.
Oh how expectations have changed. After his deep tourney run, Indianamat.com listed Isaiah as the top heavyweight in the state, making him the first in South Bend Washington program history to be ranked at number one.
“I was excited but I was also determined because I knew there is a huge target on my back.” Said Isaiah.
For his father who still remembers the little Isaiah that so desperately wanted to get in the game, it’s an immensely proud achievement.
“As a dad I was super proud of him.” Said Tony, “We've been putting in a lot of hours since he was three years old and its paying off, and we talked about it for a minute and just said now you have got to finish number one.”
A sentiment that Isaiah couldn’t agree with more.
“I want to win a state title, actually I want to win two state titles and hopefully that’s what I do.”