He wasn’t even born when the record was last broken.
On the wrestling mat at Senior Night 2019, two Spartan legends shook hands as Jon Ott ’01 graciously passed on the title of Career Wins Record Holder to senior Cory Peterson. Jon’s 18-year-old record of 148 career wins at De Smet Jesuit was broken with Cory’s win over St. Charles on January 8, 2019. The win tally continued to climb the next evening at Senior Night when Cory maxed out on points over Kirkwood with minutes to spare.
Alumni and fans who watched Jon on the mats in the late ’90s and in the 2000-2001 season remember his tenacity and strength. “Jon was as dedicated a wrestler as De Smet ever put on the mat,” said his Coach Mike O’Brien. “He was dedicated not just to his own success, but to the success of all of his teammates. I see a lot of this in Cory.”
Current crowds can feel the heightened energy that Cory brings as soon as the dual starts. “He’s an exceptional wrestler,” said Coach Cox. “We are definitely going to miss what he brings to the team in the years to come.” Cory’s success in high school wrestling includes three state medals, a first-place finish at Pre-Season Nationals in 2017, a fifth-place finish at 2018 NHSCA National Championship in the Junior division, and numerous in-state tournament titles, including winning the recent Bobby Christman Memorial Holiday tournament. More than just his wins, however, Cory sets a great example of strong leadership and good sportsmanship for his teammates and fellow students.
Cory plans to wrestle at McKendree University next fall where he’s considering studying computer science. But first, he looks forward to finishing out the wrestling season strong, preparing for graduation…and turning 18.