04/17/18 — Rosewood wrestling coach to retire this year, championship team honored by state officials

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Rosewood wrestling coach to retire this year, championship team honored by state officials

By Joey Pitchford
Published in News on April 17, 2018 5:50 AM

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Wrestling coach Bill Edmundson accepts a North Carolina state flag from Rep. John Bell Monday morning at Rosewood High School.

The Rosewood High wrestling team had a stellar end to its 2018 season.

North Carolina General Assembly House majority leader John Bell and State Superintendent Mark Johnson visited the Eagles Monday to congratulate them and to present them with a few gifts to commemorate their second dual-team state championship win in February.

The presentation in the school's media center began with a performance from the Rosewood Eagle Ensemble chorus, after which Bell took the podium to address the wrestlers.

"Today, we just wanted to stop by and recognize the accomplishments that you've made," he said. "It's one thing to go and win a few matches, it's one thing to make the playoffs, but when you're labeled champions it's really something to be proud of."

Johnson spoke next. He encouraged the wrestlers to apply the same work ethic which took them to the championship to whatever path they decided to take after high school.

"If you put in even half the effort that it took you to get to this level in wrestling into your school work and what you do after school, you're going to be successful. And when I say successful, it doesn't mean you have to go a four-year college," he said. "It can be in the military, it can be in any kind of post-secondary training opportunity that you decide."

Johnson and Bell then presented the team with a plaque and certificate honoring their championship win. A more unique prize, though, came in the form of a flag which had been flown above the state capitol in honor of the Eagles. The gifts were presented to coach Bill Edmundson, who had been at Rosewood High for 31 years and coached the wrestling team for all 26 years of its existence.

After all that time and no shortage of success, Edmundson will retire at the end of this year. After the presentation, as people headed for the door, he discussed his mindset as his last season at the helm of the team nears its end.

"The biggest hope for me is finding a quality replacement, somebody who is going to continue what we started, because it's been kind of my baby," he said. "I think we've got some quality candidates coming up. That's the biggest thing, just making sure the tradition is continued and not just end because I'm leaving."

Of course, Edmundson is not the only one responsible for the wrestling program's recent success. It took a dedicated team of athletes who were willing to put their faith in the coaches, Edmundson said.

"They bought into the program, they took a sense of ownership, and they saw that initially, with local level stuff, the hard work they were putting in was paying off," he said. "Buying into the program was really what has made the difference here."