Shakopee celebrated after beating Stillwater to win the Class 3A championship. [CARLOS GONZALEZ firstname.lastname@example.org]
Shakopee coach Jim Jackson has seen it from both sides.
After the No. 1-seeded Sabers held off No. 2-seeded Stillwater 35-22 to win their first Class 3A wrestling team championship, it’s safe to say Jackson knows which side he prefers.
“This feels great,” Jackson said. “I haven’t done this for awhile.”
Jackson won 14 state championships in a record-setting 17-year span at Apple Valley, the last one coming in 2012.
He has also sat in the coach’s chair (stood, actually — Jackson rarely sits during a match) when his team suffered a state tournament loss like last season, when Shakopee was defeated by St. Michael-Albertville in the 3A championship match.
So Jackson wasn’t taking any chances this year. His team might have been the 3A favorite, but he was hearing none of it. Looking ahead was strictly forbidden.