In just his first year with the Carrollton High School wrestling team, freshman Brent Parivechio proved to be one of the program's fastest rising stars.
After finishing first in a loaded area, the 106-pounder proceeded to place second at sectionals and fourth in state to reach the podium in his first attempt at the prep level.
Parivechio, the 2016-17 Times-Georgian All-Area Co-Newcomer of the Year, earned the respect of his teammates right away through his work ethic, and Carrollton head coach Michael Cleek was equally impressed.
"Brent came in and won area, did well at sectionals and then got on the podium at state as a first-year wrestler," Cleek said. "You can't ask for much more. Expect for maybe a state title, which he's going to be working on for next year. So we hope for good things from him."
For the Carrollton head coach, Parivechio becoming one of 10 Trojan grapplers qualifying for state didn't come as a surprise. Having been on his radar well before he stepped foot into the program, Cleek knew the freshman was bound for immediate success, even in a daunting area with the likes of Woodland, Cass and Kell.
"We knew he had a long career as a USA wrestler and had some success at that level. And we knew that he would come in and be a starter," Cleek said. "We weren't sure if it was going to be at 106 or 113, but he settled in at 106 toward the end of the season and he did a really good job for us at the area, sectional and state tournaments."
But moving up to the high school ranks wasn't all easy sailing for the Trojan newcomer. Having wrestled since the third grade, the transition onto the high school scene was the toughest challenge for Parivechio to date. But he found a way to power through.
"It was definitely a hard transition," Parivechio said. "I quickly learned that where I was last year in the middle school level is completely different than high school. But going through that process, I definitely got substantially better and finished better than I thought I would. Especially at area when I got first place, I didn't see that coming."
After a successful regular season, the grappler made it to the GHSA Traditional State Wrestling Championships in February, where he hauled in a fourth-place finish. While impressive for a first-timer, finishing fourth simply wasn't enough.
"Going to state was one of the best moments I've had in my entire life," Parivechio said. "The experience was great, but I didn't necessarily sit on where I finished too well. I had beaten the guy who finished ahead of me in the weekends before, so it definitely motivated me to to go back and finish even higher on the podium."
With three years in the program left for the young Parivechio, the sky is the limit for what he could accomplish during that period of time. But as he admits, to reach even higher heights, he needs to lock in even more.
"I need to be more focused. When I got into the arena at state, the lights kind of caught me," Parivechio said. "I wasn't as ready as I needed to be, but I feel like that experience will definitely help me down the road should I go back."