C-SD’s Rhyheem Johnson gets 100th wrestling victory

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Special to The Dorchester Banner/Judy Crain
Cambridge-South Dorchester senior Rhyheem Johnson, right, earned his 100th high school wrestling win Monday, on the first day of the Bayside Athletic Conference Championships at C-SD.

CAMBRIDGE — Rhyheem Johnson is rounding out his fourth and final high school wrestling season with an impressive accomplishment — the Cambridge-South Dorchester High School senior earned his 100th win on Monday. He wrestles in the 182-pound class.

“It was a huge relief, honestly,” he said. “I had all this pressure on me. Now I can really focus on everything.”

Currently ranked in the top 20 statewide, Rhyheem is determined to take his wrestling as far as possible in upcoming state championships.

It’s all a long way from his beginnings as a freshman at North Dorchester High School, where he wrestled for one year before transferring to C-SD to play football. In those days, he said, it was easy to grow discouraged by the tough work involved in the sport, as well as intimidating stories of opponents’ skills.

Now, after gaining experience and perspective, he has some advice for tomorrow’s wrestlers, advising them to persevere through the rough patches. “Stick with it,” he said. “It’s going to be rough.”

What got him past the difficulties? “Dedication, putting in the work at practice, team support and family support,” Rhyheem said, as the crowd filling the bleachers behind him cheered other Eastern Shore athletes competing on three mats in C-SD’s gym.

He gave much of the credit for his success to his family, especially his mother Crystal Johnson, and brothers Larry Friend, as well as Trevon, Jordan and Odell Johnson.

“Family support is huge in my book,” he said. “My brothers all wrestled. They taught me everything I know. They are all amazing in the way they support me.”

Despite all the excitement involved with senior year, Rhyheem still has his sights set on a future of education and public service. “I plan to attend a four-year university to play collegiate football, and to pursue my dream of being a Maryland State Trooper.”

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