Team Greco formed in 2013 after two year old Greco Roman Bouzakis was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor. Physicians only gave him 2-11 months to live, and he underwent 29 separate radiation treatments in the following months. After 13 months, Greco is still alive and kicking.
When the oncologists revealed to Troy Bouzakis that his son was dying, a physician encouraged him and Greco to live as much as possible over the next few months. Bouzakis took this to heart and formed Team Greco, a wrestling team that travels the country to compete in national wrestling tournaments.
Greco Roman, Greco’s namesake, is a style of wrestling that the team competes in along with folkstyle, the type practiced in American schools. Out of 6 national duals attended, the team has yielded 16 All Americans (finishing in the top 8 for their individual bracket) and placed in multiple tournaments.
Every member makes a huge commitment by joining the team—kids as young as elementary school go through grueling practices and extensive travelling all across the country, just to represent Greco. At least 12 tournaments are scheduled for the 2014-15 season, some in states as far away as Oklahoma or Michigan.
Steinbrenner’s wrestling team has worked closely with Team Greco and the Bouzakis family. Last year, the team sponsored a t-shirt sale in support of Greco, and Bouzakis has attended multiple tournaments and practices in an assistant coaching role. Steinbrenner wrestlers attend the same wrestling club, Caveman Wrestling, as many of Team Greco’s members, and can often be seen wearing Team Greco gear at their meets.
As Team Greco’s mantra goes, “Challenges are certain—Defeat is optional”, and Greco hasn’t been defeated yet.
Brett Behers/Opinion Editor