Top Performer: Parker Noem

CUSTER, S.D. — Parker Noem is chasing that trip to the podium.

One year removed from wrestling in the 2020 State Class B Wrestling Tournament, Noem is back.

He was an eighth-grader last year, but you won’t find him making excuses, even though there were some butterflies in his first trip to state.

“I very nervous my first year, so I don’t think I’m going to be that nervous this year because I know what it’s like and be prepared for it,” said Noem, who’s a freshman wrestler at Custer High School. “Go out there and don’t even think about it and just wrestle.”  

But something is different this year. Perhaps a bit of confidence due to Noem wrestling year-round and performing well. Preparing him for his freshman season.

“My confidence level boosted this summer because of all the wrestling we did around the area and we went to national tournaments,” Noem said. 

Noem wants a top-six finish at state and the approach with his head coach, Jared Webster, is one that focuses on learning from past mistakes and developing the full wrestler.

“Webster puts it on the T.V., and he shows it to us, makes us drill it for like 10 minutes and then we get it down and then we wrestle,” Noem said. “He’s like a wrestler. He wrestles with us, he’s just like a high school wrestler.”

But to Webster, the continuation of added year-round practice has and can make all the difference for Noem and his team moving forward.

“He’s an excellent kid that loves to wrestle all summer long, he’s always in the room and he’s going to bring the rest of these kids with him this summer,” Webster said. “You know, we’re going to have big goals next year and he’s gotta step up as a leader taking them and I believe he can. He’s a great kid on the mat and so if we could just keep him going and keep the kids pushing that are around his age group, bright things.”

The additional time on the wrestling mat certainly kept Parker sharp. He even moved up four weight classes from 132 to 160.

Although, Webster says he doesn’t want Noem holding back when the lights shine the brightest, especially after a second-place finish at regions.

“Parker’s gotten a lot bigger, you know, his technique is smooth, once he opens up, he’s fun to watch,” Webster said. “You know, when he hangs back, we don’t like to see that. When he gets on his offense, he’s a dangerous individual. Hopefully, we can get on the offense, on the attack here. I think good things will happen.”

Congratulations to Parker Noem on being named a NewsCenter1’s top performer.

Parker Noem Plaque

Top Performer Plaque is provided by Vanway Trophy and Award in Rapid City.

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Categories: High School, Local News, South Dakota News, Sports, Top Performer