Kirkland Middle School wrestling coach Terry Higbee said Jackson Lux knows what it takes to be a champion.
The eighth-grader steps onto the mat with total focus before mixing it up with his opponents.
“You know that he is geared in and already has got things pictured in his head,” Higbee said.
Over the last three years, Lux has nabbed many victories and copious pins and recently won another district title, this time at 120 pounds. Lux is just the fourth KMS wrestler in the last 40 years to amass an undefeated record during three years of middle school grappling at KMS, according to Higbee. Lux went 27-0 during his time at KMS and this year notched nine pins and didn’t allow a point.
Lux is drawn to wrestling because of the one-on-one aspect and that it doesn’t resemble other sports. He likes the discipline that he’s learned and the grit that transpires on the mat when he’s in the throes of a solid battle.
“You wanna wrestle to win,” said Lux, who wrestled at 85 pounds in sixth grade and at 110 pounds in seventh grade. “It’s really hard doing it. It’s not just technique, you have to be physically strong.”
He’s exhausted, but satisfied when matches are done.
“Go home and pass out,” he said with a laugh.
Everyone has a hand in Lux’s success, he said, from his coaches to his training partners. Lux puts in heaps of time on the mat at KMS, but also at Chain Wrestling in Carnation and with a private coach. Along with Higbee, there’s other vital coaches in Thomas Marum, Smokey McClure and Paul Kaiser; Lux’s training partners are his brother Elijah and Chris Neal.
Higbee said that Lux is self-motivated, easy to coach and enjoys the sport so much that he’s recruited friends to join him on the squad.
Lux sports an infectious smile at times, but gives off a serious vibe as well, Higbee added.
“He’s still getting the job done. He’s still gonna be out there leading his friends on to do their best,” the coach said.
Goals on Lux’s wrestling list include beating older brother and Lake Washington High grappler Elijah and winning some 3A KingCo titles when he begins competing for the Kangs next season.
“I’ve got a lot more wrestling,” said Lux, noting that next year is “gonna be really hard and challenging — I’m looking to do my best.”
KMS — which tied with Redmond Middle School for the district crown — also featured champs Chase Martin at 90 pounds and Luke Ensinger at 75 pounds.
Seventh-grader Martin rebounded from a broken thumb to finish 5-0 and notch his second straight district title.
“He still performed at the highest level. He’s like the Energizer Bunny, that guy is all over the place,” Higbee said with a chuckle.
As for Ensinger, he wedged it into his head that nobody was going to stop him, Higbee said. Like Lux, Ensinger went 9-0 with all pins this season.
“Luke just got out there and tore ‘em apart,” the coach said.