It took Logan Borcsane four years to land a kickflip.
Borcsane, a Lakewood Ranch High senior wrestler, started out as a skateboarder. He started when he was in fourth grade, living in Detroit, Michigan.
He was messing around with a skateboard for the fun of it, but nailing a kickflip — a trick where a skater flips his skateboard 360 degrees along the vertical axis — soon became a tedious task. No matter how much Borcsane worked at getting the footwork just right, he said, he could not land the trick.
After two years of constant trying, Borcsane gave up, or at least he thought he did.
In 2018, a year after moving to Lakewood Ranch, Borcsane picked up his skateboard again on a whim. He decided to try the kickflip again. He succeeded.
He finally had the balance necessary to stick the landing. Borcsane, who still skates, now considers the kickflip his favorite trick, in part because of the journey he took to complete it.
It was patience and perseverance that led to Borcsane achieving his skating goal. Those same qualities have transferred to his newfound love of wrestling.
As of Jan. 4, Borcsane is 18-0 in his senior season while wrestling at 113 pounds. As a junior, Borcsane’s first year in wrestling, he finished 32-16 at the 103-pound level and reached the regional stage of the Florida High School Athletic Association postseason.
Despite having little experience in a team setting, Borcsane joined the wrestling squad after friends like senior wrestler Thomas Bisordi praised the work Head Coach Pat Ancil and his assistants had done, helping people become better athletes while having a lot of fun along the way.
Borcsane was intrigued. Upon giving it a go, he was immediately enamored. He said he liked the feeling of control he got from wrestling — when it goes right, you have the ultimate say over what your opponent does. He was also exhausted by that first practice. It’s a feeling most people don’t enjoy, but Borcsane did.
“I could barely go for a full minute,” Borcsane said of his first time on the mat. “I remember laying on the floor after getting beat up. I had been picked up by my leg and slammed. I was thinking, ‘God, (that hurt).’ But it was also fun.”
Ancil said it was apparent Borcsane had the athletic talent to excel. Even though his traditional sports experience was lacking, Borcsane had experience lifting weights, which Ancil liked. It meant he would not be intimidated by the grind necessary to keep his body in shape. That foundation allowed Ancil to focus solely on wrestling techniques with Borcsane, going slowly so as to not overwhelm him in his first year.
“We try to keep it real simple,” Ancil said. “We taught him two or three good takedowns and drilled, drilled, drilled it into him until it became routine. Logan studies wrestling. He goes on YouTube and watches college and high school wrestlers. That’s like having your own coach in your room, so he picked it up quickly.”
A sweep single-leg takedown is Borcsane’s specialty, he said. It’s a simple move — the offensive wrestler gets low and to the outside of their opponent, then grabs his leg and topples his to the mat — but a consistent one. It’s the signature move of reigning 133-pound NCAA champion Vito Arujau of Cornell University, one of the wrestlers Borcsane watches to get better. Studying his film has helped Borcsane improve his technique, he said.
By the end of his junior season, Borcsane felt like he had a grasp on the skills, but he still needed to improve his conditioning in order to tire out his opponents. This offseason, Borcsane pushed his personal workout routines to the next level.
“I always do another rep,” Borcsane said. “If I’m doing a set of sprints and my target number is five, I’m going to do six or seven. If I have to run a mile, I’m going to run two miles. I’m always topping what I did before.”
On top of his personal work, Borcsane participated in a wrestling camp at Ohio State University and participated in the 2023 AAU Scholastic Duals in Orlando in June, where he faced some of the best wrestlers in the region and went 4-2. The work has paid off entering 2024. Not only is Borcsane undefeated during the FHSAA high school season, but he has developed the confidence to go toe-to-toe with anyone, feeling no intimidation.
“He has realized what he can actually do,” Ancil said. “He is combining his technique with his strength. For only his second year, he’s doing quite well. There is no reason he cannot be on the podium at the state tournament. He's become a good leader in terms of doing the right things at the right time. We never have to worry about, ‘Is Logan doing this or that?’ He’s been great.”
Borcsane isn’t worried about the state tournament yet. He said he is too busy taking each day as it comes, getting a little better each day.
Ryan Kohn is the sports editor for Sarasota and East County and a Missouri School of Journalism graduate. He was born and raised in Olney, Maryland. His biggest inspirations are Wright Thompson and Alex Ovechkin. His strongest belief is that mint chip ice cream is unbeatable.