Even as Logan Everett was talking about his last two weeks of wrestling he seemed to be looking for an explanation of where everything went wrong.
He expected more out of himself than a second-place finish at the District 4 tournament, and a third-place finish at the Northeast Regional. He thinks it was those expectations he heaped upon himself which had a part in a performance which just wasn't up to his own standards.
"I think it's kind of in my head a little bit," the Williamson senior 126-pounder said after receiving his bronze medal on Saturday. "I have big goals for myself and I'm kind of shying away from it. I just expect a lot from myself. I guess I don't want to let myself down, so I'm struggling to open up a little bit."
Everett seemed hesitant over the course of the last two weeks. He went from coming into the District 4 tournament undefeated to losing in the finals at districts and in the semifinals at regionals. The returning state fifth-place finisher finally opened up with his wrestling when it mattered most.
He outscored his two opponents in the consolation bracket at regionals, 17-0, including a dominant 7-0 win over Montoursville freshman Keith Batkowski in the third-place match. It was a step in the right direction for Everett to get things back to the way they were when he was 31-0 entering the District 4 tournament.
"I came back and did the best I could for the situation," Everett said. "I think the adversity is going to help me out. I can't stop training, especially if you're not the best."
Everett's been a mainstay among the best wrestlers in District 4 for the last three years. His appearance in the state tournament, which begins Thursday at the Giant Center in Hershey, will be his third. He's been in the District 4 final in each of the last two years, and he has 142 career wins.
His career resume can't be argued with. With a top-eight finish this weekend, he becomes just the second two-time state placewinner in school history, joining Chris Collum. But he knows he can't have two more weeks like he just had.
Everett was beaten soundly, 7-2, in the District 4 final by Southern Columbia sophomore Kent Lane, and then lost 5-1 to Wyoming Area's Andy Schutz in the semifinals at regionals. But those two losses seemed to light a fire under the senior.
He was back to the attacking wrestler that's made him a threat on the state level each of the last three years. And the two convincing wins to end his regional tournament were exactly what he needed to take that step back to being the wrestler who was in the state semifinals a year ago.
"Last week was not a good week for me at all," Everett said. "I felt terrible. I felt like I had no idea what was going on at all. I'm struggling to open up. I felt like my last match (of regionals) was a little bit of improvement. Once I got going, I opened up."
He'll have to open up this weekend, especially being on a side of the Class AA 126-pound bracket which includes four other former state qualifiers or placewinners including himself. His preparation in recent weeks, though, has been geared toward being at his best for this weekend.
Leading into the district tournament he was working out three and four times a day. He said he went into districts a little physically tired, so he dialed back on the training as he got closer to the regional tournament.
He realizes that everything that's happened the last two weeks is behind him now and is focused on making one more deep run.
"It's a clean slate now," Everett said. "So I need to go right at it with nothing to lose."