Remember the high school wrestler who was forced to cut off his dreadlocks before a match back in December?
Yeah, well, Andrew Johnson just placed 3rd in his district — qualifying for the prestigious regional championships … which means he’s one step closer to making the N.J. state tourney!!!
Johnson’s story made national headlines back in December when a referee told him his hairstyle violated high school wrestling rules … and he needed to chop his locks or forfeit the match.
The 16-year-old junior reluctantly agreed to cut his hair — and still won the match — but he was visibly devastated.
The good news … he eventually got back on the mat and returned to form — securing 3rd place at the NJSIAA/Rothman Orthopaedics District 29 tournament in New Jersey over the weekend in the 120-pound division.
After the district tourney, Andrew told NJ.com, “I tried to block everything out and just wrestle.”
One of the cooler parts of the story … Johnson’s little bro, Nate — a freshman — finished second in the tourney and will also advance to this week’s regionals.
“We’re both moving on, so we’re ready,” Andrew said.
Their mom, Rosa Johnson, also weighed in — saying, “Our family has just rallied around them and kept them focused.”
“We’ve tried to protect them. They’ve worked really hard for this and wanted to keep them focused.”
A rep for the board tells us, discipline for Maloney will not come down until after the season … ’cause they want to give Johnson “time to finish the season with no additional distractions.”