Athlete, Wrestling, 2008-2010
It’s simple. Actions really do speak louder than words. Former Waubonsee wrestler Omi Acosta is a prime example of this. Beneath his quiet and calm demeanor lurked a determined competitor. And when he stepped on to a wrestling mat, his actions spoke volumes.
A native of Homestead, Florida, Acosta wrestled for South Dade High School, finishing sixth at the Florida State Finals his junior year before an injury derailed his senior season. Through a connection with former Chiefs assistant coach Dale Gross, Acosta ventured north to attend Waubonsee and quietly, as well as quickly, began to make his mark. As a 133-pound freshman, he qualified for Nationals by finishing fourth at the Central Region Tournament. Ranked 11th nationally in his weight class, Acosta then finished fifth at the NJCAA National Tournament to earn All-American status. The following season he made a memorable run to the 133-pound National Title to lead the Chiefs to a fourth place finish nationally among NJCAA Division III teams. Acosta defeated four straight returning All-Americans at the National Tournament, culminating with a title match triumph over the nation’s second-ranked grappler who had beaten him three previous times. In a landslide he was voted Waubonsee’s Male Athlete of the Year for 2009-2010.
Acosta received an athletic scholarship to Grand View University in Des Moines, Iowa, and qualified for the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) National Championships his junior year, but did not place. However, as a senior he again stepped up his game and went on to grab the 133-pound National Title, helping lead Grand View to the school’s first ever NAIA National Championship. Not surprisingly he won the Vikings’ Most Dedicated award and Most Valuable Athlete award for 2012.
Former Waubonsee head coach John Robinson describes Acosta as “an outstanding individual on and off the wrestling mat. He listened, worked hard and just kept improving.” Acosta earned his bachelor’s degree from Grand View in 2013 with a double major in Spanish and criminal justice. He served as an assistant coach for the Vikings for two seasons, helping them to again win the NAIA National Championship. He is presently an assistant coach for the United States Coast Guard Academy team in New London, Connecticut. Acosta is currently pursuing a master’s degree in sports science through Ohio University, and lives in Groton, Connecticut.