LANSING | T.F. South wrestling coach Mike Tisza knows this season is a little special.
His Rebels have had a good year so far and finished second at the South Suburban Blue championships. South had two champs in Blake Tisza (138 pounds) and Austin Berryhill (160).
What is really special is that this is the only year he will have both of his sons Blake and Jake on the same high school team. Blake, a three-time SSC champ is a senior, while Jake is a freshman.
While some coaches will shy away from coaching their own sons or daughters, it has been fun for Tisza.
"I enjoy it and I like being with them," Tisza said. "I guess sometimes you can be a little tougher on them, but I expect a lot from them and all the kids in the wrestling room."
Next year, Blake will be away at college and said it has been a good experience. Mike has coached the boys since they began wrestling with the Crosstown Crushers, which is based at Bloom Trail High School.
"It can be tough because the coach is your dad, but I have enjoyed it," Blake said. "It was nice having my brother on the team this year.
"Next year, it will be a little different because I will be on my own. It will be different, but it is also good to be on my own."
The brothers said they have enjoyed wrestling together this year.
"My brother has always been there for me and helping me work on my moves," Jake Tisza said. "We are all together and we do come home and work on different things, but we also know you can't always bring it (wrestling) home."
Blake and Jake's mom, Shelley, agrees.
"They come home and look at tapes and work on things, but Mike also knows to leave them alone," Shelley Tisza said. "Ever since they were little they would wrestle in the house. No broken lamps though."
Shelly has taken her share of photos of her two sons and husband over the years. She too, can feel for them whether it is a big win or a close loss.
"I love it and for Mike to be their coach makes it that much more fun," she said. "When they come home, though, they know home is home."