Scott said he likes the manner in which the brothers approached their bouts and how they demonstrated to the younger wrestlers on the team the intensity needed for each dual.
“We need to feed off each other — lead by example,” he said. “They feed off each other. It’s a snowball effect. Winning is contagious.”
Robert Henderson said he owed much of his development as a collegiate wrestler to his brother’s presence.
“I wouldn’t be here without him, and he wouldn’t be here without me,” he said.
“It’s nice having these last five years together because the real world is coming up, and we won’t be together as much. But still, it’s exciting.”
After the twins notched the Tar Heels’ first two victories of the night, the team carried that momentum through the conclusion of the dual, only dropping one more match at the 285-pound division.
The rest of the team caught the winning bug after the Henderson twins put away their competitors. The Tar Heels won four straight matches following Robert Henderson’s 10-2 decision.
“I didn’t want to go back to the bench knowing I could have scored a little bit more,” he said.
But Scott said a lack of toughness was the cause for the team’s three defeats to a team with no nationally ranked wrestlers.
“There were some ugly losses,” Scott said. “I didn’t think we were tough enough.”
On this night, the Henderson brothers showed the toughness Scott desired. Scott noted Evan Henderson’s resiliency in overcoming a worthy opponent to eventually earn a pin.
“That’s what I wanted,” Scott said. “That’s what we need to keep striving for — to be better and better and to put the team on your back and always do more.”
The Henderson brothers have come to embody the uncompromising spirit that Scott champions — one that helped Scott to win a national championship at Oklahoma State and an Olympic bronze medal in 2012.
Scott said he knows the team will have to adopt the toughness of the Henderson brothers to keep winning throughout the team’s challenging schedule.
Robert Henderson said the team’s leaders are trying to equip the younger wrestlers for the postseason.
“It’s not here yet, but our main goal is March,” he said.
The Tar Heels aren’t ready yet — but the Henderson brothers are.