Wrestlers Hone Skills at Harbour City Hubbub

Post date: Nov 22, 2010 4:30:37 PM

Wrestlers from the Alberni Valley Wrestling Club travelled to Nanaimo to compete at the inaugural Harbour City Hubbub Takedown Competition at Wellington Secondary. Despite it being an early season exhibition event the Alberni Wrestlers already showed signs that they will be a force to be reckoned with on the mats this season.

The event featured a unique format where wrestlers only competed to take each other down. Rookie coach and 2010 ADSS graduate Kraig Doskotch explained the event as follows; “In regular freestyle wrestling once you take your opponent down you try to turn them to score points and ultimately pin them. At this tournament wrestlers had to stand up as soon as the takedown was complete. The idea behind an exhibition event like this is to have wrestlers develop their takedown skills, develop their conditioning, and encourage offensive wrestling. I think it worked and it was a lot of fun to watch.”

Seven Alberni wrestlers went undefeated in route to winning their weight classes and claiming the title of Takedown Champion. Veteran Grade 12 wrestlers Austin Evans (58 kg Men) and Sky Dauost (68 kg Men) demonstrated that they intend to lead their team by example. Grade 11 wrestler Cullen Hines (74 kg Men) looked strong in his matches executing exciting throws and leg attacks. New additions to the ADSS team this year but certainly not the sport Grade 9 wrestlers Jesse (45 kg Men) and Jordon Wagner (48 kg Men) were dominant in their weight classes recording over 30 takedowns between the two of them. On the women’s side Bailey Durning looked very tough beating a provincially ranked wrestler in a barn burner match at 59 kilograms. Dunn Middle School wrestler Emma Vanderlee (66 kg Women) proved that although she is only Grade 8 she could be a threat at the Island Championships this year.

A number of Alberni’s upcoming wrestlers lost to only one opponent to finish second in their weight classes. On the women’s side Remi Wells (41 kg), Sophie Vanderlee (49 kg), and Julia McGowan (66 kg) all finished second in their respective classes despite only being middle school wrestlers at EJ Dunn. On the men’s side Russell David (59 kg), Sheldon Haddad (59 kg), Johannes Kulich (63 kg), Nolan Badovinac (74 kg), and Christian Anderson (100 kg) also finish second in their pools.

Rounding out the placings for Alberni were Lauren Barker (3rd at 43 kg Women), Michel Kurucz (3rd at 55 kg Women), Eryk McKenzie (3rd at 42 kg Men), Brayden Arsenault (3rd at 33 kg Men), Michaela Dick (4th at 55 kg Women), Riley Neville (4th at 88 kg Men), Danika Bratt (5th at 55 kg Women) and Oliver Witham (5th at 52 kg Men).

Alberni Wrestling Head Coach James Messenger had this to say about his team’s performance. “I am pleased with how we wrestled on the mats today. This was a perfect early season development opportunity. We have a great group of kids who are showing a commitment to attending practice, training hard, and improving their skills. It is only November but our small core group of Grade 11 and 12 wrestlers have stepped up in terms of leadership and dedication and we have a great group of wrestlers in Grade 8, 9 & 10 following their lead. I am really excited about what the rest of the season and the next few years have in store for our program.”

Novice wrestlers from Neill, EJ Dunn and ADSS will practice this week in preparation for the Island Novice Tournament in Campbell River November 27. Experienced wrestlers will take the weekend off. Their next competition will be the Roberts Rumble December 4th in Burnaby.

Pictures from the event can be viewed at: http://www.alberniwrestling.ca/