Submitted by Orcas Island Wrestling coaches Jason Dean and Rob Harvey.
The Orcas Island Wrestling Club is winding down its fifth season.
The club attended two tournaments this season with a handful of youth wrestlers, who saw this level of competition for their first time. Throughout the season the number of wrestlers fluctuated between six and 18, with a solid core group of 11 making all practices and sticking it out to the end.
Competition with wrestlers from other clubs around the state is a constant goal the club is striving for, and we hope that as the club continues to build and improve there will be many more to come in the upcoming seasons.
For their first tournament on Jan. 29, the Orcas Island Wrestling Club traveled to Ferndale with seven wrestlers to compete against around 350 athletes from clubs around the state. Those in attendance were Makar Ashirov, Adonis Kasperski, Daniel Kasperski, Andre Kasperski, Tim Malo, Tom Malo and James Harvey.
In tournament brackets, the wrestlers are classified by their age, weight and experience so they face other similarly matched athletes. The Orcas Island Wrestling Club came out with four total wins and a giant leap in the attending wrestlers’ experience and desire to continue.
On Feb. 14, the Orcas Island Wrestling Club attended another tournament hosted by Ferndale High School, with 250 athletes. Six of the seven wrestlers who attended the January 29 tournament made it to the February 14 tournament.
The Orcas Island Wrestling Club improved in victories and accomplishments, coming away with four wins – but the majority of their losses came down to “decision,” meaning the athletes lasted all three rounds only to lose by a difference in technical points scored. Adonis Kasperski, wrestling in the 75-pound weight class, won two of his three matches, pinning his first opponent and beating the second by points. Though he lost his last match with a score of 3-11 after three rounds, his victories were enough to earn him a second place medal. Tim and Tom Malo also each won a match that day, Tim by points and Tom by a pin. All in all, February 14 was a great day to be an Orcas Island Wrestling Club wrestler.
The wrestling club is hoping to continue growing. The club’s goals for next year include building a larger core group of wrestlers, participating in more tournaments, and above all, teaching sportsmanship discipline, mental toughness and camaraderie. Though the club will be rolling up the mats on March 10 to conclude the 2015-2016 season, they will be rolling them out again in October 2016, welcoming all wrestlers and all those who have thought about trying wrestling to come out and join the club.