Submitted by Orcas Island Wrestling Club.
The 10th season for the Orcas Island Wrestling Club has come to a near-epic conclusion. It would be fair to say that the club completed some of the previous seasons’ end goals. The core group of wrestlers grew in practices to an average of between 12 and 18 kids attending and up to 22 kids showing up to test their stamina, strength and skills with and against one another. Young wrestlers represented Orcas in six off-island tournaments. The representation at the tournaments ranged from two athletes at the beginning to a final 15 young wrestlers.
The wrestling tournaments are sanctioned by USA Wrestling and hosted by club teams all around the state. There are often 200-300 athletes competing and representing their clubs at these events. Orcas wrestlers who attended tournaments this year included Douglas Kirby, who went to six tournaments, placing first in four of them, second in one and at the final tournament took third place after wrestling six matches. Paxton Irwin competed in three tournaments and won two second place medals. Diego Puentes attended three tournaments, coming in third place in one and fourth place in another.
Diego Gonzales-Cruz competed in three and placed third in two of them and fourth in one. Jason Rodriguez went to one tournament and took first place. Makenzi Beach-Yerly went to three and took third place. Jakson Beach-Yerly competed in three and took second place twice. Mario Nunez made it to two tournaments and placed fourth in his first one. Ty Nunez also went to two and took fourth place. Drew Nunez showed up to two and won one second place medal. CJ Nunez went to two tournaments and won one first placed in one of them. The following kids competed in one tournament each: Olive Mckenzie; Tim Malo; Tom Malo; Zade Pechacek; and Corah Pechacek. Tazman Pechacek competed in one tournament and took second place. Greyson Howard made it to one tournament and took fifth place.
One of the many goals of the club every year is to attend as many tournaments with as many wrestlers as possible and this season they set a high bar to jump over next season.
The final upcoming events for the Orcas Island Wrestling Club include an end-of-the-season banquet for the wrestlers and the super duper raffle for the community that will help recuperate expenses incurred this year and prepare the club to launch the next season in October. Look for wrestlers selling raffle tickets at Island Market on the weekends of March 21-22 and March 28-29.
Anyone interested in finding out more about the club can check out the Orcas Island Wrestling Club’s group page on Facebook, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call Coach Jason Dean at 360-388-8624. The club accepts ages five and up.
OIWC plans to continue building and growing over the coming years. The club’s goals for next year include establishing an even larger core group, participating in more tournaments and above all teaching sportsmanship, discipline, mental toughness and camaraderie to all.