Sports

Opponents of Cowichan wrestlers meet their match

Nolan Mitchell of the Cowichan Valley Wrestling Club keeps his eyes on the mat to avoid a hard landing in competition against Jimmy Beck of Salt Spring. Mitchell won the 45-51 kg class. - Andrew Leong
Nolan Mitchell of the Cowichan Valley Wrestling Club keeps his eyes on the mat to avoid a hard landing in competition against Jimmy Beck of Salt Spring. Mitchell won the 45-51 kg class.
— image credit: Andrew Leong

The Cougar Wrestling Invitational always brings out the best in Cowichan Valley Wrestling Club members.

The eighth-annual event set up headquarters at another different venue, Cowichan Secondary School, and the club pulled off another phenomenal meet.

“It actually went really well at Cowichan Secondary,’’ said CVWC head coach Nick Zuback. “We were worried about the size. The gym’s a little smaller, but it worked out.’’

Thanks to great work by coach Craig Lauridsen, a five-mat configuration was worked out and filled the gym with action.

“From basically the start of the tournament to the end, it ran very smoothly and very little injuries,’’ said Zuback.

Several sponsors came on board to lend a valuable hand.

Senior results included victories for Cowichan’s Faye Tuck (47-50 kilogram girls), Maegan Kuruvita (63-67 kg girls), Randi Thomas (heavyweight girls) and Nolan Mitchell (45-51 kg boys) in their respective categories.

Zuback tabs Thomas as a wrestler to watch. She’s only in Grade 10 and placed at provincials last year.

Cole Nikirk was second behind the national champion in the boys’ 77-80 kg division.

Junior highlights featured a gold medal performance by Kayden Dorma in boys’ 48 kg.

“From last week to this week, definite change,’’ said Zuback of Dorma’s performance. “He got the mat rust off, you could say.’’

Andrea Morris (42-45 kg), Chelsea Warke (51 kg) and Molly O’Donnell were other junior girls’ winners. Xavier Junneau topped the 35 kg junior boys’ event.

Austin Lambert won the 46-50 kg elementary boys’ class and several others had runner-up placings in their divisions.

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