By: Hayden Penney
On Saturday, March 3rd 2018, the Churchill wrestling team competed in a provincial qualifying tournament in Swift Current. Two of the wrestlers moved on and will be competing at provincials in Saskatoon in a weeks time.
The Churchill wrestlers who competed were Damon Marinuk, Jayde Desroches, Brooklyn Shaw and Margaret McDonald. Desroches and McDonald both qualified for provincials with the latter not losing a single match at regionals.
The wrestlers felt perseverance and aggression were the main contributors to wins. “I didn’t give up, and I pounced when it was time” said Desroches.
However, they said wrestling tournaments are more than just doing battle. The tournaments also offer a great opportunity to meet new friends and people. Marinuk said “competition isn’t always about trying to take the other opponent’s head off, you know? There’s some bonding in between”.
The Churchill Wrestling Head Coach, Heidi Soares, was pleased with how her athletes performed. “They’re going into their matches ready and prepared, and they’re fighting until the end, and that’s exactly what we want win or lose. As long as they put up the good fight” said Soares.
She explained what a pleasure it is to coach such “good sports” in her wrestlers. She even sees glimpses of herself in the CCHS wrestlers. “Both Jayde and Brooklyn have often reminded me of myself when I was in High-School in wrestling and so that’s kind of nice to see as well and it makes me want to keep coaching” says Soares.
An official at the event, Lloyd Tulp, who has been officiating wrestling for 5 years explained how hard the refs work to be as close to perfect as possible. Big tournaments such as this regionals event have a huge amount of dedicated officials, score keepers and camera men/women to make sure all the matches are competed officially. After all the sport of wrestling gave to him, Tulp feels it’s only right for him to give back to the sport and be the best referee he can be.
Tulp also spoke on the great things he sees from the wrestlers, “As an official you get to see the relationships being built between the competitors, they’ll beat on each other on the mat, and when they’re done they’re sitting beside each other on the sidelines talking, or they’re friends”.