Chemainus Secondary School is hosting the Island high school wrestling championships Saturday and five wrestlers from the school will figure prominently in the competition.
In fact, Chemainus’ four girls make it a top contender, along with Cowichan Secondary School, for the most points overall in the girls’ division among competing schools.
“Both have decent numbers and some pretty tough girls,” noted Cowichan Valley Wrestling Club coach Nick Zuback.
The Chemainus group of Hannah Tuplin, Emily Reid, Rosie Klatt-Leblanc and Chloe Siddals possesses the talent to make first overall for the girls happen.
Luther Tiddler is the lone Chemainus Secondary representative in the boys events.
Chemainus has become a great venue for these high-level competitions and the CVWC’s wrestling clinics there have captured the attention of many students to join the program. “It’s a nice exchange there,” said Zuback.
The action runs from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
“It should be a good showing from the entire Island and hopefully our local schools will do very well,” said Zuback.
Tuplin, with her International experience, is the star of the program and ready to run roughshod over the Island competition in her 54 kilogram weight class.
“Not that I know of,” she said of any potential challenges, “but I haven’t been at a lot of the tournaments.”
“Our goal for her is to obviously win provincials in her Grade 12 year,” Zuback pointed out. “Hopefully, this will be her year.”
The provincial title has so far eluded Tuplin, but she’s vowing to change that.
“This year, it’s been tough for her,” Zuback indicated. “She’s had some nagging injuries, but nothing too serious to prevent her from wrestling in provincials.”
The provincials are two weeks after the meet in Chemainus.
Tuplin has captured the attention of university programs and “a number of schools have made offers for next year,” Zuback noted.
At the recent Western Canada Age Class Championships in Abbotsford, Tuplin won gold in the Juvenile girls 54 kg and stayed the extra day, ending up fifth in her first university tournament.
“I was competing against university girls,” Tuplin pointed out. “Getting fifth, that wasn’t too bad.”
She wrestled four girls, including one from Simon Fraser University, one from Calgary and another from Saskatchewan.
At the Western Age Class event, Reid also placed first in Juvenile girls 95 kg, and Klatt-Leblanc won for 75 kg school girls. Tiddler was second among the Cadet boys 130 kg competitors.
Zuback expects about 100 wrestlers in Grades 8 through 12 at the Island meet.
“A lot of our kids in the club are trying to peak and they’re hitting their mark right now which is good to see,” he said.
The top five boys and top six girls in each weight class advance to the provincials.