Chemainus Secondary School athletes are playing their part in the continued overall success of the Cowichan Valley Wrestling Club.
Six Chemainus competitors were among the huge crowd of 214 wrestlers during the 13th annual Cougar Invitational meet at the Chemainus Secondary gym. They all made the most of their familiar territory.
International level wrestler Hannah Tuplin, who has represented Canada many times, was in fine form again to win the 52-57 kilogram senior girls division.
“She dominated,” noted Cowichan Valley coach Nick Zuback, who’s seen many prolific performances from Tuplin over the years.
Her presence on the wrestling scene has helped bring more Chemainus students into the fold.
“It’s been great, her successes,” conceded Zuback. “Hosting the tournament there, too, has been helpful.
“Chemainus Secondary is great. We network with them – they help us out, we help them out.”
Joining Tuplin from Chemainus in girls competition were the Reid sisters – Emily and Elizabeth – as well as Rosie Klatt-Leblanc and Chloe Siddals.
Emily Reid finished first in the 95 kg division, Elizabeth Reid placed second in 84-88 kg, Klatt-Leblanc topped the 76-82 kg field and Siddals took the runner-up spot for 58-63 kg junior girls.
The lone Chemainus Secondary boy entered, Luther Tiddler, was second in the 118-129 kg heavyweights after a hard-fought victory in his opening match. “He was super excited,” noted Zuback.
Chemainus proved to be the ideal site for the event, with wrestlers from all over the Island converging here.
“It’s a great venue,” praised Zuback. “It’s got great seating and we can put one mat up at the top.”
Three mats in the main gym and one in the multi-purpose room for the younger wrestlers were going non-stop during the day.
“It’s a good feeling when you put something on and it’s a success,” enthused Zuback.
The previous week, Chemainus Secondary won the girls division in the Island Novice Meet at Campbell River.
Individually, Tiddler was tops in the junior boys 117 kg and Emily Reid in the junior girls 88-94 kg. Siddals and Klatt-Leblanc both came second in their respective classes and Elizabeth Reid wound up fourth in her division.
Visits by wrestling coach Eric Anderson to P.E. classes has helped fuel the interest in the sport in Chemainus and he’ll be doing more of the same in the new year.
Chemainus will also be the venue for the Island championships Feb. 16 with weigh-ins and Feb. 17, 2018 for competition. “It’ll be exciting,” predicted Zuback.