Grant Coulthart (74kg Boys) competes in the elementary division at the Cougar Invitational in Chemainus. SUBMITTED PHOTO

Alberni wrestlers bring home hardware from Chemainus

Alberni has a strong showing at Cougar Invitational

Wrestlers from Alberni District Secondary School and junior members of the Alberni Wrestling Club travelled to Chemainus to compete in the Cougar Invitational on Saturday, Dec. 9. The tournament featured wrestlers from all over the Island. ADSS finished first in the Senior Division (grades 10-12), second in the Junior Division (grades 7-9) and second in the Elementary Division (grades 3-6).

As predicted, the ADSS Armada won the Senior Division in convincing fashion. Ravi Manhas (48kg Boys), Owen Spencer (62kg Boys), Isaac McDonald (67kg Boys), Aaron Badovinac (77kg Boys), and Paige Maher (74kg Girls) all went undefeated to claim gold medals in their respective divisions.

Daniel Spencer (77kg Boys) and Seth Price (57kg Boys) both finished second in their weight classes behind returning national and provincial medalists. Duncan McLeod (48 Boys), Darien Van Ingen (57 Boys), Jayden Iversen (77kg Boys) and Anna Frost (57 Girls) all finished with bronze medals. Phillip Broadbent finished fourth in the 77 kilogram Boys Division.

“For the first tournament of the year I thought we did pretty well,” said ADSS head coach John McDonald. “Paige Maher and Ravi Manhas both had big wins over nationally and provincially ranked wrestlers. Ravi’s was a come from behind win which impressed me. A few of our gold medalists didn’t get pushed too hard today. It is sometimes hard for me to really gauge their conditioning and technique if they aren’t pushed. The competition will be a little deeper and a little tougher when we compete on the mainland and I am interested to see how we have developed when we square off against more provincially ranked kids in Burnaby next weekend.”

The Armada had a number of up and coming wrestlers compete in the Junior division, finishing second behind the home town team Queen of Angels. Bobby McKenzie (40 kg Boys), Cooper Day (45kg Boys), Landyn Clayton (73kg Boys), Mason Bodnar (89kg Boys), and Malika McDonald (40kg Girls) all looked solid, bringing home the gold medals in their weight classes.

Ezra Frost (48kg Boys), Wyatt Young (52kg Boys), Ryann Tramer (73kg Boys) each lost only one match to finish second in their respective weight classes. Brenden Iversen (51kg Boys), Cole Robinson (65kg Boys), Austin Caton (67kg Boys), and Austin Kasten (73kg Boys) also brought home hardware by claiming the bronze medals in their weight classes. Jake Dentoom rounded out the placings with a fourth place finish in the 81 kilogram division.

ADSS Junior Varsity coach Russ Bodnar offered the following assessment: “Our junior kids did well. We are seeing results from those kids who are coming out to practices and have moved up with through our development programs at elementary and ADSS. I am a little biased, but I thought my son Mason looked really solid today and had some nice throws. I really hope we can keep all these kids coming out. I would love to see a little more depth especially with our girls.”

In addition to the strong contingent of wrestlers from ADSS, a handful of Junior Club wrestlers travelled to Chemanius to compete. Three Grade 7s had ADSS coaches excited about their recruits for next year. Evan McLeod finished first in the boys 38 kilogram division, Jackie-Lynn Croft finished second (82kg Girls) and Caitlyn Baker finished third in a tough 55 kilogram girls division.

Alberni’s results in the elementary division were equally impressive. Alex McKenzie (37kg Boys), Jax Robinson (47kg Boys) and Grant Coulthart (74kg Boys) impressed coaches, finishing first in their divisions. Daymien Johnson (2nd 26kg Boys), Bruce Williams (2nd 58kg Boys), Hussein Omo (3rd 31 kg Boys), Janna Hiltz (3rd 33kg Girls), and Mariella Huebner (3rd 45kg Girls) all competed well in one of their first out of town tournaments.

ADSS wrestlers will be training hard in preparation for the War On the Floor Tournament in Burnaby this week.

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