Wrestlers shine in Florida
By Clint Kern
ORLANDO – Recently a ridiculously talent rich collection of mid-Michigan grapplers were assembled onto the Michigan Gold Pit Bulls and they competed against elite wrestling teams from all over the country in Florida. They finished 19th out of 124 teams.
“I went 6-3 and earned All-American status with four pins. My best match was against a two time state champ from Pennsylvania and the Keystone Brawlers. I lost by two but I put up a good fight. It was a ton of fun. We had a fantasic team, nobody thought they were better than the other, it was an all around great group,” commented Sanford’s Joe Shuler. Joe was very thankful to all the coaches of the Pit Bulls, but especially Head Coach Darin Wass from Swan Valley and Devane Dodgens of Chip Hills, who’s basically Joe’s personal trainer.
“It was sweet seeing good wrestlers from all over and it was great competition. I was 6 and 4 and the toughest opponent was from South Dakota, he was really strong,” repiled Houghton Lake’s Dalton Bailey.
“My record was 5-4. There were a lot of tough kids and i definitely felt the pressure to win, considering I had such good team mates around me like Jake Roza who went 8-1. One match I was wrestling a real strong kid and it came down to the last few seconds and the reff made a bad call, but hey that’s what I get if I leave it to the ref,” said Sanford’s Eric Fader.
“All the wrestlers did good and some just fell into a tough weight class. I was very surprised at the skill level of each wrestler there. The complex was very impressive and the tournament was run smooth especially for how large it was. There were no slouches at any weight class,” noted Gladwin’s Jake Roza. “We all got to go around and get diffrent shirts and singlets from diffrent teams from all over the U. S. Also the night life was cool, we all got to hang out and have a good time and enjoy being in Flordia.”