DUBLIN, IRELAND — A group of wrestlers representing the Trinity Bay area were up to the task when it came to competing at a weekend competition in Ireland.
The Trinity Bay Wrestling Club sent 13 wrestlers to the Irish Open Freestyle Wrestling Championships. Hosted by the Irish Amateur Wrestling Association, the event attracted athletes from the Czech Republic, Latvia, Norway, Poland, Scotland, England, and other countries, representing 26 teams in all.
The team collected 12 medals at the one-day event held Nov. 25 — four gold, five silver and three bronze. Coach Peter Petipas told The Compass he was proud of everyone that competed.
“Some of the kids had way tougher (weight classes) than other kids,” said Petipas, who also competed at the event. “The Polish teams and Latvian teams especially were ridiculously overmatching everyone pretty well ... They were monsters to say the least. The Latvian coach himself, I think he was 320 pounds and about 6'5”, so (he) was a bit intimidating, let alone the actual wrestlers he brought over.”
Ultimately, he felt everyone did well, indicating too there were some who performed even better than anticipated on the mats.
Petipas described the experience as a chance for young athletes to compete and observe how wrestlers trained in other countries approach matches. But it wasn't all about sports, of course, as the group did plenty of sightseeing. Among the highlights were visits to the historic Kilmainham Gaol (a decommissioned prison converted into a museum), Dublin Castle and the Dublinia museum.
“The kids got a lot of educational value out of it as well,” said Petipas.
A visit to Christ Church Cathedral — Dublin's oldest medieval cathedral — was particularly fortuitous, as they got to ring the bells for Sunday mass.
“The kids all had a blast,” said Petipas.
The Trinity Bay Wresting Team trains at Whitbourne Elementary.
Trinity Bay Wresting results in Ireland:
• Gold — Owen Warren, Jordan Pitcher, Alex Tilley, Logan Drover
• Silver — Josh Cumby, Rudi Smith, Anthony Johnson, Julianna Murphy, Brandon Mercer
• Bronze — Emily Temple, Steve Noseworthy and Peter Petipas
• Fourth — Kyle March
NOTE: Tilley and Murphy, recent Canada Games athletes, are not members of the club.