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Young wrestlers taste success in Battle Creek



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Congratulations to Oxford’s youth wrestling program, which finished runner-up in the state competition held over the weekend. (click for larger version)
February 29, 2012 - The Oxford youth wrestling program had just as much success as the varsity wrestling program during their state meet this past weekend.

Wrestling in Battle Creek on Sunday, Feb. 26., the Oxford sixth-grade-and-under wrestling team finished as state runner-ups. They lost to Hartland in the finals.

"We had a great time," Coach Jeffrey Miller said. "Overall, they did what they needed to do to make a team successful, whether they were winning or holding an opponent down to the lowest points possible. Everyone on the team contributed to what we accomplished."

Miller said the team exceeded everyone's expectations during the tournament.

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"They came together as a team and got some great experience from the individual tournaments and team tournaments that we did," Miller said. "They got some great coaching at the youth club level and we just came in there with the attitude that we were going to try and accomplish as much as we could."

And accomplish they did. They defeated Grand Blanc and Holt pretty convincingly before getting a come-from-behind victory over Holly.

"I think the boys started to really believe in themselves," Miller said. "We just got a lot of momentum yesterday (Sunday) and things went really well...and then we ran into a strong Hartland team in the final round."

After losing to Holly the week before, Miller adjusted his line-up and saw it pay off.

The Wildcats qualified third in their regional tournament in order to make the state finals, which was held in New Lothrup, MI.

Miller said there are about 18-20 members of the team who wrestle in the Oxford Youth Wrestling Club.

"They are all sixth grade and under, so we have everything from a kindergartner and first grader all the way up to several sixth graders," Miller said. "There are 15 weight classes...they each fill a specific weight class."

At the high school level, there are only 14 weight classes.

According to Miller, each three minute period is one minute long, and they use the same scoring methods as the high school level.

Miller said he was thankful for the parents making the commitment to come to Battle Creek.

"We had to travel all the way to Battle Creek and spend the night, and it was a significant expense for everybody to take that on," he said. "It was a great experience in the end. It takes a lot of committment in the end from the parents and kids to do this kind of thing."

Andrew Moser is a staff writer for the Oxford Leader.
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