Watch Wrestling Online- Watch WWE, Raw, Smackdown Live

Area wrestling teams set to begin practices on Monday


Area wrestling teams set to begin practices on Monday


REED CITY – Wrestling practices start today, but like with any sport during the COVID pandemic, athletes will need to make some adjustments.

As in volleyball, multi-team invitationals will not be allowed. Wrestling events can’t have more than four teams.

“I am so happy for our student-athletes that they will be able to compete this season,” Reed City coach Roger Steig said. “It was up in the air for a long time whether we would be able to have a season due to the contact in our sport. We will practice as always after school in the wrestling room. Because of the size of our room we may find ourselves going in shifts.

“Because of the nature of our sport our athletes have been unable to do much in the off-season, except for conditioning. Everyone was faced with the same handicaps due to the COVID, so I don’t see it being an advantage or disadvantage to anyone.”

Steig acknowledged the season is going to present challenges galore.

“It will be far from the normal and a new learning experience for all involved,” Steig said. “The face masks may bring some special challenges by themselves. It will take some adapting to. It will have to be closely monitored for restricting breathing. I do expect to see a lot more time outs because of them. We’ll have to deal with it in a safe cautious manner.

“Without the mask, we would not have a season so I am confident our athletes will adjust and we will enjoy the season. This year, we are being limited to half the matches as past season over the same course of time. I do expect there may be some circumstances that will come up that will cause even fewer matches for some. I do think we will have a complete season with some restrictions.”

Reed City, for instance, only has seven dates on its schedule. None are open invitationals.

Ben Bryant is the wrestling coach at Evart.

“I am hoping that we can proceed with the season as planned,” Bryant said. “Surely, there will be some hiccups along the way, but we will deal with them as they come. With our football team having great success this postseason, and most of our wrestlers playing football, we are going to have a late start to our season.

“Luckily, most of our wrestlers have been able to stay in shape during the extended football season. We have a close link between our two programs and were able to combine COVID protocol practices this summer. A few of our guys usually wrestle in tournaments throughout the summer and this year they were not able to get in the extra work on the mat. I’m sure some rust will be shown in the early season due to this.”

Wrestlers, like all other athletes, will have to be careful.

“I’m just hoping that everyone is smart about their travel and communications over winter break,” Bryant said. “I know the holidays means that many of our guys will be seeing family from all over.

“The facemask situation will be difficult at first, but kids adapt quickly. After the first week or so, it will be just another piece of equipment.”

It wouldn’t surprise Bryant if there are some midseason interruptions.

“I am fairly confident that at some time throughout the season we will have some time off,” Bryant said.