Mountain View wrestling may return
BY KEVIN WOODRUFF
Mountain Viewgraduate Kenny Decker is in the midst of trying to get Eagle wrestling back on the mats.
The 2003 grad and former wrestler has been running a club team since last year, and has approached the school board with a plan to restore a junior high program at the school.
Last year, Decker had eight wrestlers in grades seven through nine competing, and with several sixth graders this year showing interest, he believes he can field a team of 15 to 20 wrestlers at the junior high level next year.
Decker said he is taking the process one step at a time, and is trying to get as many students and parents involved as possible.
After approaching the school board at a meeting last month, high school principal Andrew Doster made several inquiries about what it would take to get the program up and running.
One major expense would be a new wrestling mat, asMountain View’s old mat, which is more than 20 years old, is in a state of disrepair.
At last week’s school board meeting, Doster told board members that a new mat would cost approximately $9,000.
In his spare time, Decker serves as a PIAA wrestling official, and said there is no way that Mountain View’s current mat would meet guidelines.
“The mat has holes in it,” Decker said. “And as a referee myself, it would never meet safety standards.”
Doster also noted at the meeting that next year would likely be an exhibition season for the Eagles should the program be reintroduced.
Mountain Viewcurrently runs an elementary school wrestling program with around 20 students involved, but with no high school program, the numbers have been dropping.
Last year, anotherMountain Viewgraduate, Chaz Ross, helped Decker with the program.
Decker said one of his goals is to just get kids to come to practices.
“I want to show them how we run practices, and teach them more about the sport,” Decker said. “A lot of kids don’t want to join because they think the sport is too hard.”
Decker’s ultimate goal is to restore varsity wrestling atMountain View, but will settle for a junior high program to start.
“I hope to at least get something started,” Decker said.
However, Decker said he is planning to hold fundraisers and ask for donations to possibly offset some of the costs of the program.
“I know the budget is going to be a big issue,” Decker said. “That’s why I want to try and help out as much as I can.”
He is hoping to drum up interest around the sport, and get talented athletes atMountain Viewinvolved.
“I know there are some really good athletes atMountain View,” Decker said. “I just need to find them.”
Decker said he is hoping to restore the excitement and tradition aroundMountain View’s program, which used to be a dominating force in District II.
“I’m not sure why kids aren’t as interested in wrestling as they used to be,” Decker said. “But I’m hoping to bring it back.”
Currently, Decker is waiting on aresponseMountain ViewSchoolBoard, but once he knows which direction to take he plans on holding meetings with students toward to end of the school year.
Anyone who wants more information about the program email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 862-3861