It is time for wrestlers to dust off those wrestling shoes and head to practice because the wrestling season has begun.
The Grizzlies will be trained this year by head coach Martin Kouyoumtjian and assistant coaches Rich Lambie, Jose Leon, Chris Sides, and Josh Sides.
“To tell you the truth, this is the most talented wrestling team Granite Hills has ever seen,” said coach Kouyoumtjian.
The Grizzlies have many veterans returning from the previous season, which include two East Yosemite League Champions: seniors Raul Mata and Martin Ayala.
There are also many others who have placed one or more times in the EYL tournament and wrestled in the Yosemite Divisional Playoffs: seniors Jairo Madrigal, Basilio Arroyo, Phillip Cortez, Tyler Jones, and junior Danny Jacuinde.
Others who are expected to make an impact on the team are sophomores Saul Samano and Jose Gonzalez, who both had an outstanding freshman season on varsity.
From the incoming freshman class, coach Kouyoumtjian has heard quite a bit about Ruben Arreola and Salvador Coronel and expects to see these two boys start off their first Grizzly wrestling season strong.
“What can I say; I am working with a lot of potential and talent, but not too much pressure because we just keep breaking new ground and blazing a trail of Grizzly success,” stated coach Kouyoumtjian.
The Grizzly coaches are riled up for the upcoming season, which has a bit to do with having the opportunity to host the East Yosemite League tournament at home this year.
“I enjoy the intensity that wrestling brings because I have to work hard every day,” stated wrestler Mario Madrigal. “I enjoy competing and challenging myself.”
The Grizzlies are returning with a strong reputation from last year due to their first win over their cross-town rival, the Monache Maruaders.
This year, coach Kouyoumtjian believes the team has a better chance at beating the Marauders again, and, possibly, the other cross-town rival and state ranked team, the Porterville Panthers.
“I think this is possible if everyone is on board. EYL at home will be phenomenal,” mentioned coach Kouyoumtjian.
Practices began on Monday, Nov. 14 and they take place every weekday after school and occasionally on the weekends.
For those interested in wrestling, talk to coach Kouyoumtjian any day after school in the wrestling room.
Above Photo: Two wrestlers preparing for the season.(Photo By Sheng Lor)