It wasn’t just a day at the beach for the dozens of competitors who made their way to South Shore’s Baldwin Beach last month for South Tahoe Wrestling’s beach wrestling championships.
The late-July tournament celebrated its third year this summer, and had 117 participants take to the sand to grapple with the best. The tournament was also the culminating event for South Tahoe High’s summer wrestling camp. The tournament featured wrestlers from California, Nevada, Utah, Arizona, Oregon, Washington, and Illinois.
One of the event coordinators, Ryan Wallace, also coaches the South Tahoe High wrestlers. He said the event has gained more participants each year, and it’s a great way to keep his athletes on top of their game in preparation of wrestling season.
“We are a goal-oriented program; this week allowed us to check three goals off the list,” Wallace said. “Double the tournament size, increase the skill level of our athletes, and strengthen the bonds of our wrestling family.”
According to Wallace, the 2016 tournament had 55 wrestlers competing. This year, due to higher water levels, the event was moved from its previous location at Lakeview Commons Beach to Baldwin Beach. The tournament brought in some accomplished instructors, including head instructor Jason Welch. He was a Big 10 champion wrestler at Northwestern University and an NCAA finalist.
The local talent was in full force at the tournament as well, having several athletes place in their respective divisions. There were 20 divisions based on age and weight class. The older athletes were placed in an 18-foot, regulation size circle to compete in, and the younger athletes were placed…
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