By Erin Beck
Despite lack of a middle school wrestling team this year or a youth program in town, Shinnston kids did well in tournaments Jan. 15-16.
Saturday was the 9th annual Tony Williams Memorial Tournament, hosted by Grafton Wrestling Club at Grafton High School. Sunday was the Braxton County Youth Open Tournament.
Local mom Nickii Glaspell provided more information. She said Shinnston kids who placed included:
- River Miker, who placed 1st at Grafton
- Nick Glaspell, who placed second at Grafton and 1st at Braxton
- Bearett Miker, who placed 2nd at Grafton
- Ryan Skinner, who placed 2nd at Grafton
- Toby Prangler, who placed 3rd at Grafton.
- Silas Raines, who placed 4th at Grafton and 4th at Braxton
- Cameron Glaspell, who placed fourth at Braxton
Glaspell said the middle school can’t find a coach, so her husband Cody took classes and plans to apply to coach next year. She reached out hoping to spread the word that there could be a local middle school team next year.
Four nights a week, they drive their kids to practice for the Clarksburg Panthers. She noted that some parents can’t do that.
Glaspell said her sons Nick, a sixth grader at Lincoln Middle School and Cameron, a third grader at Big Elm Elementary School both participated. She said it seems like a “switch flipped” with her oldest son last weekend, who has recently improved significantly after wrestling for four to five years.
Nick, who weighs 93 pounds, competed in the 12u (11- and 12-year-olds) 100-pound weight class “so he could have some competition,” his mom said, as well as the 95lb middle-school bracket at Grafton High School. He placed 2nd in the middle school division and 3rd in the 100-pound regular division. For the day Nick went 6-2.
Cameron Glaspell wrestles 8u (7- and 8-year-olds) 70 pounds, and he went 3-2 but didn’t place.
Sunday, they wrestled in Braxton County. Nick wrestled in the 12u 100-pound weight class and went 3-0 and placed first place. Cameron wrestled 8u 70-pound and went 3-2 and placed 4th.
Glaspell has an appreciation for the support because she notices that even if her kids lose, they learn something from each event, like how they could have gotten out of their opponent’s winning move. The sport gives them structure, routine and helps them stay in shape, she said. It also teaches them to appreciate discipline, because it helps them reach a desired goal.
“They probably don’t admit it,” she said, “but I think they like the discipline that’s there because they learn.”
She said multiple Shinnston kids wrestle for Clarksburg and Bridgeport teams, including: Toby Prangler, 2nd grade at Big Elm Elementary school, Silas Raines, 5th grader at Big Elm Elementary school, Ryan Skinner, a 5th grader at Big Elm Elementary school, Roman Skinner, a 2nd grader at Big Elm Elementary school, Issac Elliott, a 5th grader at Big Elm Elementary School, Ashton Bailey, a 4th grader at Big Elm Elementary School, Casey Pumphrey, a 2nd grader at Lumberport Elementary School, Jace Poe, a 5th grader at Big Elm Elementary School, Colton Hyre, a kindergartner at Lumberport Elementary School, River Miker, a 2nd grader at Big Elm Elementary School, and Bearett Miker, who is in pre-k at Big Elm Elementary School.
Raines, Skinner and Skinner wrestle for Bridgeport’s youth team, while the rest wrestle with Clarksburg.
This story has been corrected to say the Glaspells wrestle for the Clarksburg Panthers.