Contact sports face special challenges to restart in the COVID-19 era

The nature of some sports dictates that hard contact isn’t going to ease up, so it will be up to COVID-19 testers to be gatekeepers of sorts. And that might not be enough to keep seasons viable.

Football players ram into each other to begin a play and usually end it with a collision that brings a ball carrier to the ground.

Hockey players pin each other against the boards with body checks and use any physical means necessary to separate an opponent from the puck.

Wrestlers square off inches apart, then almost immediately grab arms, bump heads and exert themselves in face-to-face contact, often breathing the same air for six minutes or more.

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, public health officials have stressed social distancing to combat the deadly virus, which is largely spread through infected droplets from coughing, sneezing and talking. But for contact sports, social distancing isn’t a workable option. Continue reading at startribune.com

Ponce Trained – In Wrestling and In Life

Before high school, Orlando Ponce wasn’t going down the best path. When introduced to wrestling, his path started going in a positive direction. After high school, when he thought wrestling was out of his life, Ponce began to go down some troubling roads again. Wrestling would get re-introduced into his life, and he has never looked back.

“My high school coach and the people who influenced me through wrestling,” Ponce said, “if not for them, I would be in a much different situation.”

Now, Ponce has devoted his life to influencing kids through his faith and through wrestling.

Ponce didn’t grow up in a wrestling hotbed.

“I was born in Nicaragua and was raised in South Florida. It was not a big wrestling community. I got a later start in wrestling. My brother started wrestling but dropped out of high school. He encouraged one of my other brothers to wrestle. This brother was a state champion and went on to wrestle for Lock Haven in Pennsylvania. I was a ninth-grader when he was a senior. My brother encouraged me to wrestle.”

Continue readingPonce Trained – In Wrestling and In Life

An Evolving Culture of Wrestling – Kasson-Mantorville

Regardless of the sport, coaches understand the importance of developing a culture for their particular activity. The wrestling program in Kasson-Mantorville is no different. Although the wrestling culture was growing when future head coach Jamie Heidt joined the staff, he helped accelerate that culture. Now, the KoMets are one of the best programs in Minnesota.

Heidt grew up in a state rich in wrestling culture - Iowa.

The sport of wrestling was first introduced to Heidt by one of his middle school teachers, who happened to be the high school coach at the time.

“He was a great promoter of wrestling. He would see us in the hallway and encouraged us to come out for wrestling. From youth wrestling to high school, I had great coaches that made wrestling fun, and it was a great sport to be part of,” Heidt said.

Success on the mat didn’t come early for Heidt, but he was in a good atmosphere to develop his love for the sport. He grew up in a small town – Humboldt, Iowa. The town was rich in wrestling history and was the hometown of Frank Gotch – a true pioneer in the sport of wrestling. Heidt continued to develop as a wrestler in a community and state that has a deep passion for this sport.

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Former Adrian wrestler and son of Adrian wrestling coach dies in boating crash on Lake Shetek

CURRIE – An Adrian man died over the weekend after a pleasure craft was hit by a fishing boat on Lake Shetek Saturday evening.

According to the Murray County Sheriff’s Office, 22-year-old Logan Nelson’s body was found shortly before noon Sunday. Nelson, of Adrian, was one of 11 occupants of a boat that was struck shortly after 8 p.m. Saturday by a fishing boat piloted by Brian Bergling, who was the only occupant of the 2018 Tracker. Continue reading at www.myradioworks.net

College Recruiting: Fuenffinger transferring from Rochester CTC to Minnesota State

Francis Fuenffinger is transferring from Rochester Community and Technical College to Minnesota State University Mankato next season. He was a three-time state qualifier for Hibbing, graduating in 2019.

Continue readingCollege Recruiting: Fuenffinger transferring from Rochester CTC to Minnesota State