Filling up the wrestling room

By Kevin Eckleberry

June 9, 2014

They broke the new wrestling room at Unity Elementary School in on Monday.

More than 100 wrestlers representing six schools took part in the opening day of the LaGrange High wrestling camp.

The camp is being held at Unity Elementary, which will serve as the home base for the LaGrange wrestling team next season.

The Grangers had used the gym at Cannon Street Elementary School as their wrestling room the past few seasons, but they were asked to move to a difficult location for the 2014-2015 season.

Last week, everything was moved from Cannon Street to Unity, and by the time the wrestlers showed up Monday morning, everything was in place and ready to go.

The camp, which is in its sixth year, will run through Thursday, and the wrestlers will be in the wrestling room from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. each day, with one hour set aside for lunch.

The schools participating include LaGrange, Hardaway, Heard County, Cedartown, Pike County and Dublin.

“It’s a good turnout,” LaGrange coach Scooter Weathers said. “Last year we were down a little bit (numbers wise). This year it’s back up.”

Outside of the dip in 2013, Weathers said it has “grown every year. It’s gotten bigger and bigger.”

Weathers is being helped out by two of his friends in the coaching business.

The first two days, Bremen coach Nick White will be the primary instructor, and on Wednesday and Thursday, Northgate’s Adrian Anderson will step in and show the wrestlers the ropes.

“They do a lot of stuff high-school wise that the kids can use,” Weathers said. “It’s stuff that works. Adrian has won several state championships, Nick has won several state championships. What they do works.”

Weathers said there will be a different area of focus each day of the camp, and on Thursday, some time will be set aside for matches.

“Thursday, we’ll come in and have drills and stuff, and then we’ll wrestle live for like the last three hours,” Weathers said.

White has been helping out with the camp for the past few years, and he enjoys any chance to teach the sport that means so much to him.

“I love the sport. It’s the best sport on the planet,” he said. “This sport, there’s nothing like it. It teaches you responsibility. With football, you’ve got somebody to block for you.”

In wrestling, “it’s just you,” White said.

White said that one of the things he tries to get across to wrestlers is the importance of not taking any short cuts.

“You either put the time in, or you don’t,” he said. “Sometimes you’ll wrestle someone who is going to wrestle in college. He’s amazing. You work your tail off, but you’re not at that level. But sometimes you’re going to lose. You keep working.”