Hometown Heroes

Warrior wrestling team honors military members, defeats Shelby 35-32

REMUS — People being thrown down and screaming isn’t a part of your typical high school assembly.

That’s what went on Friday at Chippewa Hills during the “Hometown Heroes” assembly where the school honored the armed services while the varsity wrestling team beat Shelby, 35-32.

SHOWDOWN: Chippewa Hills’ Kevin Briscoe (left) stares down his opponent during a dual meet against Shelby at Chippewa Hills High School on Friday. The meet was part of Chippewa Hills’ “Hometown Heroes” event, as the Warriors honored members of the armed forces while also raising money and collecting care packages to send to Chippewa Hills graduates who are serving in the military. (Pioneer photo/Kristopher Lodes)

SHOWDOWN: Chippewa Hills’ Kevin Briscoe (left) stares down his opponent during a dual meet against Shelby at Chippewa Hills High School on Friday. The meet was part of Chippewa Hills’ “Hometown Heroes” event, as the Warriors honored members of the armed forces while also raising money and collecting care packages to send to Chippewa Hills graduates who are serving in the military. (Pioneer photo/Kristopher Lodes)

The Warriors (5-1) led through the first nine of 14 matches with their biggest lead being 23-11 after Eric Russell recorded a pin in the 189 weight class.

The Tigers (2-2) would use a 4-2 win, a pin and an 18-16 overtime win in the 103 weight class to tie the dual at 23-23.

But Chippewa Hills answered with back-to-back pins by 112-pounder Kaden Ellis and 119-pounder Zach King to take a 35-23 lead.

Shelby needed to record back-to-back pins and it got one in the final match at the 130 weight class. Shelby even won the previous match at the 125 weight class, but it wasn’t a pin, giving the Warriors the win.

“We’re competitive, we’re tough, we’ll fight,” said Chippewa Hills coach Nate Ethridge. “We knew if we had a decent lead going into 119, we were real confident in Zach (King), a returning two-time state placer for us. He is a tough kid, so we knew we could count on bonus points.

“Kaden Ellis has had a pretty nice year for us, he’s 6-0 and has gotten bonus points in almost every match,” he added.

The assembly aspect has been in the making for quite some time and after competing in a similar event last season, the idea took off.

“We’ve always wanted to do an assembly dual,” Ethridge said. “We wrestled last year at Hartland, so we had an opportunity to be involved in one. We’ve talked about it for about four years and my wife (athletics director Chi Ethridge) ran with it.”

Hartland’s assembly dual was for the Wounded Warriors Project. Chippewa Hills used the same idea, but with a twist of hometown flavor.

CHHS will be donating 30 care packages and raised around $400 that will go to graduates of the school who are serving in the United States and overseas.

“We put our own spin on it because we wanted to touch those who are a part of the Chip Hills family,” Chi said. “We started off getting names of those we knew who were veterans and active members and as we started asking around the list started growing.

“Once we got the names of all the active members, we asked 5-12 graders to bring in care package items or they could bring in dollars. We are putting in snacks, wrestling t-shirts, football sweatshirts … just a bunch of Chip Hills gear.”

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Posted by Kris Lodes

Kris is a freelance contributor for the sports department at the Pioneer. He specializes in prep sports coverage in Mecosta and Osceola counties. He can be reached at klodes@pioneergroup.com or by phone at (231)592-8363.

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