Fielding a fledgling wrestling team in its second year, Mission Secondary took seven of its wrestlers to the 30th annual Port Alberni Invitational tournament Feb. 7-9 and came home with four gold medals.
"I was ecstatic when our two schoolgirls earned a plaque for third place, with two gold medals," said coach Jared Derksen.
Two Grade 8 girls, Alexia Seal and Shalaya Valenzuela, had dominant performances, both winning gold and a plaque for third place team in the schoolgirl division.
Grade 10 wrestler Satvir Bhullar earned a pin in his gold medal match while first year Grade 7 wrestler Jae-dyn Reisig pinned all of his opponents, and earned a gold medal in a pool of eight wrestlers.
"Individually, I'm very proud of what the wrestlers have accomplished," added the coach.
Derksen started the wrestling program as MSS about five years ago, but then moved it to elementary schools for three years before coming back to Mission Secondary last year.
"Many teams, like Port Alberni's or Abbotsford's have 30-50 wrestlers. We can't compete with teams for overall points, because it's based on sheer numbers," said Derk-sen, who's hoping to build the Roadrunners program in the years to come.
The entire Mission Secondary team did outstanding, with a win-loss record of over 70 per cent he added.
One disappointment was for Grade 9 first-year wrestler Meghan Belhumeur, who did not make it to the final round - she broke her collarbone in her second match, after winning her first match with a second-round pin.