Sharon R Grooms Steven L Wootten Forest J McDaniel Ralph O Grooms Adams County teenager dies in auto accident Charles N Vance Wesley M Baldwin James Kennedy Tom A Mihalovich Brand hat trick leads North Adams past West Union 5-2 in SHAC soccer action Senior Profile: Bryant Lung Lady Hounds pull off thrilling Senior Night win Volleyball milestones continue to pile up at North Adams Banner season for Lady Indians soccer SHAC holds Junior High Volleyball Tournament Tournament match ups set for volleyball and soccer Senior Profile: Morgan Edmisten Hounds dominate, improve to 3-4 Is this not the best time of the year? Volley For The Cure is another big success Getting everything we ask for Oh, that dreaded leaf project Manchester: Adams County’s oldest community looks to the future with hope Congressman visits Manchester’s newest business Six candidates vie for MLSD School Board Highway 41 road work stalls MFD holds annual Safety Day for kids, families Lenora Mckee Virgie Cole Helen J Damron Karen S Lockhart Donna M Pelfrey Russell D Pollitt, Sr Karen S Lockhart Harris named Director of Shelter for the Homeless Local candidates abundant on November ballot Senior Profile: McKinlee Grooms Lady Dragons finish third in district golf tourney Lady Devils challenged, but survive to extend SHAC streak to 60 Rally falls short, Lady Hounds fall in five sets to Fairfield Senior Profile: Jessica Newman Lady Indians get shutout win over West Union, 2-0 Erwins host annual Herb Fair Bentonville: A community at the crossroads of Adams County history Tranquility, Wilson Homestead host annual Heritage Days Why we get back up Your local newspaper, the real deal Welcome to the morning klatch Oleda F Saunders Frank A Golden Shirley A Tully Hubert Knauff John T Shupert Celebrate the sports pages Gould, Woolard, defense lead Hounds to second win George E Lucas Betty A Johnson Hayes sentenced Sue Day Devils headed back to state golf tourney Earl R Fields Alberta L Steward Gregory Terry Linda Taylor Levies slated for November ballot Manchester residents forming neighborhood watch group West Union teachers receive prestigious award Crum arraigned in Brown County Common Pleas Court Seaman: A small town with a big heart and a family spirit Seaman Fall Festival again draws large crowds NAES participates in weekend food program AES Ohio Generation assumes control of DP&L assets West Union, Peebles take home county XC crowns Lady Devils win a soccer buzzer-beater Senior Profile: Brooklyn Wylie Lady Dragons move to districts Green Devils win sectional golf title West Union hosting fourth annual Alumni Volleyball Game Gray breaks Lady Indians’ single season goals record Senior Profile: Chase Cummings Lady Dragons cruise to SHAC title Hupp ties school record with five goals in Lady Devils’ win over Southeastern For 14th time in 15 years, Dragons claim SHAC Boys Golf Championship Getting life in order See those signals of the season Jury returns verdict in former Manchester police officer’s trial Larry Peters Gary L Hughes Sr Deanna L Parker Stephen R Fetters Bonnie Hawkins Clifton J DeMint Steven L Kimberlin When you just know The tradition of the Sunday dinner The emotions of leaving for college A hard habit to break Did it happen or did it not? Southern Ohio Trails Web Portal released Board of Elections announces polling place changes

Wrestling debuts in Adams County

Aden Wilson, right, from the Ohio Valley Wrestling club, works to get out of the grasp of his opponent under the watchful eye of Coach Michael Felts, left.

Program begins with Ohio Valley Wrestling Club –

Story by Mark Carpenter –
Photos by Jamie Puckett –

It was a different kind of sport that an estimated crowd of 120 people came to see on Jan. 31 at West Union High School, at least different in Adams County.  For the first time in county history, the gym floor at WUHS was covered with a wrestling mat and young wrestlers from Adams County and the Western Brown School District squared off.
The Tuesday night meet was the home debut for the Ohio Valley Wrestling Club, a three-year old group formed by West Union High School Art teacher Michael Felts, who currently is instructing students in grades one through seven in the sport of wrestling.  The club currently has over 20 members and is open to any student in the county, not just those of West Union.
Felts himself is well-qualified to begin the building of this new program, with an extensive wrestling background of his own.
“I have been wrestling since I was 10 years old,” said Felts.  “I wrestled Pee-Wee, junior high, and high school at New Richmond and then had a small college stint at Mount St. Joseph as a collegiate wrestler until I blew my shoulder out.  I then jumped into coaching around 1998 with Cincinnati Turpin for seven years, went to Glen Este for about nine years or so, took a couple of years off, and then decided to start this program out here.”
Three years ago, Felts put the idea of a wrestling club out there to see how many kids might be interested in the sport.  There was a pretty decent interest and Felts contacted ACOVSD Board member Charlie Bess to get her thoughts.
“Mrs. Bess kind of wanted me to start ASAP and so I began with grades one through five on Tuesday nights, with 22 kids signed up the first year.  Last year I retained 16 of those first 22 and we practiced on Mondays and Wednesdays and added fifth and sixth graders, who have evolved into seventh graders this year.  Next year we will have grades one through six again with a full seventh and eighth grade junior high.  My hope is that by the 2018-19 school year, the sport will be school affiliated at the high school level.”

Ethan Liston, right, from the Ohio Valley Wrestling Club has his arm raised in victory in last week’s meet held at West Union High School.

”It was great to see the boys and girls at the first county wrestling match,” said Board member Bess.  “The program continues to grow and offers another option for students who want to be part of a team and develop their own skills to compete individually as well.  It is great to see another program that serves our students.  It helps develop self-confidence and commitment and we have some amazing student-athletes.  Mr. Felts is doing a great job with this program.”
“Our first match ever was at Western Brown and we won one of 19 matches,” says Felts when asked about the progress his program is making.  “Two years later we host Western Brown and we win seven of 16 matches, so I think our progress is very, very good.”
“Youth wrestling takes place on Sundays and we have been placing a lot of our kids each Sunday, traveling to places like Western Brown, Milford, and New Richmond, established high schools with established Pee-Wee wrestling programs and tournaments.”
The amazing thing about this program is that Felts, as a volunteer, is handling all these coaching duties himself, running his junior high program five days a week with Saturday tournaments.  Then he jumps to Monday and Wednesday and all day Sunday with the youth program.
“When this gets to become a high school sport, I will need another coach to step up and take the junior high program over,” says Felts.
Felts came from a tough background which wrestling helped him escape and he sees the same thing happening with many of the kids in his program.

Lylah Adams of the Ohio Valley Wrestling Club grapples with her opponent during the meet held on Jan. 31 at West Union High School.

“These kids deal with being adopted, being from single-parent homes, or whatever their hardship is and they can come in here and they can control their aggression,” adds Felts.  “The sport is really catching on with girls too and currently we have one girl at the middle school level and two at the youth level.”
The 2016-17 roster for the Ohio Valley Wrestling Club includes: First Graders- Michael Calvin, Jase Morgan, and Lylah Adams; Second Graders- Branson Pritchett, Bryson Francis, Kelden Copas, Colton Adams, Colton Abner, and Peyton Abner; Third Graders- Brylee Mills, Derrian Smith, and Colten Richards; Fourth Graders- Ryken Copas, Lane Marshall, and Owen Davis; Fifth Graders- Shauna Thatcher, Ethan Cantrell, Ethan Liston, and Aden Wilson; Seventh Graders- Thomas Arthon, Shaman Light, Celina Nickell, and Corey Rigdon.
You can follow the progress of the club on their Ohio Valley Wrestling Club Facebook page.

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