Day 3 By Brian Herold

Day 3

By Brian Herold,

This morning I was excited, yet I still had butterflies in
my tummy. While we, as a team, were warming up. I started to realize that all
we had to do was trust our technique and our coaches. In the long run we all
were winners in knowledge. We all gained more experience and I gained even more
trust. The team did GREAT!

Day 2 by Hayden Stockwell

Western Regional 2011, Pocatello, Idaho

Today I woke up at about 8 o’clock and had breakfast. I had about an egg worth of scrambled eggs, and a small pancake. I ate so little so I can make weight of 112. After that, I went back to my hotel room and took a shower. When I got out, I checked my weight and it was 109 lbs. So then I went to the lobby and played some iPod games with Thomas, Marco, and Gavin. Later, we went back to my room and played some Texas Hold ’em with the deck of cards and clay poker chips I got for Christmas. Marco, Thomas, and I then left to Thomas and Marco’s room across the hotel and played with Thomas’ new iPad. In the middle of us playing, Dallas came in and grabbed Marco so he could give him a haircut. Then Thomas’ parents came after they went shopping. Some of the teammates like me, Thomas, Joe, Jon, Madison, Allison, Preston, Tye, and more unloaded the truck and put the groceries in Thomas’ room. After we finished, I tried to go my room by going through the back door, but I needed a key. So I had to go through the front door that goes to the lobby. About 6 minutes later, I got to my room and had a banana. I decided to go outside and play some football. Coach Jess walked by and said we were having a meeting before we left for weigh ins. We talked about money management and being wise about it and respecting people and representing the team and ourselves. When we got to the Holt Arena at Idaho State University, I checked my weight and jogged with Kody, Marco, and the new Austin make weight. I got my new gear for the tournament. It had a t-shirt, a pair of shorts, a cool Asics bag, and two awesome singlets. One of them was blue that showed a mountain with snow, and the other with a mountain with fire on it which was the red one. I then got my weight slips and went to the line to get my skin checked and to get weighed in. I weighed 105.6 lbs, I think I should of done more running before so I could possibly go to the 105 lbs bracket. When I left, Team Oregon had a big barbecue with plenty of hot dogs and hamburgers. We then got back to the hotel and went to another meeting. This time, it was about not pushing first year wrestlers on cutting weight, so they won’t hurt themselves and so they would enjoy the experience of wrestling. We also talked about staying healthy for tomorrow. After the meeting, Gavin, my dad, Kody, his dad, Jon, and I went to the convenient store and got some snacks really fast, and was able to make it to our room by curfew. Over all, it was a really good day. I’m a little bit nervous about tomorrow, but I know that I will do alright. All I have to do is to try my hardest, and rely on what I’ve learned in the Pitt. I’ll win a few matches and hopefully place. I feel good just to be able to be here, thanks to coach Pittman and my other coaches. My Peninsula Team really helps me out with wrestling and to be a better person. It’s good to be part of our team. Tomorrow is our first tournament, we are wrestling Folkstyle. I’ll be wrestling in the 112 lbs Schoolboy/Schoolgirl bracket, 5:30 a.m. will come soon so I better get some rest to be ready to do my best.

Day 1 by Chandler Michael

Day 1

Today, I woke up at 4:30 am to drive to Pocatello ID for Western Regionals. Wow, it was early but once me and my teammates got situated in the van, we were fine. The first few hours were easy and it was fun. After awhile, everyone started to get tired and we slept for about 2 hours. After that, we were all energized and read to go! The good part was lunch at McDonalds–I like me some Micky D’s! After lunch, we headed on to Idaho. The end of the drive was easy because nerves were flying. After 12 hours of traveling, we finally got to The Red Lion Inn Pocatello. Every year the number of Peninsula Wrestlers making the trip has grown and every year the trip has gotten better. Now, all I have to do is make weight, hone in my body and focus my mind. I know that the next six days will be challenging and I know what I have to do–Regionals here I come!

Chandler Michael

Old School Coach Adapts to New School Kids

Posted by Staff Writer On June – 1 – 2011

Old school coach adapts to new school kids
By Cari Hachmann/ The Portland Observer
Photo of Coach Roy PittmanA well-respected, community legacy, coach Roy Pittman is known for exposing character in his young` wrestlers at the Peninsula Park wrestling program in north Portland. His love and mentorship for kids has shaped and affected lives for 40 years. Photo by Cari Hachmann/The Portland Observer

Coach Roy Pittman of the Peninsula Wrestling Program is much more than a wrestling coach.  He is a sculptor of responsible young adults, and  for over 40 years, he has helped transform rowdy young boys into not only Olympic competitors, but worldly gentlemen.

“The first year you learn how to lose, the next year you learn how to win, and the next year you learn how to be a gentleman,” said Pittman about his standard coaching philosophies, which have been implanted on generations of local kids since opening the Peninsula program in 1970.

Girls are welcome too; however as a response to overwhelming statistics showing that young men today lag behind their female counterparts in most disciplined areas, Pittman puts a priority on understanding and ensuring the positive development of boys.

His philosophy is steeped in stats; Boys earn 70 percent of the D’s and F’s in school; make up 80 percent of high school dropouts, as well as account for over 71 percent of school suspensions and 77 percent expulsions. Boys also read and write on average between 1.5 years and 3 years behind average females.

Further, 14 percent of boys nationwide were diagnosed with ADHD by their 16th birthday and boys are five times more likely to commit suicide. Of people incarcerated in U.S. prisons, 93 percent are males. It’s estimated that 40 to 50 percent of African-American males will enter the criminal justice system sometime in their lives.

Pittman believes boys are often misunderstood in today’s society because they are socialized differently, naturally more aggressive and active, but slower to develop and less communicative than girls.

Focused more on the process of growth and risk-taking than on winning, Pittman has worked with thousands of boys and girls from all backgrounds, offering them an alternative to the streets and the sometimes restrictive structure of public classrooms.

Tivon Abel, a former wrestler and Jefferson High School student, said learning and training with Pittman transformed him “from being a Ritalin-dependent, unfocused, irresponsible and undisciplined 7th grader to a respectable, worldly young man, ready to take on challenges and responsibilities.”

Having earned two Masters’ degrees, pursued a career in teaching, and started a family, Abel lives happily today.

Photo of Coach Pittman instructing kids wrestling techniquesPeninsula wrestling coach Roy Pittman works with local kids helping them transform their natural need for rough and tumble play with becoming successful wrestlers and students.

Pittman also is a natural ally of kids, parents and teachers.

When parents drop their kids off at practice every day after school, they are not only confident that he will improve their kids’ moves on the mat, but he will prep them with skills for life in a family-like atmosphere free of judgments and comparisons.

“One thing I learned was that it’s ok to fail,” said Sean Newbury who first came to Pittman’s club in 1986. “Coming here and understanding what a positive attitude can do –it changed my perspective.”

Newbury began living with his grandmother after his parents left him for drugs and alcohol. She thought her grandson could use some character, so she drove him over to Peninsula Park and from then on, Newbury’s glass went from half-empty to half full.

Like many of his previous wrestlers, Newbury returned to Pittman, (once a Pitt wrestler always a Pitt wrestler), only this time with his 9 year-old son, Alex.

“He’s a really nice coach,” said Alex Newbury who started wrestling in the club at age 6.

Peninsula wrestlers range from ages 4 to 18, some are there to release energy, others are aspiring champions of the sport, but all have come to respect Pittman and trust him as a coach, mentor, motivator, and role model.

The coach encourages parents to work with him directly in order to better understand their child’s natural need for rough and tumble play and foster their goals of becoming successful wrestlers and students.

“To me, this is one solution to the gang problem,” said Pittman, “Reaching them at a young age and also, working with the family.”

One parent says her child has learned to control his emotions and become more in touch with himself.  He is able to better verbalize his opinions to his parents, control his diet, and not quit when things get tough, she said.

Under the Peninsula Wrestling Club’s Proper Etiquette: Good Manners rules, the young wrestlers are encouraged to conduct proper manners including daily hygiene; how to greet and open doors for people; shut off cell phones and electronic devices; and follow “tournament behavior” which applies anywhere in public.

Table manners, swearing, staring, bullying, interrupting, ignoring others, and wearing respectable clothing are other topics addressed in the good manner guide.

As part of the Oregon Wrestling Association, Pittman’s club meets all over the state. Such extensive traveling gives his young people the opportunity to compete with clubs of all levels, but it also helps them learn how to be responsible individuals who can present themselves maturely and represent the club in a positive manner.

The local community is encouraged to support the Peninsula Wrestling Club with two future fundraisers.

A rummage sale with treasures from more than 30 families will be held on Saturday, June 4, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 18201 S.E. Stark St.; and a car wash will be held at the Burgerville restaurant at 10903 N.E. Fourth Plain Blvd. in Vancouver on Sunday, June 12 from 10 am. to 4 p.m.

All the proceeds will help the team with travel expenses for the Western Regionals in Pocatello, Idaho. For more information or if you have any questions, contact Bridget at 360-433-8174

How many of these wrestlers can you name?

KGW Visits Peninsula Wrestling