By Lethbridge Herald on January 25, 2024.
By Justin Seward
The University of Lethbridge Pronghorns wrestling team are set to hit the mats this weekend to host other Canada West teams for meets during their inaugural season.
The Horns will team up with the University of Saskatchewan Huskies against the University of Calgary Dinos tonight in the dual meet.
The Horns joined the Huskies because they couldn’t fill every weight class.
There will be 10 women’s and men’s weight classes at the dual meet.
“What we do is in the Can West here is we try to make as good a show as possible,” said Shawn Daye-Finley, Horns wrestling head coach.
“So me and the other coaches, we put together our line-ups and match off each weight class.”
Teams are awarded more points for a pin or a 10-point superiority, which is a match finishing if there is a lead of 10 points by a wrestler.
“So basically it’s the team with the most wins or pins that would win the dual,” he said.
Daye-Finley said all the teams in the Can West are pretty close.
“You can’t wrestle in a mirror and get better,” he said.
“So we train together and travel together often and get to know each other over the years.”
Daye-Finley has a feeling of excitement for his team in the dual meet.
“The team is excited,” he said.
“They’re all in their first year and there’s five years eligibility. So they’re… kind of entering a league with an uphill battle as a team. But as individuals, they’re working really hard and they’re growing and doing great things and I have high hopes for the future of the program.”
Doors will open at 6 p.m. with wrestling beginning at 7 p.m. for the dual meet tonight at the 1st Choice Savings Centre.
Can West teams from University of Calgary, Saskatchewan and Alberta and various other athletes will be participating in the Invitational on Saturday beginning at 9 a.m.
“So they’re really cool events where the experience varies but it’s basically 18-year-olds plus,” said Daye-Finley.
“I have a few high school kids from LCI that’ll be wrestling in that event that are kind of at the top echelon of their weight (and) age categories. So they’ll be testing themselves against some much older opponents. It’s an exciting time. It’ll be the first senior-aged wrestling tournament in the City of Lethbridge that’s ever been hosted.”
Admission for adults is $10 or $15 for both days while students and children are free.
“The inaugural season has been going swimmingly,” said Daye-Finley.
“I couldn’t imagine it going any better. I expected a much more uphill battle and it’s been much more performance based than I thought it would be. I thought that we’d have a lot more hiccups in the administration and a lot more harder time (s) getting going. But actually it’s been right to wrestling, right to work and I’m truly excited for the future of the program because like I say all (of) our athletes are in their first year and next year we’ve already sign some more and some great athletes are moving to Lethbridge to wrestle.”