Print Edition: January 28, 2015
In the 2013-2014 season, UFV’s wrestling team was still just considered a club. Now, only one year later, wrestling is the seventh varsity team at UFV, and the team has just been ranked number one in the Canadian University Sport (CIS) national rankings.
After knocking out their competition at the Golden Bear Open in Edmonton, the wrestling team’s combined points put them ahead of teams such as the University of Alberta Golden Bears, Winnipeg Wesmen, and Calgary Dinos.
Upon the CIS rankings being released, head coach Arjan Bhullar told The Cascade that he and the team played down their victory. They addressed it, but made sure to understand it was just a ranking.
“We’ve still got work to do,” Bhullar said. “We’ve still got to go out and get the job done. We need to keep the kids hungry.”
Right from the beginning, the goal for the wrestling team has been to win the national title. Coach Arjan says that they’re training on campus three times a week, and they even train with team Canada athletes.
“[The biggest challenge] is staying healthy,” said Bhullar. “We don’t see other individuals as challenges; we look at ourselves as individuals and see what we can improve.”
The team won’t have to travel far for the very first Canada West home meet at the Envision Athletic Centre on February 1 at 9 a.m. But before then, you can check them out in action on January 31st at the Abbotsford Exhibition Park, where they will be facing fellow in-town teams.
The team is very grateful for all the support they’ve received from the community, and couldn’t have gotten this far without it.
“Our program is self-funded,” Bhullar said. “We’re volunteer coaches who targeted certain kids who had a chip on their shoulder, or were tossed aside. We believed in them and gave them another chance. We’re passionate about this sport, and we believe in these kids.”