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Rochester youth wrestling club looking to expand

April 1, 2014

» click to enlarge «
Rochester Hills residents, Tye Zomerfeld, left, and Landen Fetty, both 7, get in some work at a Rochester Oakland County Wrestling Club practice.

Mike Sare has a vision for the Rochester Oakland County Wrestling Club.

With numbers on the rise, the club president envisions three separate squads under the club’s umbrella, allowing the sub teams to square off against each other and, ultimately, provide more seasoned wrestlers for the Rochester High, Rochester Adams and Rochester Hills Stoney Creek wrestling programs.

As of now, the club only sends its wrestlers to Michigan Youth Wrestling Association tournaments.

“I totally see where we can have our own (club) tournaments. The MYWAY is fun, but what’s missing for youth wrestling is the team component,” Sare said. “I think it’s an aspect that teaches kids that there is a team theme for this. ‘I don’t have to go on the mat by myself. If I do my job, we can still win even if I lose.’”

Sare said he’s received positive feedback of his idea from local high school coaches. The key to making it happen is bringing more wrestlers into the program.

The club started in 2002 and is for grapplers between kindergarten and eighth grade from all over the local area. The season runs from November to the end of March.

Sare said there are 28 kids in the club, including wrestlers from Troy and Utica.

Rochester alumni Josh Wood and Todd Puchovan coach the team.

Sare is relatively new to the sport; this is his first full year as president.

“I had a number of friends that did wrestling in high school and always said it was the best experience they ever had, so I told my kids to give it a try. They’re excited about it,” Sare said.

He also said wrestling offers numerous benefits.

“I kind of got the bug also,” he said. “I really do think that wrestling is an experience that all the kids should go through. Even if they do it one or two years, I really think it builds character. There are leadership opportunities, you learn to control emotions, and the health benefits.”

For more on the club, visit

“We’re looking to really take this to the next level,” Sare said.

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