Hart’s Altland represented the Pirates well at state wrestling tourney.

March 9, 2016
Robert Altland takes instruction from his father, assistant coach Brad Altland, after a match at the MHSAA state wrestling tournament

Robert Altland takes instruction from his father, assistant coach Brad Altland, after a match at the MHSAA state wrestling tournament

By George C. Wilson, contributing writer. 

AUBURN HILLS — Robert Altland wrestles 10 pounds under the 103 pound limit in his weight class.  That did not deter him during the Michigan High School Athletic Association Division 4 individual wrestling championships at the Palace in Auburn Hills this last weekend.  The young Hart Pirate wears his small stature as a badge of pride.  Just moments after winning his final match of the season securing all state status with a seventh place medal the freshman proudly stated “I’m the smallest wrestler entered in the tournament this year.”  And so he was.  Over 890 wrestlers were entered in the tournament in 14 weight classes in four school divisions and the Pirates sent in the lightest contestant.

Robert’s style of wrestling relies heavily on skilled positioning and quick reactions.  He maintains a good low stance and blocks larger opponents effectively by deflecting their attacks and skillfully exploiting their mistakes.  His crafty style belies his age but as Robert points out “I started wrestling when I was two.”  A cheerful fearlessness and buoyant confidence is a natural outcome.

The young Pirate wrestling squad finished second in the always tough West Michigan Conference this season.  Assistant coach Brad Altland noted: “We are only graduating one senior from this year’s team.  With good off season and hard work we should come back strong.”  The evidence is ample for that expectation. In addition to returning state placers Robert Altland at 103lbs they have freshman state placer Noah Cantu who finished eighth at 112 pounds.  The Pirates can also count on state qualifiers sophomore Jacob Bosley and junior Carlos Garcia who competed at 112 pounds and 160 pounds respectively.  Look for the Hart Pirates to return to form next season with a nucleus of talent to challenge for the league crown.  

George C. Wilson has been a high school wrestling coach and educator for 25 years. He is the Media Specialist for Rockford High School and has most recently coached wrestling there. George grew up in Scottville and graduated with the Mason County Central class of 1979. 

 

Help Fund Local News

Please consider helping us keep local news active by sending a PayPal payment.

Subscribe to OCP via email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 12,760 other subscribers