Wrestling season just around corner for Hornets


Abbie Johns, Chelsea Buzz Reporter

The Chelsea Hornets wrestling team is ready to perform, as their season begins November 9 with the Blue and White Night at Chelsea High School. This is only the beginning, as the team has a long and tough season ahead. 

On October 6, head coach, Heath Butler picked five gentlemen to speak for the team on the Kool 96.5 radio show. One of the boys, Kaleb Johnstone, had high expectations about his plans for the upcoming season.

¨Undefeated state champ is what I’m going for,” he said.

Johnstone has high expectations for himself, but what about the team as a whole? Johnstone made clear what he is expecting out of his teammates to make it to state.

¨Chelsea’s team is very solid this year, and I expect a top five performance in the individual state tournament as well as making the semifinals in duals,” Johnstone said. “After this season, we only lose two seniors, so we have a great opportunity to compete for a title the next two seasons.”

With the target on Johnstone’s back to compete well, we go on to ask Johnstone in a later interview how he is going to lead the team this year.

¨The best leadership style, in my opinion, is leading by example; working hard, on and off the mat, and expecting success.¨

Having a leader on the mat helps the team exceptionally well. However, Chelsea Buzz tuned in with Coach Butler to find out how he is leading the team and preparing for success for the rising season.

¨To prepare for the season, we had a strong summer training session with practices, OTA sessions at Holtville and our place, and also wrestling in a couple tournaments. We’ve then entered the fall with some scheduled pre-season practices that work within off-season rules. Our year around weight lifting program has now been implemented this fall during our 6th period class sessions. All of those things have helped and are currently still helping us to prepare for the beginning of our winter season. ¨

Chelsea Wrestling has been putting in the work in the off-season. Coach Butler explains the goals he has for his team, with the hard work paying off.

¨I’ve discussed with our coaching staff and team already about our team goals especially the importance of constantly working to the standard to meet those goals as well,” Butler said. “In wrestling season, there are two different divisions to compete in. We want to do really well in the duals and traditional formats. Our goal for duals is to win our region and compete no shorter than the quarterfinals in the state duals bracket.

“I believe this team can get to the quarters, semis, or duals state championship if we stay together as a unit. Our goal for the traditional tournament which is more individual based is to finish within the Top 5 and have at least 5 state placers. We’ve got several wrestlers who are capable of finishing high in their respective brackets.¨

Expectations are high on and off the mat. Coach Butler expects greatness out of his boys, and girls. Chelsea has 5 girls ready to compete this year, which is a new addition to the team. Girls have competed in the past, but girls wrestling is growing.

¨We’re also excited about our girls that will compete this season. Between HS and MS we have 5 girls that will be wrestling. Some are planning to compete in the co-ed brackets against guys as well but our state has the pilot program that began last year offering girls only divisions. So, we will also have some girls that elect to compete in only those groups. With either choice, it’s going to be fun watching our girls compete while they help to grow female wrestling in Alabama and across the nation.¨

Chelsea Wrestling has a bright season ahead, as they are ready to bring home state titles. Come support the wrestling team on Blue and White night as they work toward a state title to put under Chelsea’s name.