With the help of head coach Jason Yates and assistant coach Phil Arsenault, the Rockland Tigers peewee wrestling season got underway soon after the start of the new year.

The Tiger cubs already have three tournaments under their belts. Arsenault said young wrestler Connor McGonagle has placed first in his respective class in all three meets. The coach added that all the wrestlers who competed in the Camden tournament in early January brought home medals.

In their last tournament at Marshwood High School, four of the seven Tigers who competed placed.

On Sunday, Feb. 7, the local grapplers will head off to their fourth and toughest tournament to date, the state qualifier at Mountain Valley High School in Rumford.

“We have more and more kids going to the tournaments,” Arsenault said. Of the 12 youths currently registered, about eight are competing. Arsenault hopes all 12 of the wrestlers will compete at the Belfast tournament on Sunday, Feb. 28.

The Rockland peewee wrestlers practice three nights a week, including Mondays and Tuesdays from 4:30 to 6 p.m. and Fridays from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Along with Yates and Arsenault, Rod Penney, John McGonagle, Gene Kelly and Glen Lang help teach the youngsters an array of wrestling moves.

Lang also helps with the Mid-Coast Wrestling Club, which includes youngsters from the entire region.

Rockland practices are held in the former Nautica building on Camden Street, a facility owned by Composites One. The company donated the space for the Tiger cub wrestlers to use for practices as long as the group had insurance to cover the use.

The $35 registration fee each wrestler pays to participate in the program goes to insurance.

Arsenault said the youth wrestling group would like to get something together in the future to raise money to pay for their mats, purchase mat tape and cleaner and warmup gear for the young grapplers.

“We’d like to get singlets [uniforms] for the kids, black and orange to represent the Tigers at tournaments,” he said.

Money raised also would go towards insurance costs and first-aid supplies.

For more information, call Yates at 691-3862 or Arsenault at 542-1647.

Click for more photos from Rockland peewee wrestling.

VillageSoup Sports Assistant Holly Vanorse can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by e-mail at hvanorse@villagesoup.com.