Ivy Threatful tops the podium at the national championships. (Contributed)

Ivy Threatful tops the podium at the national championships. (Contributed)

Threatful wins national wrestling championship

Maple Ridge Rambler known for her dedication

Maple Ridge Ramblers wrestler Ivy Threatful won a national championship in Fredericton, N.B. over the weekend.

Last year, Threatful was fourth at the nationals, and said the difference this year was making every practice with the Ramblers and her club team count.

“Hard work and dedication are her secret,” said coach Bill McCrae, “and she’s so physically and mentally tough.”

He said the 15-year-old Grade 10 student won the cadet championship in convincing style, allowing just one point to be scored against her through four matches.

Threatful said last year’s results, just missing the podium, was her motivation.

“I was really disappointed and promised myself that I would came back and win it in 2019,” she said. “Since then I have trained really hard. I practised 12-15 hours a week with Coast Wrestling Academy and my high school team.”

She also went to a lot of training camps and wresting tournaments. Last summer, she went to a camp with the Washington State women’s wrestling team, competed in the B.C. Summer Games and went to wrestling camps at SFU. In November, she fought at SFU against university-level wrestlers. In January, she spent time in Pennsylvania at Wyoming Seminary and trained with some of the best female high school wrestlers in the U.S.

“I also added strength and conditioning to my training program, was disciplined with my diet and made some personal sacrifices,” she added.

At nationals, her first two matches were over in about 30 seconds, with her up 10-0. Her third match she won by pin, already up 11-1.

In the championship, she again won by technical superiority, 10-0, in a match last lasted about 90 seconds.

“Winning the national title feels amazing and I’m really proud of myself,” she said. “I can’t wait to see how I do next year. My goal for 2020 is to win another national title and a spot on the Canadian national team, so that I can represent Canada at the World Championships.”

It’s the kind of accomplishment that even has her dreaming about one day representing her country in the Olympics.

Ryan Hicks, who won a national championship in the Greco competition last year as a cadet, and silver in freestyle, was competing in the age 17-18 class this year. He won his first two matches, then lost the next two against tough competition. The Grade 11 wrestler will still have his senior year to get back on the podium.

Hicks won silver at the B.C. championships this year.

Grade 10 Adrian Truong suffered a neck injury at the B.C. championships. He still won his first two matches at the nationals, but then was eliminated with two losses.

Marquessis Haintz had terrible luck. A medal favourite, she injured her ankle during warmups, and was eliminated in two straight matches.

“It was the size of a grapefruit,” McCrae ofher ankle. “To her credit, she still tried to wrestle on it.”

Haintz was a leader on the Ramblers squad that won the provincial girls team points trophy, as she won gold for the second straight year, in the 54-kg class.