Attention Readers: We're Back
C&G Newspapers is pleased to have resumed publication. For the time being, our papers will publish on a biweekly basis as we work toward our return to weekly papers. In between issues, and anytime, continue to find local news on our website and look for us on Facebook and Twitter.
 Fraser High wrestling coach Rick Julien talks with members of his team Jan. 9. Julien said there is “some talent” on the roster.

Fraser High wrestling coach Rick Julien talks with members of his team Jan. 9. Julien said there is “some talent” on the roster.

Photo by Patricia O’Blenes


Fraser High wrestling returned with a young squad

By: Mark Vest | Fraser - Clinton Township Chronicle | Published January 14, 2020

 Junior PJ Chabi, left, wrestles with a teammate at a recent practice. The Ramblers are back in the Macomb Area Conference White Division after finishing third in the division last season.

Junior PJ Chabi, left, wrestles with a teammate at a recent practice. The Ramblers are back in the Macomb Area Conference White Division after finishing third in the division last season.

Photo by Patricia O’Blenes

Advertisement

FRASER — Prior to last season, Fraser High’s wrestling program had won five consecutive Macomb Area Conference divisional championships, with one coming in the Gold Division and the other four in the Blue.

After moving up to the MAC White last season, the Ramblers’ streak was snapped. They finished third.

Despite the return of Harrison Township L’Anse Creuse and Madison Heights Lamphere, the top two teams in the White last season, Fraser coach Rick Julien would like for his team to conquer yet another division this season.

“I’ve got some talent on this team, and it’s pretty much (an) even playing field in the MAC White this year,” Julien said. “We just might be able to get this title this year; we’re not running from it.”

Julien hasn’t necessarily always felt as strongly about chasing after another division championship.

“I told (them) yesterday, I said, ‘You know guys, if you would (have) asked me three weeks ago if I thought we could win the league, I probably would (have) been honest and said, got a slight chance,’” Julien said. “Yesterday, I told (them), ‘Guys, let’s go get it. Let’s work hard and go get it. Let’s out work everybody, and let’s go try to win this league.’”

If Fraser is going to win a division championship, it will have to be with a young squad. Julien estimated that 65% his roster are freshmen and sophomores.

Although it’s been a “rough year” so far, with Fraser 2-5 at press time, he said the “kids are buying in” and working hard.

The Ramblers’ numbers aren’t bad, either.

“I think the program’s on the right direction,” Julien said. “You get 30, 35 kids out for your team, you’re OK. A lot (of) schools nowadays aren’t even getting it. Even some of the bigger programs are only getting 25, 30 kids out.”

With the launch of the Fraser Wrestling Club, the Ramblers’ numbers could get even bigger in the future.

The club is being headed by former Fraser assistant coach Kyle Tucker, with kids from kindergarten through eighth grade eligible to participate.

The potential advantage of the club hasn’t been lost on Julien.

“If they get two, three years of wrestling in before they get into high school, that really helps develop the (team),” he said. “We can develop these kids to the next level, but it’s hard to do in four years. So, it’s nice to have (the) basics come right into the program.”

The kids in the club may learn at an early age something Julien is already familiar with about the sport he has dedicated so much of his life to.

“It’s a tough sport,” he said. “It’s one of those sports that takes dedication, hard work and sweat. … You got (to) take your butt kickings.”

Advertisement