Fraser High wrestling attempts to add to its string of championships

By: Mark Vest | Fraser - Clinton Township Chronicle | Published December 12, 2016

 Fraser High senior wrestler Danny Pfeffer takes part in a practice session in November. Fraser coach Rick Julien said his seniors have been “doing the job.”

Fraser High senior wrestler Danny Pfeffer takes part in a practice session in November. Fraser coach Rick Julien said his seniors have been “doing the job.”

Photo by Deb Jacques

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FRASER — After winning three consecutive Macomb Area Conference division titles and two district championships over the past three seasons, Fraser High wrestling coach Rick Julien is not ambiguous about his goals — he wants more of the same.

The Ramblers have won a MAC Blue title each of the last two seasons, which was preceded by a MAC Gold championship in their 2012-13 campaign.

The championship streak started after going 14-15 overall and 3-4 in the MAC Blue in the 2011-12 season. 

“Right then and there, I started preaching championships,” Julien remembered.

With the program having achieved just that over the past few years, Julien reflected on how rewarding the Ramblers’ success has been.

“It’s been gratifying,” he said. “It’s fun. We’ve won quite a few tournaments over the last few years.” 

For all the success Fraser has enjoyed, a regional championship has eluded the program. It never been won in program history.

Last season, the Ramblers made it all the way to a Division 1 regional final before losing to Macomb Dakota 32-28.

Although the end result wasn’t to his liking, the atmosphere of the event got Julien’s attention, and he hopes it will help inspire younger kids to give the sport a try.

“It was very exciting,” he said. “We had a packed house. We went right down to the wire. … It would be really big for the program, just to get there. When you get stands packed in like that, you get some recognition — kids like to come out when you have a winner.” 

Among the group of current Ramblers are seniors Danny Pfeffer, Elijah Tucker, Troy Martinez, Jake Curmun and Jack Bingham.

“All my seniors seemed to have stepped up to the plate this year and have been working hard, which really helps,” Julien said. “These guys have all been doing the job.”

Julien added that he has a good group of juniors. He is hoping that the leadership the seniors are displaying rubs off on them so that Fraser can “get the same thing going next year.”

As for Julien, he has around 460 wins in his coaching career, which spans 30-plus years. He would like to reach 500 before calling it quits.

In the meantime, he is still enjoying the sport he has given so much of his life to.

“Right now, I’m satisfied,” he said. “I don’t know how much longer I’ve got in me, but I still love the sport; I still love what I’m doing.”

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