Eastern High School Brings Back Wrestling After 20 Year Hiatus

Wrestling practice
Wrestling practice(Kendrick Haskins)
Published: Nov. 2, 2022 at 9:51 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Wrestling is a sport that back in the day Eastern was a powerhouse. “We always had at least one or two state champions almost every year,” said former assistant and head coach Shaun Davis. But once head coach, Phil Coomes retired and Davis took over the football team, the wrestling team went away, but now...it’s back. “Eastern’s like a melting pot, so some kids that have moved in from different states, different schools always asked, hey, do you guys have a wrestling program?” said Davis.

Ren Pittman has taken over the program. He was a baseball coach for 14 years, but has an extensive wrestling background. “I’ve wrestled my entire life, and I thought, you know, I missed being with the kids. I missed coaching,” said Pittman. After putting up posters around the school, the team has over 20 wrestlers, both boys and girls. “I was so excited. I told my mom I need to get a physical. The whole shebang,” said Senior, Tacie Norman who wrestled when she lived in California before moving to Louisville.

When you’re bringing back a wrestling program for the first in over 20 years not every kid is going to have experience, so those who have wrestled are also part time coaches. “If he’s kinda behind, or it’s his first year I can kinda like teach him,” said Joshua Norrington who’s a member of the school’s ROTC program, and wrestled in middle school. While these grapplers know year one is probably going to be difficult, they’re excited to be a part of school history. “I missed it during Covid because I didn’t have anything to do besides work, so I’m just glad to be back out on the mats,” said sophomore Dominick Goatley.