Micah Whitcome a real bulldog | NevadaAppeal.com

Micah Whitcome a real bulldog

Dave Price

Micah Whitcome is a real bulldog when it comes to wrestling – a Carson City Bulldog, that is.

And even though he is only 13, Whitcome is quickly building a reputation as a young star for Carson’s age group program. A young star with a lot of mat time under his belt.

Just consider that he began wrestling at age 5, and last month the Eagle Valley Middle School 120-pounder won a Tah-Neva League championship as well the Outstanding Wrestler award for the 7th grade division. That was really no big deal, either, because Whitcome accomplished that same double in 1999 and has actually competed for Eagle Valley since he was in 4th grade.

Last weekend, Whitcome won the 120-pound gold medal at the inaugural state junior high school tournament held in Las Vegas – a performance that improved his season record to a glossy 64-1. He will be competing again today at the Cliff Keen World Championships in Reno. Competition begins at 9 a.m. and continues through Sunday at the Reno Livestock Events Center.

Last year’s Cliff Keen tournament attracted more than 2,000 age group wrestlers (5-18 year olds) representing 42 states and two foreign countries, according to Mike Whitcome, director of the Carson Bulldogs and Micah’s father (a third-place medalist at state as a Carson High School junior in 1980).

“Last year I was one match away from placing at this tournament (12-and-under),” young Whitcome said. “Now, I have to move up to 15-and-under (age group) so I potentially could see high school sophomores or juniors.”

Whitcome, who will celebrate his 14th birthday on April 24, is looking forward to the challenge.

“I should do well, I’m wrestling better than I ever have,” Whitcome said. “I’m not sure whether I can place or not, I think I can compete.”

Last Saturday, Whitcome won his first state championship at Cimarron-Memorial High School in Las Vegas. In the finals, he scored in the first period on a takedown, followed by a takedown and near fall in the second round before he finally pinned in the third. His only loss this came earlier this season in Vacaville, Calif., an overtime decision to a California state champion from Turlock.

Looking ahead, Whitcome also plans to compete in June at the USA Wrestling Western Regional freestyle tournament in Pocatello, Idaho.

His father, Mike Whitcome,

Whitcome, who carries a 3.7 grade point average in the classroom, plays football in addition to wrestling. There’s no doubt about his favorite activity.

“Wrestling is a one-on-one sport. You don’t have a team, so if you lose you can’t blame it on anyone,” he said. “You’ve got to train a lot harder than some of the sports, and it’s tough mentally. It’s been a lot of work; it didn’t come naturally. My first year, I won one match. It’s a demanding sport. There’s a lot of training, But it’s fun when you win.”