West Virginia Wrestling


by Dr. Bill Welker

Shaking Hands - A Dilemma in Wrestling?

Yes, it's true; shaking hands with the opposing coach at the end of an individual match has become a problem. So, what's the problem. Allow me to explain.

There have been occasional incidents when wrestlers have approached opposing coaches and while shaking hands, they taunted the coaches with "in your face" remarks in regards to beating their wrestlers. Certainly, this is very unsportsmanlike behavior which, if observed by the match official, could result in a flagrant misconduct penalty.

On the flip side, at times coaches are busy explaining to their wrestlers the mistakes they made, and do not want to be bothered shaking the winner's hand. Often they tell such wrestlers to leave them alone, giving those in attendance the impression that they are being unsportsmanlike.

Due to such problems, the powers to be at the West Virginia Secondary Schools Activities Commission (myself included) highly recommend that wrestlers do not approach the opposing coach's corner at the conclusion of a match. Keep in mind, it is a recommendation, not a mandate.

Wrestling is an ultra-demanding sport both physically and emotionally. When emotions are high due to a "hotly-contested" match, it is best to separate both parties as quickly as possible. Walking to an opponent's corner (after winning a very close match) to shake hands, can easily cause post-match. This situation would not occur with the proper post-match procedure of each wrestler shaking hands. That is all which is required by the rules.

In my opinion (based on 50 years of experience), if a wrestler sincerely wants to shake hands with an opponent's coach, wait until later after everyone has calmed down and regained proper perspective. I think a good time would be at the completion of the event, be it a dual meet or tournament.

To summarize, shaking hands is without question a positive gesture, as long as it is sincere and appreciated by both sides of the competition.

Let me know what you think.

Team Scoring and Tiebreakers in Dual Meets

The chart for team and match scoring at dual meets is as follows:

Team Scoring
3 points: Decision (1-7 point spread)
4 points: Major Decision (8-14 point spread)
5 points: Technical Fall (15 or more point spread)
6 points: Fall, Forfeit, default, or disqualification
Remember, this is team scoring for dual meets, not tournaments. We will discuss tournament team scoring next week.

In dual meet competition, if the team score concludes in a draw or tie, the winning team would be determined by the following criteria:
1) The team that has received the fewest points for flagrant misconduct or unsportsmanlike conduct shall be declared the winner.
2) The team that has won the greater number of matches (including forfeits) shall be declared the winner.
3) The team that has accumulated the greatest number of points from falls, defaults, forfeits, or disqualifications shall be declared the winner.
4) The team that has earned the greater number of points from technical falls shall be declared the winner.
5) The team that has earned the greater number of points from major decisions shall be declared the winner.
6) The team having the greater number of total match points of first points scored shall be declared the winner.
7) The team securing the greater number of near-fall points will be declared the winner.
8) The team securing the greater number of takedown points will be declared the winner.
9) The team having the greater number of reversals will be declared the winner.
10) The team having the greater number of escapes will be declared the winner.
11) The team whose opponent has been penalized more often for stalling will be declared the winner.
12) The team whose opponent has been warned more often for stalling shall be declared the winner.
13) The team whose opponent has the greater number of penalty points for all other infractions shall be declared the winner.
14) If none of the above resolves the tie, a flip of the referee's disk will determine the winner. Upon determining the winning team, a single team point will be added to the winning team's score.

Mini-Mat Quiz
Q: Wrestler A won his match 17-2. How many points would he score for his team and what type of win would this be?
A: He would score 5 points for his team with a technical fall.

Book Notes: The Wrestling Drill Book edited and authored by Bill Welker would be a great Christmas gift for your favorite wrestler! To purchase an autographed copy of The Wrestling Drill Book, just send a check or money order for $20.00 (shipping and handling is included) made payable to:

Bill Welker
110 North Huron Street
Wheeling, West Virginia 26003

Don't forget to send your return address and any personal note you want Bill Welker to write with his autograph. He will accept book requests until Tuesday, December 20, for The Wrestling Drill Book to arrive in your hands before Christmas!

Mat Notes
The Coach Joe Thomas OVAC Wrestler of the Week and the Deaton-Regis Picks of the Week by Larry Deaton - dean of Ohio Valley wrestling officials - and Jack Regis - another longtime OVAC mat arbiter - will return to this space as the mat season picks up steam.

Mat Message
"Accept the challenges, so that you may feel the exhilaration of victory."

-- General George Patton

(Dr. Bill Welker can be reached via e-mail at: mattalkwv@hotmail.com)

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