Rim Country Middle School eighth-grader Mark McCarty is well on his way to someday becoming Payson's most celebrated wrestler.
His most recent accomplishment was last weekend at the Thunderbird Mountain Sky Classic Wrestling Tournament in Cottonwood.
There, McCarty won the 133-pound weight division by posting a 4-0 record. Most impressively, all his victories were by falls. In the championship finale, he pinned a highly acclaimed Buckeye grappler. Coaches named McCarty the tournament's Outstanding Wrestler.
Seventh-grader Nick Goodman also finished with a 4-0 tournament record. Like McCarty, his wins were all by pins. On his way to the weight division title, he whipped a previously undefeated wrestler from Mountain Sky Middle School.
The boys were coached in the tournament by Payson High School senior Larry Wilbanks.
Wrestlerettes host benefit
The hard working and dedicated young ladies who show up at every Longhorn wrestling match need your financial help.
Throughout the week, the wrestlerettes will be selling tickets to a benefit steak dinner, 4:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Jan. 29 in the Payson Elementary School cafeteria.
The meal includes barbecued sirloin steak, salad, beans and drinks. The $5 tickets are a real bargain and all proceeds allow the girls to continue their quest of providing support for the wrestling team.
Tickets are available from any wrestlerette or at the door.
AGF seeks information on elk poaching
Arizona Game and Fish officers are investigating the illegal poaching of a cow elk that occurred about 10:30 p.m. Jan. 15 in Freedom Acres.
Hunters apparently shot the elk and left it for dead. The only clue officials have is that the vehicle involved in the poaching either was in need of a muffler, or had a loud exhaust system.
The elk was shot about 35 yards from a residential home and very near to where six horses were corralled.
Anyone who has information on the illegal killing is asked to call Operation Game Thief at (800) 352-0700. Calls are toll free and can be made 24 hours a day.
Last chance for Little League
The last chance for Little League registration is from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Jan. 31 at the Payson Inn.
Youngsters 7- to- 15-years-of-age (as of July 31, 2004) are eligible to participate.
When registering, players must bring their birth certificates. The fee is $40 per player. There is a discount available for families who have more than one youngster participating in the program.
For more information, call Barton at (928) 468-1711 or Little League vice president Mark Frantzke at (928) 474-2746.