Casey Woodall’s goal as coach of the Payson High School wrestling team is to return the program to the prominence it enjoyed in the 1980s and ’90s when region and state championships were the norm.
The coach, who is being applauded around the Rim Country for his dedicated work, knows the best way to regain the gleam is by building a strong foundation among younger wrestlers.
His efforts to accomplish that include hosting the Payson Junior Wrestling Club for aspiring grapplers 4 to 12 years of age. Sessions are held at 6 p.m. every Tuesday and Thursday in Wilson Dome.
Currently about 30 youth are taking advantage of the program.
In addition to the youths attending practice sessions, some have competed in USA Wrestling tournaments in Camp Verde, Show Low and Holbrook.
The club sessions are free of charge and both Woodall and assistant coach Rocky Beery are on site to offer supervision and instruction.
The only thing interested youths need to do to participate is show up in Wilson Dome.
Jeffrey Kelley played his way to a fourth place finish in the Boys 15 to 18 Years Division at the Junior Golf Association of Arizona Yuma City Junior Championship tournament May 19-20 at Desert Hills Golf Course.
On the par 72 course, Kelley — who was a member of Payson High’s state runner-up golf team — shot a 9-over par 153.
In the 13 to 14 years boys division, Mitchell McGuire was 11 at 197.
Former Lady Longhorn basketball coach Grant Coley is hosting the Third Annual Rim Country Middle School Girls Basketball Camp from 9 a.m. to noon, June 6 to 8 in Wilson Dome.
The fee for all three days is $25 and $10 for one day.
Three-day campers will receive T-shirts. There will also be prizes and a pizza party.
Payson High and Sandra Day O’Connor varsity players will assist Coley at the camp.
Coley promises the camp will stress fundamentals of the sport.
For more information, call Coley at (928) 978-4116.
Lady Longhorn Volleyball Summer Schedule
• May 29-July 12: Open gym camp; 4 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., Tuesdays and Thursdays (includes half-hour agility training); Wilson Dome, $10 one-time fee.
• May 23-July 27: Omnibalance agility training; 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., Wednesdays, $10 one-time fee.
• June 18-19: Junior Camp from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday and Tuesday; for incoming fourth- to ninth-graders; $30 (includes T-shirt). Register at parks office in Green Valley Park. High school players help coach; ninth-graders can decide to be in the camp, or help coach.
• June 22-23: Blue Ridge tournament; taking three Payson teams and staying at a hotel, $20 fee.
• June 25-27: All American camp; 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Wednesday; by invitation only; $20; participants must commit to all days; semi-private lessons also available at a cost of $22/hour.
• July 14: Florence Tournament; taking three Payson teams; $15 per person fee.
• July 3rd week: Football camp meals (2); serving football players at football camp as a fund-raiser.
• July 21: Payson tourney; three Payson teams; in Wilson Dome, old gym, and Rim Country Middle School gym; fee is $10 per person.
• Aug. 1-3: Pre-tryout camp, 3:45 p.m. to 5:45 p.m., Wednesday, Thursday and Friday in Wilson Dome and old gym; $5 fee.
• Aug. 4: Payson alumni tourney, 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., Saturday at Wilson Dome; free admission: there will be one “varsity” team fielded.
• Aug. 6-7: Tryouts, 3:45 p.m. for frosh team; 5 p.m. for upperclassmen; Blue card.
• Aug. 8: Pledge drive meeting and packet hand out (fund-raiser).
• Aug. 31-Sept. 1: Payson Invitational with 24 teams; Wilson Dome, old gym and RCMS gym; non-varsity players work the tournament.