From left, J.P. and Chase Newton, Dan and Matt Waltermeyer, and Mario and Moises Guillen face off against each other during wrestling practice at Perrysburg High School, even though they are in different weight classes. Coach Sam Cotterman says he does it to ramp up the intensity of the practices.
There are 37 wrestlers in the Perrysburg High School program, but coach Sam Cotterman is pitting three sets of brothers against each other who are constantly in practice even though they are in different weight classes.
“I do it all the time,” Cotterman said. “I don’t care what moves they know from their brother. There is never love lost. They never want to lose a point or takedown to your brother. I do it as much as I possibly can because they never wrestle harder.”
That means sophomore Mario Guillen in the 113-pound weight class is constantly going against little brother Moises Guillen in the 120 class; senior J.P. Newton in the 152 class is up against freshman Chase Newton in the 170 class, and twins Matt Waltermeyer and Dan Waltermeyer, both juniors, are butting heads in practice.
The six brothers are among the 14 regular competitors on the team.
If anyone knows about going against a sibling, it’s Cotterman. His twin brother, Steve, became a mixed martial arts fighter. Cotterman also knows the support; Sam rarely misses seeing his brother in the ring. When he missed a match last year, Steve called him from the ring right after the fight.
He knows how hard brothers get after it in practice, so he matches them up.
“I hate losing to him, it’s the worst,” Mario said of Moises. “Sometimes it can be boring, because we know the other person’s moves. Sometimes the coaches split us up because it is getting ugly.”
J.P. Newton, top, takes down his brother Chase during practice at the high school. J.P., who has won three league champion-ships, says he pushes his brother hard because he has higher expectations of him than any other freshman.
The Guillen brothers said competing pushes them to be better, and they finished each other’s sentences while explaining it. Mario finished fifth in the state last year as a freshman in the 106 weight class.
“It is always intense,” Dan Waltermeyer said about wrestling his twin, Matt. “We always want to impress each other.”
Matt is in the 145 weight class while Dan is 160.
For the Newton brothers, expectations are high.
J.P. has won three Northern Lakes League championships and finished third in the state last year. He said he has higher expectations for Chase than any other freshman — he pushes him harder.
“There was a point where Chase wasn’t working as hard, and let’s just say J.P. persuaded him to work harder,” their father, Brian Newton, said. “As a parent that is great to see, show the way.”
Chase said he knows his brother is trying to help. While J.P. said he feels satisfied when he sees Chase use a tip or move he offered, Chase said he still sees an “I-told-you-so look.”
“It is a blessing,” Mr. Newton said about watching his sons on the same team. “It is awesome. I know it is corny, but it is kind of a dream come true.”
Cotterman said he loves it. Having siblings on the team is like having extra coaches, with the brother always trying to help. He said J.P. is already talking to Chase about things he would be coaching up anyway.
“It means a lot to me growing up with a twin brother,” Cotterman said. “I don’t know if there’s ever someone you are more competitive with than with your sibling, but you also don’t love anyone as much.”
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