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HFCC Freshman Wins First 2013 Wrestling Tournament

On Sunday, November 3, the Henry Ford Community College (HFCC) Wrestling Club went against multiple teams from the University of Michigan-Dearborn, Saginaw Valley State University, and Grand Valley State University in The Fall Brawl Tournament at Mott Community College in Flint, Michigan.

Among all the members of the HFCC Wrestling Club the take-downs were between two to six minutes. During the tournament, The HFCC Wrestling Club, coached by Grant MacKenzie, had 7 placers. “The Wrestling program exceeded my expectations at the Fall Brawl.  I knew we had talent, but I did not expect to have 7 placers.  This NCWA wrestling program has great potential,” says MacKenzie. The wrestler who placed first was 19 year old HFCC Freshman and first HFCC Wrestling Club Tournament Champion David Velez.

Velez got into wrestling during middle school; he said many of his friends had joined during seventh grade, thus he joined for eighth grade. After junior high school, he attended Dexter High School (Dexter, MI) where he finished his freshman and sophomore years and Southgate Senior High School (Southgate, MI) where he graduated with the class of 2012. The Freshman Champion has obtained numerous medals from past years during his attendance at both high schools he attended.

In wrestling, weight classes can very, however there is no advantage if someone is light weight or heavy weight. Throughout his years of wrestling, he says being overweight is not an issue. “The hardest thing is your mind. You need to practice hard enough and have trust in yourself and your team as well. If you cannot do that, you won’t be able to win anything,” Velez said.

Velez went 3-0 that day at the tournament; he wrestled one of his teammates, one wrestler from Saginaw Valley and another from University of Toledo.

“Dave Velez did a fantastic job at the Fall Brawl and made history for being the first-ever tournament champion for the HFCC Wrestling Club (NCWA),” MacKenzie said.  Velez scored three consecutive pins and spent a combined total of 2 minutes and 46 seconds on the mat. “Which is impressive,” he continues. “I expect Velez to have a great season and encourage him to visualize placing at the national tournament in March”

Velez is majoring in Cardio Vascular/ Neurology. After his years at HFCC, he plans to attend University of Michigan - Dearborn and achieve his degree there.

HFCC Wrestling Club is still recruiting members and is looking to fill its 165 pound weight class. If interested in joining, or want more information about the club, contact Coach Grant MacKenzie at