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The LEAP Student Blog

Trevor Terris - Tonasket HS
 1/23/2013 12:00:00 AM

Author: Trevor Terris
Grade: Junior
School: Tonasket HS
Mascot: Tigers
League: Caribou Trail
Classification: 1A

My name is Trevor Terris, and I’m a junior at Tonasket High School. Everyday when my classmates and I walk into the weight room for our conditioning class, we are also walking across our wrestling room. On the north wall we see the pictures of the 15 former wrestlers that have won State Championships for Tonasket High School. On the east wall we see all the wrestlers from Tonasket history who were participants at the State Wrestling Tournament. Tonasket has always had an excellent wrestling program. The success of those can mostly be attributed to the head coach, Dave Mitchell.

The success of the program starts at a young age. The little league program is unbelievable. Mitchell has around 60 kids a year, grades K-6 who come to practice four times a week. Mitchell doesn’t miss a practice, turning these kids into wrestling studs.  Some of the high school wrestlers have been wrestling for 12 years already and haven’t even graduated yet.    

Since 1978 he has led the team to four league championships, four district championships and a second place finish at State in AA. The program has had 25 state champions with eight kids repeating. Mitchell keeps coming back for more after 35 years of coaching. When I asked him why, he quickly answered, “I love what I do and I have athletes that want to be the best.” He also said his goal every year was to make every kid be the best he can. Mitchell makes champions out of newbies and others into repeating champions.  This shows what a great coach he is, and what he can do. After the high school wrestling season is over, he takes kids to freestyle tournaments all over the Northwest.

The Mitchell family
(Kevin, Dave, Martin, Patrick and Brenda)
Photo by Brent Baker

Mitchell’s impact on wrestling started as a young man and has created a legacy within his own family.  Dave Mitchell has been a teacher and head wrestling coach at Tonasket High School for 35 years. He is the P.E., conditioning and history teacher. Before coaching he was a State Champion at Issaquah High School. He later went to the University of Washington to wrestle for four years, including one red shirt year. His final year of eligibility was at Central Washington University where he finished his teaching degree. He has three boys who love wrestling almost as much as he does. Martin, Patrick and Kevin all have State Wrestling titles of their own. Martin is one of a handful of wrestlers who have four wrestling championships.  One of Mitchell's fondest memories was when two of his boys (Martin and Patrick) were on the team that placed in the top four at the State Tournament. All three of his boys are now coaching wrestling in Washington state high schools. Martin is the head coach at Rogers High School and Kevin is the assistant. Patrick is the head coach at Chewelah High School.  Dave Mitchell is now a part of the Washington State Wrestling Coaches Association Hall of Fame.  He has put his mark in Washington State wrestling, starting in our little town of Tonasket and ending at the Tacoma Dome.  His commitment to the sport never ends, even after 35 years.

From: Kevin Terris (senior) 1/23/2013 7:03 PM

Excellent article. Displays an outstanding profile of a "true" small town image. Have made many trips to Tonasket and was always impressed with the reception our family has received with every visit.
This article explains why.
Great job Trevor for a job well done. Tonasket should be very proud.

From: John Terris 1/24/2013 7:40 AM

Trevor, Wonderful reflective, inspirational article about your Tonasket Wrestling Coach. Congratulations ...your parents, high school and community can be very proud of you. Uncle Jack

From: Joanne Landdeck 1/24/2013 12:25 PM

The Mitchells were a huge part of Issaquah High School wrestling. Whenever I hear there name I think to myself, Great Wrestlers!!!

From: Paula Terris 1/24/2013 8:01 PM

Trevor; I can't say enough about your article about Dave Mitchell. He sounds like a very special person that gives a lot of time to kids. He's a real champion. Your writing ability is superb,and he should be very proud. Gma Paula

From: Jeremy Clark 1/25/2013 9:07 AM

Great job Trevor, thank you for highlighting one of the many great things we have going on in the district for our kids and community. Keep up the great work!

From: Mike & Jan Ottman 1/26/2013 9:36 AM

Wow, Trevor what a great article, Jan & I have lived here 24 years and we just learned so many things about the Mitchell's and why Tonaset has such a great wrestling program. Thank You!
Plan on watching you guys take care of Cascade tonight you are due.

From: Peg Figy 1/27/2013 7:32 AM

Awesome job Trevor...not only do you have excellent writing skills, but your ability to describe how, through the efforts of a 'champion coach' and teacher, Dave Mitchell has inspired young athletes to be the best they can in whatever challenge they pursue! I'm very proud of you T! Grandma Peg

From: Dan Figy 1/27/2013 1:42 PM

Great job Trevor, you should be very proud of what you have done. Coach Mitchell sounds one of many proud members of the Tonasket School District. Having said that you, your classmates and the community are the lucky ones. P

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January 2013

1/23/2013 Trevor Terris - Tonasket HS
1/10/2013 Adam Husa - Mt. Si HS

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