EVERETT — Japan’s Junior National Team will take on a squad of local all-star wrestlers in an exhibition freestyle dual as part of a goodwill cultural exchange on Friday at Everett High School.
The event is slated to begin at 7 p.m. Cost of admission is $6 and the proceeds will benefit the Everett High School wrestling program.
Eleven local wrestlers will get to match up against the best Japan has to offer on the mat, and spend some time with their counterparts off the mat as well.
“We think it’s important for these kids to have a cultural experience with someone from a different country, and to get to wrestle the best from somewhere else,” said Everett wrestling coach Brien Elliott, who is coordinating the event on behalf of Wesco coaches along with Oak Harbor coach Larry Falcon.
Everett will wrestle Oak Harbor in a regularly scheduled Wesco 3A North dual at 5:30 p.m., and the exhibition event will follow immediately afterward. Elliott said that after the exhibition, the Japanese wrestlers will help the Seagulls reset the gym for Saturday’s Everett Classic.
The Everett wrestlers selected to participate in the dual — Krys DuPree and Christian Balmer — will host members of the Japanese team overnight at their homes Friday. The Japanese team will take on a squad of Northwest Conference all-stars on Saturday evening.
“We want to bring the local wrestling community together and bring our two countries together,” Elliott said. “Wrestling is a brotherhood, no matter your nationality. The principles are the same everywhere, and everyone fights to advance their careers.”