VHS hosts its annual Black and Gold event

Weston Blackburn and Isabel Andrade

VHS wrestlers prepare for tournaments at the Black and Gold event

On Nov. 16, the Ventura High School Wrestling Team opened its annual Black and Gold event to the public. The wrestling team consists of boys’ and girls’ teams. Both teams attended and participated in this event.

Ventura High School wrestlers faced off against each other in front of a crowd at the Black and Gold event. Photo by: Weston Blackburn

VHS Wrestling Coach Michael Gacha said, “Traditionally, [how Black and Gold worked was that] the last two kids in each weight would wrestle and the winner would become varsity and the loser would be JV. [That way,] there is complete transparency in wrestling. The parents would see who wins and they would be varsity. Wrestling is the one sport where coaches don’t decide lineups. [Now,] we morphed it to where everybody wrestles that night at kind of a showcase for the families and the kids get their first experience on the mat.”

The Black and Gold event lasted about three and a half hours. It lasted from 5:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. 

Gacha said, “This year we ran 43 matches that night because we have over 89 wrestlers.” Each match consisted of three rounds called “periods.” Each period is 2 minutes long. After the three periods, a winner is decided.

Both friends and family of these wrestlers came to the event and filled the bleachers all to watch these matches. Each match happened one at a time.  

Wrestler Pluto Macowicz ‘25 said, “I went [to Black and Gold] because it’s good for getting used to wrestling. [Before my match,] I was nervous because I thought I was going to lose and then I didn’t, [and after the match] I felt good about myself.”

The bleachers were full with the friends and family of VHS wrestlers. Photo by: Weston Blackburn

Macowicz said, “[Some advice I would give to next year’s wrestlers before Black and Gold would be to not]be nervous because it is not super serious. It’s just getting used to wrestling and stuff.” 

Since this event went on for a few hours, there was an open snackbar for all who attended this event. They sold food like grilled cheese while spectators watched the matches.

The event took place days before a girls tournament at Pacifica High School and a boys five match duel meet tournament. Both boys’ and girls’ teams won their tournaments.