The Oak Hills High School varsity athletic program has gotten its share of ink since the school opened last August. But the Bulldogs' junior varsity squads are doing just as well. Just take the JV wrestlers.


"They're having a banner year," said Coach Wayne "Skip" Howard. "They're having a year that it takes teams years and years to develop."


Heading into last Saturday when the Bulldog wrestlers competed in four separate events, the team was a perfect 13-0. (Results of Saturday's events were unavailable at press time.)


"It looks like a well-developed program, and we've only been open for six months."


Howard, who also teaches the school's Army JROTC class, said the young wrestlers are a lot like his cadets.


"It's their dedication. And they have the will to put in the effort and dedicate the time to make themselves better wrestlers. They actually listen to instruction."


Moreover, that ability to stay alert leads to victories on the wrestling mat.


"If you're not paying attention, you're going to be taken down and beaten. You have to pay attention to what you're doing."


Not only are the Oak Hills wrestlers dedicated, but they are also talented and the team has depth.


"We have excellent participation. I've never seen participation like this before. At Oak Hills it's very few times that we have not had a full team in all weight classes," Howard said. "The freshmen wrestlers are probably one of the most talented young group of wrestlers I've seen for their age."


But the JV squad's secret weapon are the parents and others who lend their support. The parents not only travel to away meets, but they make pancakes, toast, English muffins and other goodies to keep the athletes properly fed.


"We have the most outstanding booster club that I've ever seen with any athletic organization. I've never seen so many active parents as we have here."


Not as many people know about the talented Oak Hills High School JV teams as they do the varsity ones, but they're learning. During a wrestling event in Temecula Valley in which the Bulldogs came away with a first place trophy, Coach Howard said he overheard audience members asking about his team.


"People's heads were turning," he said "'Who's Oak Hills? Who's Oak Hills.' They know who we are are now."