Cross-town rival wrestlers to join forces at Simon Fraser University next fall

Simon Fraser University wrestling coach Justin Abdou with his newly-signed high school wrestlers, Nathan Vulliet and Ciaran Ball.

Two wrestlers from cross town rival schools will compete for same college. Nathan Vulliet from Edmonds-Woodway and Ciaran Ball from Meadowdale have signed National Letters of Intent to compete for Simon Fraser University. SFU coach Justin Abdou cited work ethic, wresting skills and leadership for reasons these student-athletes were recruited.

Vulliet and Ball have been friends and competitors since they were seven years old in the Wrestling Rhinos, the oldest youth wrestling club in the state of Washington. In the early years they were workout partners and competed in the same weight until “he kept growing and I stopped,” Vulliet said with his well- known infectious laugh. In 2014, Ball placed second in state at 195 lbs, Vulliet was second at 145.

When asked why SFU, both athletes said it was the academic programs and the desire to join another long-time friend on the SFU squad — 2013 Meadowdale graduate Morgan Smith. “I liked the coaching staff and the academic programs they offer,” said Vulliet. “I plan to major in marine biology or kinesiology and their programs are awesome.”

As for Ball: “I am not sure yet about a major, but the school has many great options for majors. I am excited to be going there”

Ball said he plans to compete at 197 lbs; Vulliet said he will wrestle a 149.

— Story and photo by Mike Cooper

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