Print A wrestling mom calls Camp Verde home
Written by {ga=mlineberger}   
Saturday, 03 December 2011 00:00

Patty Pike has watched a lot more wrestling than she ever thought she would.

Michele Bradley/Larson NewspapersShe doesn’t mind, however, which is good, because being the mother of two middle schoolers involved in the wrestling program at Camp Verde Middle School as well as being married to the school’s assistant wrestling coach would make the sport rather difficult to avoid.

How ‘At Random’ Works: Through experience, reporters learn every person has a story. To prove it, each week The Camp Verde Journal reporter Mark Lineberger hits the streets in and around the Verde Valley to intercept  unsuspecting members of the public as they go about their daily business. With brief introductions and the chance to flee, the  interview begins with the fated question, “If your story was in the  newspaper, what would it be?”She’s traveled around the state to watch wrestling meets where her son Skyler wrestles and her other son, Rucker, helps manage the team.

“We make the whole circuit,” Pike said.

This past weekend, the plan was to head down to Barry Goldwater High School in North Phoenix for another event.

Last week, she was with her family in the Camp Verde High School gym to watch a high school wrestling meet.

“We’re here to show our support and give some spirit,” Pike said.

Pike and her husband, Steve, have called Camp Verde home for the last 10 years, ever since her husband’s job with the state’s adult protective services brought them to the area.

Pike found another job in banking, her field for the past 25 years. You’ll find her most days working at the Credit Union West branch in Cottonwood.

Like several local residents, the Pikes work in Cottonwood but drive home at the end of the day to Camp Verde.

Although not a Camp Verde native, Pike is quite at home in Arizona. Before moving to the area a decade ago, Pike lived and worked in her home town of Nogales.

Wrestling mom Patty Pike, right, talks about her family’s  positive experiences with the Camp Verde wrestling programs while taking in the action at a Camp Verde High School wrestling meet Nov. 22.In fact, that’s where she met her husband back in 1982.

“We were introduced by mutual friends,” Pike said with a laugh, thinking back to those days.

The couple met in the ’80s, but in 1994 they tied the knot, seven years before moving here.

Pike said she likes it here, and plans to keep calling the area home for the extended foreseeable future.

Two kids later, Pike said her son Rucker, named for the canyon in Cochise County, sometimes gets hassled about the name. But like with most middle school kids, she figures it’ll eventually pass.

In the meantime, she’s first in line when it comes to supporting her sons and their involvement in wresting.

It’s also difficult sometimes, Pike said, especially from a mother’s perspective.

“It’s very difficult,” Pike said. “Watching them go at it, sometimes it’s tough to look at.”

Still, Pike admits it’s better watching the controlled physical conflict in the confines of a wrestling match rather than worrying about her children getting into fights somewhere else.

“It also seems to help keep them focused,” Pike said. “It seems to keep their grades up.”

Her sons like wrestling, but will they one day try and go pro?

“Oh, I hope not,” Pike said.

If you happen to be at a local wrestling event in the future, take a look at the bleachers over in the Camp Verde section. It’s a good bet you’ll find Pike sitting there, cheering the boys on.