Kris Newport signs to wrestle at SW Oregon CC

Scott Swanson

Wrestler Kris Newport signed a letter of intent Thursday, April 21, to compete for Southwestern Oregon Community College in Coos Bay.

Newport, who won two state titles as a Husky, one as a freshman and another this past season as a senior, said he chose the school because it felt right.

“It’s a small community like Sweet Home and the weather’s the same,” he said. “That made me feel at home. It’s a small campus.”

Coach Steve Thorpe told Newport, who was flanked by his father and mother, Greg and Nikki Newport, that he was proud of him.

“Chris has a great opportunity here, “ Thorpe said to a group of a couple of dozen wrestlers and other students, and a few adults, who attended the signing ceremony in the high school library. He said Newport received a full scholarship to attend the college.

“I’m proud of what he has accomplished,” Thorpe said.

Newport finished his high school career with a record of 138 wins – 84 of them falls – and 24 losses. He is one of seven wrestlers in school history to earn two state titles – Thorpe himself being the first of those. He also is one of six Sweet Home wrestlers to win four district titles, earning district Outstanding Wrestler honors in 2009 and 2011.

He also was a three-time Greco and five-time freestyle medalist at the state championships, including a cadet state championships at 130 pounds in Greco.

Thorpe noted that Newport is the fourth Sweet Home wrestler to compete at Southwestern, which this year has signed nine state champions.

Two of them, he said, will be close to Newport’s weight.

“They’re not trying to be a good wrestling team. They’re trying to be national champions,” he said. “He’ll have to bring it every day. Now it’s on him. He won’t have me or somebody else to tell him ‘you need to do this or that.’”

Thorpe said he has been impressed with the leadership that Newport showed during his senior year for the Huskies.

“This year he was an incredible teammate. He’s been consistent this year. Every time he stepped on the mat you knew what you were going to get. He was dangerous.”

Greg Newport said it was “really exciting” to see his son sign to go to college.

“I encouraged him and told him that if he got opportunities, he should go after them.

But he did this himself,” Newport said. “When it comes to the scholarship and all that, it really comes out of Kris’ heart.”