Ryan Wolf
Ryan Wolf
All Ryan Wolf wanted to do this wrestling season was improve on his 4-13 record from a year ago.

Thanks to his 4-0 record to capture the 145-pound championship at the Smithsburg (Md.) Tournament last Saturday, that goal has already been accomplished - his record at the end of 2012 is 7-3.

Greencastle-Antrim's Wolf is the Public Opinion Male Athlete of the Week.

A year ago, while wrestling in the Carlisle Holiday Tournament, Wolf dislocated his knee and was never the same on the mat. He finished with that 4-13 record.

"Ryan had gotten progressively better since he started in middle school, but because of the knee injury, last year was a rough year," Blue Devil coach Fred Yelton said. "So I expected him to be better this year and he has been."

This year at the Carlisle event, Wolf was 2-2, with one of the losses to state-ranked Chad Wickard of Big Spring.

Wolf said, "I came into the Carlisle tournament expecting to improve on last year, and I did. Because of that, I was hoping I could do pretty well (in the Smithsburg Tournament)."

Against competition that Wolf admitted wasn't nearly as good as at Carlisle, he scored a pair of pins and a technical fall to reach the final, then racked up a 17-5 major decision to win his first championship in high school.

Yelton said, "He beat a scrappy, athletic kid in the final."

"I hope it builds my confidence for the year," Wolf said. "I went from 3-3 to 7-3 and I hope that gives me a boost for the rest of the year."

Wolf also plays soccer for Greencastle, which limits how much offseason work he can put in on the mats, but lists wrestling as his favorite sport.

He said, "I like that it's one-on-one. I can determine the outcome myself instead of having to rely on somebody else to do it."

Yelton believes Wolf has a long list of factors that allow him to perform well in athletics.

"He's just the kind of kid you really want to have on your team," Yelton said. "He's gritty, he's hard-working, and he never misses a practice. He's one of those kids you see in middle school and then when he gets to ninth grade you realize he's turned into a young man.

"He's a nice kid and a good student-athlete and you want those kinds of kids to have some success."

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Ed Gotwals can be reached at 262-4755 and egotwals@publicopinionnews.com.

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Ryan Wolf, Greencastle-Antrim

Sport: Wrestling

Weight: 145

Height: 5-foot-10

Grade: Senior

Parents: Tom and Carrie Wolf

Interests: He also plays soccer for the Blue Devils and is involved in Young Life.

Surprising fact: He listens to hip-hop music before matches.

Favorite pro team: Philadelphia Phillies

Pro athlete most admired: Mike Schmidt

Most influential person in athletic career: His father, who is "always trying to make me better."

Statistics: Wolf won the 145-pound title at the Smithsburg (Md.) Tournament on Saturday, going 4-0 with 2 pins, a technical fall and a major decision He is 7-3 this season.