Pair of new wrestling coaches in area
ENOLA -- There's a lot of new blood in the area's wrestling scene.
Two of three area teams were guided by new coaches on Thursday at the Mid Penn Conference Wrestling Media Day at PennLive.
First-year head coach Dan Craig has taken over after having some prior experience with Waynesboro.
"I was a volunteer last year, so I know the team real well," Craig said. "I volunteered with the youth team as well, so I know some of the guys coming up. The biggest is thing is that I'm in the school (as a math teacher), which helps. A lot of our coaches haven't been in the school, so I can be there checking on the kids, trying to get more kids to come out to the team."
Senior Cody Frey said, "Practices have definitely been a lot tougher than with the old coach, but I think we've gotten a lot better. Conditioning-wise, we're a lot stronger. I feel like I don't get as tired during matches now. We've been pushing so hard during the preseason, so I think the transition into the regular season will be easier now, too."
The Indians are looking to qualify for districts, and Frey is hoping to be the first Waynesboro wrestler in recent memory to make it to the state tournament.
"I feel pretty motivated, especially since it's my last year," Frey said. "I want to be the guy that makes it there finally because we haven't been there for so long."
Chambersburg's Drew Peck will also be looking to return to states after going 1-2 at the PIAA Tournament a year ago.
"Well, we just got back from Super 32s, and Drew placed sixth down there," Chambersburg coach Matt Mentzer said. "He's only the third kid we've had place down there, and the other two are Dawson Peck and Garett Hammond, so that's a pretty good pedigree coming back from that event. Going into the season, he's in good position to get himself on the medal."
Like Waynesboro's wrestlers, Peck and the Trojans are familiar with their new coach, as Mentzer was an assistant under Rine for six seasons.
"I've actually been with him for all four years, so it's awesome," Chambersburg senior Colin Runshaw said. "We didn't lose anything in the transition. He knows what he's doing, so I think we're going to be fine."
NEW ROUTINE >> Shippensburg is still under the direction of coach Tony Yaniello, who is now in his sixth season at the helm, but this year, their offseason training was a bit different.
The Greyhounds attended team camp at the University of Virginia. The wrestlers practiced together and stayed in the campus dorms for a five-day camp.
"We had some good positive activity over the summer," Yaniello said. "Especially when you're bringing in some of the younger kids or bringing someone up from junior high, team camp helps build camaraderie with the kids. You get a chance to get to know each other, which is a good thing."
Although the Hounds will be starting a lot of youngsters, they don't seem worried.
"I think we'll have actually a pretty strong team this year, and I'm really excited about it," Ship junior Chandler Olson said. "We're going to be really strong in the upper weights. We're going to be younger with a lot of juniors, so we're still a developing team. But we should have a good season, I think."