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When Frank Sneeringer took over as head coach of the Delone Catholic wrestling program five years ago, the team was near the bottom of the District 3 rankings.

Now, Delone has just ended a season in which it qualified for the team district tournament and sent three wrestlers to the state tournament. And that's giving Sneeringer peace of mind as he steps away from the team.

Sneeringer officially resigned this week, ending his Delone coaching career with a dual meet record of 38-27 and two district playoff appearances. He cited a desire to watch his son Josh compete with Waynesboro University's wrestling team as his main reason for stepping down.

"When you're a coach you can't see your son compete as much as you want," Sneeringer said. "There's other things to do in life than be a wrestling coach. When I took over they'd had three coaches in three years and were winning like two matches. I wanted to restore the pride to the program. To take kids to states and regionals, I think that makes it easier to walk away.

An employee at Towson University in Maryland, Sneeringer added that the long trips from work to wrestling practice also factored into his decision. He said he always intended to stay for five or six years, and that now feels like the right time.

A graduate of Delone Catholic, Sneeringer was a state qualifier for the Squires at 105 pounds in 1986. Before becoming head coach, he was the program's junior high coach for four years and elementary school coach for six.

Sneeringer said he'd consider helping the next coach occasionally, but that it's unlikely he'll ever take another head coaching job.

"I would never coach anywhere but Delone, and at 48 years old there's not much more in the future of coaching," Sneeringer said. "I always wanted to be a coach who was a role model and leader. I never yelled at a ref and I never argued. I never wanted to give my kids an excuse to mouth off."

After the Squires went 2-11 in his first season in 2012-13, Sneeringer led Delone to four straight winning seasons and two District 3 playoff appearances in 2015 and 2017. He coached five PIAA qualifiers, and got his first medalist this season when Brian Shermeyer finished eighth at 160 pounds. Seniors Bryce Perkins and Brady Repasky also made the state tournament this season.

Having ended his own wrestling career at Delone at the state tournament, Sneeringer said it was fitting for his coaching career to end there, too.

"Wrapping that medal around Brian's neck was a great ending," he said. "Every kid in the program wants to win a state championship or have a winning record, but I think most of the kids accomplished their goals this season."

Shermeyer, who started wrestling for Sneeringer in eighth grade, said he had a feeling the coach would step down after the season. He added that gave him extra motivation at the state tournament.

"It's always a personal goal, but when someone's been in your life so long you don't want them to go away empty-handed," Shermeyer said. "He kind of shaped us all as people and really instilled the pride in Delone wrestling back into us."

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