East Clinton wrestling will have one of its larger teams this season in terms of numbers.
Coach Doug Stehlin said he’d like for the wrestlers to be a little more spaced out in terms of where they fit into the respective weight classes.
“We have more kids this year than last year but they need to spread out a little bit,” said Stehlin, who is entering his 13th season as East Clinton’s only head varsity coach for wrestling.
Stehlin’s coaching staff includes Jim Vest as varsity assistant; Andrew Ramsay has junior high head coach; John Cline as junior high assistant coach; and volunteer assistants Tyler Earley and Brian Hackworth.
With six returning letterwinners and seven freshmen, Stehlin likes the numbers and the enthusiasm the start of a new season brings to the practice room.
“Everyone is getting excited about the season to start,” said Stehlin. “Many of the wrestlers are excited for the return of more tournaments this year.”
Cooper Rack and Zach Vest are upperclassmen who have taken leadership of the team. Rack was fourth in the league tournament.
Jaden Singleton was fourth in the league and fourth at sectionals last season.
Rack, Vest and Singleton are joined by returnees Kaden Hiles, Michael Horn and Curtis Singleton. Horn was a swimmer last season but has returned to wrestling for his senior season.
Stehlin said his team needs to be aggressive and go after it on the mat. His team goal is to win the SBAAC National Division and finish as a top five team in the sectional tournament.
“I want the team to work harder and get better every week,” he said. “I hope to have multiple qualify for districts and get a couple to the state tournament.”