Top-ranked Wildcat wrestlers prepare for season

Adrian Eggers, Staff Writer

As fall sports come to a close, winter sports season is right around the corner, which means the WSC Wrestling Team is gearing up for the 2016-2017 season.

This is the ninth season of the Wayne State Wrestling Team, which has had tremendous success under Head Coach Greg Vanderweil.

“We’re coming into season number nine and in seasons six, seven and eight we had All-Americans in each and a conference championship in season eight, so the team is heading in the right direction,” Vanderweil said.

“Our numbers are up this year and we hope to be a top ten team in the nation at the end of the year in Allen, Texas,” Vanderweil said.

The wrestling team is a club sport, which falls under student activities. The wrestling team is not a varsity sport at the college, which means that the college doesn’t directly fund the team.

“We are not a varsity program. We’re under the student activities,” Vanderweil said.

“One thing that we have been able to develop is a 100 percent financial support for the wrestlers which includes gear, travel, lodging and registration, which is all covered by extensive fundraising through the community and campus support,” Vanderweil said.

Currently the roster includes 14 wrestlers, which included six national qualifiers in their respective weight classes from last season.

“We have six returning national qualifiers. Devon Rupp, Ryan Nightster, Spencer Trout and Caleb Thomas are some of the guys that made it the farthest in last year’s tournament,” Vanderweil said.

“We only had eight guys out of the 11 weight classes and we won the conference tournament with all eight guys placing in the top three, and they’re back, and we also have a very strong freshman class coming in,” Vanderweil said.

All students are encouraged to join and any questions can be directed to Greg Vanderweil at [email protected].

“Every day at 4:15p.m. we are underway at the wrestling room, which is located next to the O’Rileys across from the armory and the Sportsman hotel,” Vanderweil said.

The Wayne State Wrestling Team opens up the regular season on Friday and Saturday in Wayne at the Wayne Middle School.