By Todd Rohde~CORRESPONDENT
The Johnsburg wrestling team looks to be moving in a positive and right direction, as their numbers and experience continue to grow with each season. With the above in mind, the Skyhawks are hoping to bring some intensity as well as excitement when they take to the mat this season.
“I feel and think that our team should be much improved from last season, as our numbers are growing and more kids are buying into our team philosophies,” second-year varsity head coach Lenny Grodoski said.
“Our goal is to improve on our conference placing, compete for a regional title, advance in the sectionals and qualify more individuals onto the State tournament.”
The Skyhawks posted a 8-16 overall record in dual meets a season ago, but they were a much better team than their mark may have indicated as they tied a school record by placing fifth in the conference. As a team Johnsburg didn’t advance past the regionals, but had five sectional qualifiers and lost Bobby McKay and Andrew Yoder to graduation.
The program consists of pretty solid numbers as there are 30 athletes out for the team this season including five seniors, three juniors, eight sophomores and 13 freshmen. The Skyhawks have numerous returning letter winners including two state and four sectional qualifiers to go along with a nice mix of experience and potentially strong newcomers, despite having not chosen captains yet.
The Skyhawks will be turning to state qualifiers in junior Christian Nugent and sophomore Branden Peshek for leadership, guidance and experience. They will also be expecting good things from seniors Brandon Boyle, Brian McKay and Nick Lewis as well as a handful of others.
“Our goal is to constantly be making gains forward both as a program and individuals,” Grodoski said. “The key to our success this season is going to be the athletes remaining committed to the philosophies of what our program stands for.”
The Skyhawks are hoping to not only be competitive within the conference, but also do well in the postseason tournament in an attempt to be represented at the State tournament. All of the teams within the conference should be pretty competitive and anyone has the ability to defeat another on any given day.
“We are more focused on improving as individuals and our program than we are about the teams that we face,” Grodoski said. “We respect all of the programs that we face, but we want to concentrate on doing the right things within our program and this should result in us being successful as a team.”
The strength for the Skyhawks