Currently ranked first in New England’s preseason polls and 13th in the nation, wrestling is looking to repeat last year’s success under new leadership. New Head Coach Dan Hasenfus, replacing former head coach Dan DiCenzo, hopes to bring his coaching experience at Norwich to an already-strong Williams squad in order to help the men repeat last year’s record-breaking season.
This year’s team will look to see good things from Josh Mattana ’11, who is hoping to build on a strong collegiate career and compete in NCAAs; Corey Paulish ’11, who currently holds a career record of 102-26; and especially Ryan Malo ’11. The senior set the record for most pins in a season, most wins in a season and most points scored in a season last year, and Malo finished second at Nationals for the second year in a row last season.
“Our team’s goals for the season are to recapture the NEWA conference championship and to win the Div. III team GPA award,” Hasenfus said. “The whole team is key to our success because we are looking to place all 10 guys at our conference tournament, and it will take a team effort to achieve this.”
The team is especially looking forward to wrestling at the Simpson College Invitational [Dec. 3-4], which will feature seven-time Div. III National Champs Wartburg, along with Luther and Simpson.
The loss of five of last year’s wrestlers, including Dylan Rittenburg ’10 and Nathan Shippee ’10, should not inconvenience the Ephs because the team is so strong. While Shippee’s departure leaves an open position in the 184 lb. slot, the number of wrestlers looking to claim a starting position will leave the team with no shortage of underclassmen replacements.
The team will take to the mats at 10 a.m. Saturday at the Doug Parker Tournament at Springfield.