Congratulations to the 2018 WWCA Award Winners:
State Coach of the Year: Joe Schwabe - Stratford
State Assistant Coach of the Year - Kane Krummel - Stratford
Wrestler of the Year: Peyton Mocco - West Allis Nathan Hale
District 5 WWCA Representative: Curtis Fielder - River Valley
District 6 WWCA Representative: Ryan Gerber - Fort Atkinson
Coach of the Year:
District 1: Dan Clark - St. Croix Falls
District 2: Joe Schwabe - Stratford
District 3: Jason Lulloff - Holmen
District 4: Chas Treml - Luxemburg Casco
District 5: Bob Empey/Dan Spilde - Stoughton
District 6: Chris Graziano - Slinger
District 7: (t) Tom Dineen - Marquette High School, Randy Ferrell - Nathan Hale
District 8: Ben Chapman - Lakeland
2018 WWCA Award Nominees:
* Dan Clark = St. Croix Falls
This year has been a very successful year for the Saint Croix Falls Wrestlers with Head Coach, Dan Clark. Dan has been coaching for 24 years and has always put out a quality team, but this year's team was special. This year St. Croix Falls went 18-1 in duals, with only one loss to Stratford, in the Team State Semi Finals. SCF also qualified 5 kids for the Individual State Tournament, with one runner up and one placing third. The Saints won several tournaments including: Northern Badger, WI Dells Duals, Ogilvie, MN and West Lakeland Conference. Dan has spent countless hours working with kids in the wrestling room as well as outside of the wrestling room. Whether it be checking on kid’s grades, cheering them on in other sports, providing rides or during the summer months taking kids to camps, Dan is always there. He is a teacher, coach, friend and sometimes a father to his wrestlers. Dan is the true meaning of a coach.
Bob Coleman - Superior
Increased participation, much improved team.
Scott Benitz - Wisconsin Rapids
Rapids was 6th out of 7th a year ago and finished 2nd this year in the Wisconsin Valley Conference. Last year we finished 6th out of 8 in our regional and this year lead for a while during the semis before falling just short to team state entrant Marshfield. Scott has coached plenty of state championship teams and this improvement in one year was as impressive as any of those. Scott is a great candidate for District 2 Coach of the Year.
Jackson Hein - Marshfield
Two Years in a row conference Champions, and Regional Champions, this year won Team Sectionals and has there team in the Team State tournament
* Joe Schwabbe - Stratford
Back to back team state champs
The Stratford team was very talented, but much depth and experience left with the senior class. As a team, we needed to reload and ask individuals to make sacrifices for the good of the team. Joe had the task to fill in the gaps/patchwork a line-up together and convince the entire team to believe in themselves and in the one goal to repeat as Team Champions. The talent in the wings was homegrown and developed by finding competition for the JV/Varsity Reserve wrestlers the previous seasons, which Joe was directly responsible. All of his wrestlers matter, not just the starting line-up.
Team Statistics: Back to Back DIII Team State Champions, 21-0 Record (Defeated DI Team State Qualifiers Head to Head Stoughton, Slinger, GET/MM) 1st Place Dells Duals Pool A, Bi-State Champions DIII (2nd Overall behind Holmen missing Jeremy Schoenherr). WIAA Individual Coaches Champions 141.5 pts to Arrowhead 94 pts
Individual: Conference Tournament (10 finalists, 8 Champs while missing to state place winners), Regional (12 finalists, 8 champs), State Tournament 9 Qualifiers, 8 Medalists (1 Champion, 3-2nd’s, 3-3rd’s, 1-4th
Kevin Casper - Coleman
Kevin continues to provide top tiered talent no matter the squad he has to work with. He brings out the best in his guys.
Pete Peterson and Ernie Brodsky - GET/MM
1st Team State Appearance
* Jason Lulloff - Holmen
Team state runner-up. Jason Lulloff took over as head coach for the Vikings in 2010. Since he has took over, Holmen has won the Mississippi Valley Conference 5 times, has won Regionals 7 times, has won Team Sectionals 4 times, and has finished top 4 at Team State three times. This year Jason led the Holmen Vikings to a 20-1 dual meet record this year. Holmen finished 5th at the Minnesota Christmas Tournament in Rochester, MN (some nationally ranked teams at this tournament). They won the Bi-State Classic outright for the first time in school history, beating the number one ranked teams in Division 2 and 3 (Luxemburg-Casco and Stratford). Holmen also won 3 other tournaments. They were Conference Champions and finished the year 2nd at the Division One Team State Tournament, losing to Stoughton, 31-29. This was the first time in school history that Holmen reached the finals at Team State. Jason has accomplished a lot in a short amount of time, but the reason why he deserves to be the Coach of the Year has nothing to do with his accomplishments as a coach. It has everything to do with his drive to constantly improve himself and his athletes. He does so much to help his athletes strive to be better. Jason opens the weight room every morning 5 days a week at 5:30am for the wrestling team, and other high school athletes. After practice during the wrestling season, he spends a lot of his nights watching film, trying to get the best out of his athletes. He preaches goal setting and character development. This year he started using the Mental Mindset program, and scheduled weekly meetings for the wrestling team to. This year he also started a Leadership Program for the wrestling team, which met once a week throughout the season, and studied a book on leadership and character development. He has also gotten away from statistical awards at the end of the year, which focus on individuals. His award system now focuses on character and the team. He calls them the Pillar Awards, which focus on the following characteristics in athletes: Scholar, Confidence, Work Ethic, Discipline, Selflessness, Trustworthiness, Perseverance, Improvement, Leadership, Commitment, and Heart.
* Chas Treml - Luxemburg-Casco
7 individual State Place Winners Including one Champion. A Team State Title for Luxemburg-Casco for the first time in 5 seasons. Chas led his team through injuries and perseverance to get Luxemburg-Casco its 12th Team State title and His first as a Head Coach.
Gerald Hoerth - Chilton/Hilbert
Coach Hoerth did a outstanding job with his young team this year. He put together a 16-6 dual meet record and very high tour. finshes.The best is how he brought his team up at the end of the year to beat two ranked teams to win a trip to TAEM STATE!!!!! A job well done and is great standing for Coach of the year for District 4.
* Bob Empey/Dan Spilde - Stoughton In the 5th consecutive year of qualifying for team state and finishing as runner up for the last 3, Stoughton was able to win the D1 Team State Title. In order to do so, they did have to complete the 5,2,1 challenge with the new seeding process. The 2017-18 team was a balanced squad with depth that provided them options to become state champions. The season was not without challenges of one of the states toughest schedules and season of injuries that the team had to accommodate.
Jason Thiry - Prairie du Chien
Doug Forsythe - North Fond du Lac
* Chris Graziano - Slinger
2018 Conference Champions, 2018 Team State… Slinger has again risen as a dominant team in District 6 with quality wrestlers from top to bottom of their lineup. Terrific at developing depth and participation in their program.
* Tom Dineen - Marquette High School
First Regional Championship and first Wiaa D1 state finalist.
Terry Nachtigall - Oak Creek
Great coach of 22 years who has been instrumental in the consistent success Oak Creek has had for many years. Exactly the type of person you would want coaching your son or daughter.
Tim Pinter/Lino Martinez - Kenosha Christian Life School
Tim and Lino are the Co-Coaches at Kenosha Christian Life School. It is impossible to nominate one without the other. Both of these men have unbelievable work ethics, and boundless energy each day. Lino and Tim started our wrestling program seven years ago with NOONE who had ever wrestled before. They began with a conditioning and fundamental based approach to our young men. They then progressed to a much more comprehensive approach as our team developed.
These men will not stand for mediocre. Your effort, your approach, and your attitude must be exemplary to make it on the team. I have also never met more relational coaches than these two men. The boys LOVE spending time with their coaches, even when being whipped into shape.They are truly a family in our wrestling room. These men have created a culture of excellence and they LOVE their team. Each year at our wrestling banquet our boys share about their coaches and it is hard to find a dry eye in the room. The same goes for when the tough men stand before the banquet and talk about their team, never a dry eye in the room. The Love is evident.
This program has grown into a team that sends multiple individual wrestlers to state each year, and a team that was ONE match, One inch, and 3 points from qualifying for team state this year. The program was built on the blood, sweat, and tears of Lino Martinez and Tim Pinter.
* Randy Farrell - Nathan Hale
23-4 Dual Record, Greater Metro Dual Champions. Coached West Allis only 2x state champion. WWCA President
Shane Kennelly - Tech
Winning Milwaukee City Conference Tournament team title in back to back years as a head coach.
Kevin Koch - Concordia University Wisconsin
1st year Head Coach Kevin Koch made the transition from a successful High School Head Coach at Edgar to college Head Coach and led Concordia to a 6th-place finish in the CCIW Conference and 13th in the NCAA III Regional.
* Ben Chapman - Lakeland University
Because of Ben’s ongoing effort to advance the role of women’s wrestling Lakeland University will be starting the 1st College Women’s wrestling program in Wisconsin. Both Ben and his assistant Jared Schaft have worked endlessly with the administration to bring women’s wrestling to Wisconsin. I have witness their commitment to keeping our amazing Wisconsin women wrestlers in Wisconsin. Late hours on the phone, numerous school visits, attendance at state wrestling tournaments to recruit athletes to name a few.
Chris Rundquist/Mark Cowling - Neenah
Chris and Mark have done a fantastic job as assistant coaches in the Neenah Wrestling program. Chris and Mark have a combined 50 plus years of coaching experience in High School wrestling with over 40 years experience total in the Neenah Wrestling program. They have each made a lasting impact off the mat that has helped spearhead the growth of the Neenah Wrestling program. In 17-18 nearly 60% of the Neenah High School wrestling roster finished the semester with above a 3.0 cumulative GPA. The Rockets finished 8-1 in the FVA for the 2nd consecutive year and had an overall record of 14-5 this season with losses coming to D1 team state qualifiers Kaukauna, Stoughton, Marshfield, Mukwanago, and also a very good team in Waunakee. Neenah qualified a program record 6 individuals for the WIAA State Tournament and finished with the first champion in 10 yearswith Beau Yineman winning the 195 D1 State title. Chris and Mark have made a lasting impact in the lives of our student athletes and with their consistency and student first attitude I feel they are worth nominations for this years assistant coach of the year.
Mike Henschel - West Bend East
One of the key reasons West Bend East had its best season in 23 years. 12-4 dual record, 3rd in North Shore Conference, 3rd in Regionals, 2 individual tournament championships, 3 state qualifiers. Mike is looked at as a mentor to the student/athletes on the team both on and off the mat, comes in early every day to clean the room, set up everything for practice, open the weight room right after school for lifting prior to practice and set up individual improvement plans for each athlete on the team. He is always studying technique and developing curriculum and developing practice plans. He is an asset to me, the student/athletes and parents and we are looking to have him.
Johnny Gomez - Whitewater
I am nominating Johnny Gomez from Whitewater for the Assistant Coach of the Year Award. Coach Gomez has been a part of the whippet program since 2007 when he volunteered as a middle school coach. Since 2008 he has been an important piece of the high school program as the head assistant.
Coach Gomez goes above and beyond the duties as an assistant coach. He is always looking for ways to help each individual student-athlete improve by finding technique that fits their style of wrestling and will put them in the best spot to be successful. He also watches motivational videos to help inspire the student-athletes and help give them confidence throughout the season. As the head coach I have no worries if I have to have a meeting after school as I know that Coach Gomez will do an outstanding job running practice. Over the past year he has incorporated some drills that we have implemented that I believe are outstanding and will help our teams progress in years to come.
The impact of Coach Gomez was felt when he became a part of the Whitewater Middle School staff full time as a paraprofessional in the ESL department. He has been very influential in coordinating with the middle school coach, who is not in the building, in getting great numbers out for the middle school program. The middle school program has steadily been in the forty’s with one year pushing fifties. Coach Gomez is great about taking the time to go to each grade level to give wrestling a shot.
This year Coach Gomez has definitely gone above and beyond. Due to lack of parents wanting to coach the youth club Coach Gomez stepped up to help me run the youth club practices. He has been outstanding with the k-4 grade. I am amazed at how well he relates to that age level getting them excited each day for practice. He has set a goal that the students will have fun at every youth practice and will learn at least one wrestling term to share with their parents. The long term goal is to have the young wrestlers have the same terminology when they get to high school wrestling creating a situation where it is an easy transition from youth to middle school to high school.
Although the Whitewater Wrestling Program is not in the team sections every year I believe Coach Gomez is very deserving of the Assistant Coach of the Year award. He is in coaching for the student-athletes at all levels and does a great job promoting the sport of wrestling in the Whitewater community in a positive way. He is extremely reliable and will do what is best for the program and wrestling at all times 24/7, 12 months of the year.
Nick Reed - Arrowhead
Coach Reed has been at Arrowhead since 2002. During that time, the Warhawks have had numerous state qualifiers including 20 state finalists which includes 13 state champions. During this time, Arrowhead has also made it to team state 7 times and were team state finalists in 2005 and 2011.
This season, Arrowhead qualified 8 wrestlers to the state tournament, 4 of them made it to the finals and 2 were champions. Arrowhead also qualified for team state this year.
Carson Huppert - Ellsworth.
Instrumental in the success of the Ellsworth wrestling program year in and year out. If you take a look at the success this program has had the past 12 years, the one constant is his involvement in the program.
Mike Steffen - St Croix Falls.
Mike has been with St. Croix Falls wrestling for 14 years. During that time we have won over 170 matches, 5 conference titles, 5 regional titles, 1 sectional title. We were 18-1 this season and lost in state semis to Stratford.
Mike Buechler - Freedom
Mike Buechler is an amazing Assistant Coach at Freedom High School. Having a successful program takes lots of work from lots of people. Mike brings lots of experience to the coaching staff. Mike has been around wrestling for a long time and was previously the head coach at Freedom. His wealth of knowledge from technique, match strategy, practice structure, and ability to work with kids is a great asset to Freedom Wrestling. I think Mike Buechler is deserving of Assistant Coach of the Year!
Kane Krummel - Stratford
Coach Kane Krummel is the "man behind the scenes" for many years. He has been both my assistant, stepped in as Head Coach for two years, then Co-Head Coach, and back to assistant for Stratford Wrestling. He does not only what is asked of him, but goes above and beyond the duties of an assistant coach. Coach Krummel is willing to do much of the "paper work" that most Head coaches have a difficult time finding the hours to do. He asks for no credit. He quietly sits back and lets the kids collect their honors. I could not do my job nearly as well for a Head Coach without an assistant like Kane Krummel. He even goes so far as to keep minutes for Conference meetings, send emails to other schools, etc. He is truly a great candidate for Assistant Coach of the Year.
Mike Errthum - Mount Horeb
Mike is one of the most involved and passionate coaches in the state of WI. He’s the head middle school coach, assistant high school coach, youth coach, schoolgirl Freestyle coach, district 5 member, and volunteers at all of the WWF State tournaments
Abe Graziano - Fort Atkinson
Abe Graziano is the assistant every head coach would want. He is instrumental in every aspect of Fort Atkinson Wrestling. He is a tireless worker From running practices to organizing and an early season scrimmage and running multiple tournaments throughout the season (youth, JV and Varsity ). Abe has setup off season wrestling programs for his team, both at school and away. He is constantly recruiting kids in all the avenues available. He has secured clinicians, picked up kids, supervises open wrestling nights, designs and orders wrestling apparel, and had team picnics at his home. But most importantly Abe is a genuinely nice guy that they gets along great with kids and sets a great example for them.. This guy is a head coaches dream.
Steve Kurschner - Coulee Region Christian School
Only had one kid on the team they started this year and he won regionals.
1st year program And Steve was the one who made it happen, one kid on the team and he sacrificed hours/days towards giving that kid the best experience possible
Jason Welch - Auburndale
Jason is an assistant coach in youth , ms and hs wrestling. He a major component in reestablishing the wrestling club. He a great promoter of the sport. He is also a registered official. He is a very intense dedicated coach.
Kevin Pinter - Kenosha Christian Life
Kevin is our team strategist pouring over ways to make our team as successful as they can be on the mat. He spends countless hours researching and planning how best to attack each opponent, strategically placing our wrestlers in the most most beneficial matches for our team success.
Kevin works tirelessly with the lower weight classes on form, mental toughness, physical toughness and conditioning. We are a private Christian School and our mission statement is preparing our students to spiritually, academically, and socially impact their world for God. Kevin is a spiritual leader in our room leading our young men in devotions and prayer each week. He wants our team to be successful, however, he finds it even more important for our young men to be Godly leaders when they leave our wrestling room.
I believe Kevin is one of the finest coaches in our State. He is sought after and thankfully we have been able to keep him on our staff. He would been an outstanding recipient of this prestigious award.
Tim Gould and Karl Casper - Coleman
They go above and beyond for their athletes on and off the mat. They spend so much extra time teaching Wrestling and life lessons that really help to drive the success of that program year in and year out.
Peyton Mocco - West Allis Nathan Hale
Peyton is a 2X State Champion – Winning his second Title this season in one of the most anticipated match ups of returning State Champions in the DI – 160 lb. class. His season record of 54-1 brings his HS Career record to 176-15 - .921% Peyton is a 4X State Qualifier and 3X place winner. Peyton also excels in the classroom, as he is the valedictorian of the 2018 senior class. He has a 4.57 cumulative GPA. He has signed his National Letter of Intent to wrestle for the University of Missouri.
Aidan Medora - St. John's Northwestern Military Academy / Brookfield Academy
Sam Stuhl – Ellsworth
4X State Champion, Member of 2 team state championship teams, 1 runner-up. MN Christmas Tournament Champion. 4.0 cumulative GPA.132 lb. undefeated State Champion.
Drew Scharenbrock - Sun Prairie
Drew ended with a 51-0 record as a senior this past season. Not only is Drew an outstanding wrestler he is an outstanding person and student. His GPA is 3.972. Our staff has had the privilege of coaching him at the youth and high school level for 14 years. His passion for the sport of wrestling is clearly evident on a daily basis. He is always looking to improve as a wrestler by being a student of the sport. He is taking his passion for learning and wrestling to the next level at the University of Wisconsin. He was the champion at the Papermaker Invite, Bob Downing Scramble, Oshkosh on the Water Tournament, Bluejay Scramble, Badger Scramble, TKO, Big 8 Conference, Regionals, Sectionals, and State. He registered 36 pins on the season. He was named the Most Valuable Wrestler at the Papermaker, Bob Downing Scramble, and the Big 8 Conference tournament.
Jeremy Schoenherr - Stratford
4x state champ-Dominant. 4 X State Champ, 2nd at Fargo Junior Freestyle, WWF State Freestyle Champion, Super 32 All-American, and Badger commit.
Jeremy is the kid that not only has a 4.0 gpa, Volunteers at the hospital, Class Officer, officer of multiple other clubs, volunteers with the youth of Stratford Wrestling, mentors younger students. set up a school schedule to train this fall in Madison for wrestling, State Freestyle Champion, Fargo Finalist; he also became a four time state champion.
He is in our weight room most mornings between 5:00-5:30. He has gone above and beyond to continue to prepare himself and get better. He is a wonderful representative of what Wisconsin has as an outstanding wrestler. And, he is even a better "person" than a wrestler.
As the adage goes, “If you looked in the dictionary for reliability, there would be a picture of Jeremy next to it.” Both as an individual and as person, Jeremy demonstrates reliability daily. He is a 4x wrestling state champion (one of 16 in the history of our sport) and a Wisconsin Badger recruit. It requires intense discipline with diet, weight training, other workouts, practice time, etc. As impressive as that is, he maintains a high honors GPA 3.91, has a job, and volunteers many hours. He also is empathetic to those around him and takes the time to help those in need and do the right thing. 2 recent stories come to mind. First, we completed wrestling @ Coleman; ourparents/fans provided snacks and meals to the wrestlers for the long trip home. Jeremy true to his character and without prompting took 2 bags of homemade cookies over to the custodian working the evening shift and personally delivered and struck up a conversation with her. Second, our head coach relayed a story to fellow coaches of a story he had with a stranger. A woman was stranded on the side of the road with a flat tire. A young man seeing her distress, pulled over, changed her tire, and got her on the road again. The young man was Jeremy. Beyond the incredible wrestling talent, work ethic, discipline, and drive, I will most miss Jeremy for the high character and class individual that he is.
Keaton Kluever - Kaukauna
Keaton Kluever is a 2X D1 State Champion. Kluever is Nationally ranked by Trackwrestling, The Open Mat and InterMat. He finished his career with a 171 wins and a 103 pins. This season Keaton got bonus points in all of his victories but 1 match. What is more impressive is he bonus pointed 6 State qualifiers, 9 State place winners and 1 State Champion. Keaton became only the 2nd wrestler in WIAA Division 1 history to qualify 4 times at 285/heavyweight for the State Tournament.
Keaton is a four time state qualifier, three time team state champion, and two time state champion. He was as dominate as any wrestler at the state tournament scoring two majors and two pins. Keaton is also ranked nationally and will attend North Carolina to continue his career. Over this season 49 of his 50 wins he earned bonus points, including a major over Minnesota State runner up and pins over several state qualifiers from Iowa and Wisconsin.
Tate Murty - Cochrane Fountain City
Schools first ever state champ. Dominated his way through tournament.
Mason Phillips - Eau Claire North
First ever state champion for Eau Claire North. Four-time state placewinner..
Eric Barnett - Hortonville
As only a Junior Eric became a Two time State Champion this year. Eric has been one of the most Dominant wrestlers in our State over the past two season, going undefeated as a Sophomore and a Junior. He is currently on a 94 match win streak, and has a high school record to date of 138-3. Eric is an excellent teammate who works to improve everyone in the room, and is just as invested in his teammates success as he is his own. He also is a great role model for all of our youth wrestlers. Eric goes out of his way to talk and work with them and has a great relationship with them. Eric is currently ranked #3 in the country and has given a verbal commitment to the University of North Carolina.
Curtis Fiedler - River Valley
Young coach that is looking towards progressing Wrestling and setting it up for a successful future. Curtis Fielder has done a tremendous job over the past several years not only helping to build River Valley back into a statewide power, but he's also worked tirelessly to promote the sport of wrestling. Whether he's doing interviews or broadcasts of the State Individual or Team tournament, or talking current issues with coaches from around the state, Curtis is the kind of person that our association needs to bring both fresh ideas and a willingness to dig into the needs of our sport.
He's a young coach who has served as both an assistant coach and referee and so he possesses lots of experience and perspectives that will help guide his time as a district rep. We need to start adding new blood into the mix, bringing fresh ideas and a new outlook. I can't think of too many others that would be better candidates for this office.
Jason Thiry - Prairie du Chein.
His involvement in wrestling in his community has shown over the past few years with is program's climb upward. Would be a great addition to the WWCA Board to help the sport of wrestling grow in Wisconsin.
Troy Clary - Ithaca/Westin
Has been head wrestling coach and/or assistant wrestling coach at Ithaca for over 20 years. Troy has a real passion for the sport of wrestling. He would be an excellent leader for this position. Please give him every consideration.
Ryan Gerber - Fort Atkinson.
Ryan has been the Head Coach at Fort Atkinson High School for the past 9yrs. In that time he consistently maintains 30 athletes and is competitive every year in the very tough Badger Conference. He is an extremely organized coach and is heavily involved with the youth and middle school programs. He is also the tournament director of 5-7 different tournaments throughout the wrestling season. He certainly has the ability to bring a positive influence to the WWCA.
Doug Forsythe - North Fond du Lac High School.