For the first time in 28 years, somebody other than Greg Stolfer will be the Warriors’ chief.
But Wes Cleveland is no newcomer. Cleveland was a member of one of Stolfer’s first Edgewood teams. He was in the wrestling room in the 90s grappling with the upper weights in attempt to help them improve. Most recently, he’d been Stolfer’s right-hand man.
The Edgewood philosophy won’t change much. And the key to that philosophy and the Warriors’ success is hard work.
“Our key is getting good, solid practice time in,” Cleveland said.
In his first season at the helm, Cleveland inherits eight returning letterwinners — seven of which are sophomores or juniors.
James Lyle (160-170) is the lone senior who claimed a letter last season. He is joined by juniors Jeron Ellis (132), Anthonie Magda (160) and Jarrod Harrah (195) and sophomores Jarrod Elrod (152), Tyler DuFour (138), Nick Camp (220) and David Ellis (138).
Nothing as far as the Warriors’ lineup is close to being set in stone. Nobody will have a have spot on the team until each weight is won through challenges at practice.
Through that process new faces will emerge to assist the older ones. Cleveland will hold true to the schedule Stolfer had assembled in previous seasons.
“Our schedule is about the same as in the past,” Cleveland said. “We have the same big tournaments.”
Eight grapplers return to an Eagles’ squad that finished second in the Premier Athletic Conference last season.
Back are seniors Christopher Warner (120), Dakota Brininger (132), Justin Ales (220) and Geoff Chapman (145), juniors Jason Huelskamp (180), James Hawk (195) and Tyler Cross (138) and sophomore Zachary Elliott (120).
Coach Tony Barszczewski is looking for the Eagles to be in good shape and to be offensive rather than defensive while on the mat.
“Conditioning is No. 1 (as a key to our success),” he said. “Like last year, we are spending a good part of our practice on takedowns and being aggressive.”
Like at Edgewood, the makeup of the Eagles’ lineup has yet to come together.