SEASON PREVIEW: LAKEVIEW
The Sailors of Coach Eric Mount have come a long way, finishing second to Reynolds in the Section 3-AA Tournament for the last three seasons. Does the "bridesmaid" role bother Mount?
"There's nothing wrong with finishing second to Reynolds," said Mount, a former assistant with the Raiders. "Our goal is to compete with them. If my team wrestles as good as they do, it's quite an accomplishment. We had a couple of section champs last year, which was nice and all the kids are coming back so they know what the competition is like.
"We strive to meet the competition. If you don't work for those goals, you won't get any better. It's good to have a team like Reynolds around to give us something to shoot for.
"My compliments to Coach Brian Hills and his crew for the program they have and for what will be their 500th win this season."
Mount welcomed back a solid group from last season, led by two-time state qualifier Drew Rose, the District 10 champion who earned an eighth place last season at 119 at Hershey.
Cody Smith was a state qualifier while Tim Gadsby was a regional qualifier. Evan Hoobler, who was injured, and Brad Watson were district qualifiers.
"We have a pretty good nucleus," said Mount.
Sophomore Gadsby will kick off the matches for the Sailors at 103, with sophomore letterman Chad Smith at 112.
Sophomore Jay Brownlee is at 119, while senior Ryan Kerr fills the 125 slot. Rose, a senior, will start the season at 130.
Sophomore Smith will be at 135, with sophomore letterman Wade Alexander at 140.
Nate Benninger, junior letterman, will be at 145, with senior Hoobler at 152.
Senior Rob Watson will be at 160, followed by junior lettermen Jerry Drew and Deke Ison at 171 and 189 respectively. Brad Watson again will mop up at 275.
Some others fighting for varsity spots are freshman Adam Reddinger, 103; freshman Scott Peterson, 119; freshman Leo Pivirotti, 125; junior Brandon Harrah, 160; and sophomore Terry Shearer, 275.
"I think were going to be competitive," said Mount. "We're pretty strong from 103 to 152. We have some guys that need to pick it up in the upper weights and then we have Brad to finish off at heavyweight.
"Our league (French Creek Valley Conference) is very competitive. Cochranton has a nice team, Maplewood has a nice team and Jamestown has put together something up there," he said. "We definitely have some talent. I think we're going to see a great year from Evan Hoobler, the last two years he has been hampered by injury."
Mount will be assisted by Joe Fiorenza, Rusty Wright, A.J. Walton, Dave Hoobler and Les Dye, with Adam Lewis heading the elementary program.
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