The 2001-2002 season turned out to be an
exciting season. It was also a season that most wrestling
programs would consider a success. The Lancer wrestling
team started the year with a roar by winning the Tom Carr
tournament. Two dual meet wins followed before a disappointing
loss to Erie Prep. The Lancers just looked flat in that
match and the wrestlers were still trying to find their
The G.M. wrestlers rattled off 5 more dual
wins and an impressive 7th place finish at the grueling
Tool City Tourney, before tasting defeat again to county
rival, Ft. LeBoeuf. The Lancers suffered a loss to the Bisons
by the narrowest margin in years.
The only other loss of the season came at
the hands of a very talented Titusville squad in the District
10 duals. The G.M. Matmen finished the year with an impressive
12-3 record, their best since they went 14-1 and won the
ECL Championship in 1996-97.
Eight Lancers made the All-ECL Team: Luke
Harrison (130) - 1st Team, Hayden Harrison (135)
- 1st Team, Branden Stearns (160) - 2nd Team, Hudson
Harrison (145) - 2nd Team,
Jake Keene (119) - 2nd Team, Tim Shrout (112)
- Honorable Mention, Ward McCracken (140) - Honorable
Mention, Pat Knaus (160) - Honorable Mention.
Even more exciting, is the fact that only
3 seniors starters were part of this year's squad. Some
new talent emerged to fuel the Lancer effort. Freshman,
Branden Stearns proved that he is ready to leave
his mark by making the District 10 finals and rattling off
an amazing 21 wins.
Freshman, Travis Goss made the varsity
squad for part of the season and showed that he can hold
his own. Travis who tipped the scales at 173 lbs.,
went 7-5 and wrestled most of those matches against 189
lbs. competitors. Travis also went 2-2 at AAU Nationals,
finishing in the top 8. In July of 2002, Goss garnered All-American
honors when he placed 5th at the National High School Coaches
Open Wrestling Championships in Norfolk, VA.
Freshman, John Heynoski took 2nd
at the Tom Carr tournament. He won nearly half of his matches
at 103, even though most of his foes outweighed him by 8-10
lbs. He will only get bigger and better. John went 2-2 at
AAU Nationals in one of the tournaments toughest divisions.
Ashton Osterburg and Denton Sauers saw plenty
of J.V. action. Both are solid wrestlers and will see action
at the varsity level before long.
Sophomore, Jake Keene improved tremendously
this year. He was just one victory shy of the 20 win mark
and took 3rd at Tom Carr and District 10 tournaments. Sophomore
Hayden Harrison had a fantastic year. He won Tom
Carr tournament, was 2nd at Tool City and 4th at Seneca
Valley. He won the District 10 tournament, was NW Regional
runner-up and went 1-2 at states. He also shattered Tommy
Kirdahy's single season takedown record of 102, by notching
Junior, Luke Harrison led the team
in falls with 14. He won 22 matches, finished 3rd at Tom
Carr, 2nd at Districts and went 3-2 at regionals against
some tough competition. Luke may very well break the 30
win mark next season. Hudson Harrison had 27 wins.
He won the Tom Carr tournament and was District 10 runner
up, narrowly losing to two-time state qualifier, Chad Sutliff
in the finals. He finished fourth at the NW Regional tournament,
a one point loss is all that kept him from qualifiying for
the state tourney. Hudson should win 30+ matches
Junior, Josh Grabski also showed
tremendous improvement this year. Josh had a respectable
11-8 record at a very tough 189 lbs. weight class. He finished
4th at Districts. Wayne Gormont was a solid wrestler
at heavyweight. He won 18 matches (13 by fall). He won the
Tom Carr tournament and was 5th at Tool City. He should
easily win 20+ matches next season. Junior, Ryan Dunlap
won 24 matches this year and showed he can wrestle with
the best of them. Ryan finished 3rd at Tom Carr and
Districts. He went 2-2 at regionals. Ryan is capable
of winning 30 matches next year. Tim Shrout had a
disappointing post-season, but he wrestled very well this
year, winning 17 matches, finishing 3rd at Tom Carr and
making the All-ECL team.
Senior, Pat Knaus came into his own
this year. Pat won 22 matches and was selected to
the All-County squad. He won the Tom Carr tournament, was
4th at Seneca Valley and 6th at Tool City. He also placed
3rd at the District 10 tournament and was a regional qualifier.
Nate Saraceno won 10 matches and took 4th at Tom
Carr, in a tough weight class (125). Nate did a great
job considering his weight. Most of his competitors outweighed
him by 8-10 lbs. He showed a lot of courage, staying off
his back against some of the region's most talented wrestlers.
Senior, Ward McCracken who was a
late starter this year, went 12-7 in what may have been
the District's toughest weight class, 140. Ward was
on fire at the Seneca Valley tournament where he lost his
first match, then came roaring back to take 3rd. Most of
Ward's losses this year were by close margins to very tough
competitors. He was an extremely hard worker in the practice
room and will be missed.
Next year's team should be even better.
Some very talented freshmen will give next year's squad
some needed depth at the light weights again. Look for the
2002-2003 Lancer matmen to challenge for the Erie County
title and send more than one wrestler to the state tournament.