GALION — The Galion Tigers wrestling squad will hit the mats this season coming off a third-place finish behind the River Valley Vikings and Pleasant Spartans last season in the Mid-Ohio Athletic Conference.
They will do so under the familiar leadership of head coach Brent Tyrrell.
Tyrrell, entering his ninth season as the Tigers’ leader, hopes to continue to improve the program despite the loss of two key pieces of last season’s successful campaign..
Gone to graduation are Garrett Kuns and Cody Brady.
Kuns won the MOAC championship in the 170-pound weight class and was a state qualifier for the Galion Tigers. Brady was a three-year starter on the roster and wrestled his way to fifth a year ago in the MOAC in the 126-pound class.
The Tigers’ other state qualifier will be back on the mat for his senior season though to anchor the veterans for Tyrrell’s Tigers. Mason Weldon returns as is ready to clash with his fellow heavyweights after a MOAC runner-up finish a season ago.
Galion also willhave three district qualifiers back on the mats for its 2017-18 campaign.
Noah Grocholwalski, a junior, was an MOAC champion in the 195-pound class; MOAC runner-up in the 106-pound class, junior Brenden Ganshorn returns; as does MOAC fourth-place finisher in the 160-pound class, sophomore Matt Oehlri.
Those three return even more experience for the Tigers.
Galion has a total of eight returning letterwinners headed to the mats and will be joined by a slew of freshmen.
“We have a good group of 10 freshmen and we will look to get as many of them in as possible,” said Tyrrell. “They are going to be asked to step up and make an impact for our team by the end of the season.
”We have some good leadership with all of the guys coming back. They have had a lot of success and understand the price that you have to pay to gain it.”
The MOAC will be a tough run again this season as the River Valley squad eyes their fourth consecutive league title, but the Tigers will look to make a run behind theexperience and leadership that they have, despite their lack of depth in general terms.
Galion will kick-off that run by hosting a non-league match against Ridgedale and Willard on Wednesday, Dec. 6 in the high school gymnasium.