Part one of two: The Penn wrestling team has a slew of Red-and-Blue-chippers with which to build on its ninth-place finish at last year's Nationals.
This fall, Penn coach Roger Reina will welcome his most talented recruiting class to date. Included in the bunch are six state championship winners, two state Wrestlers of the Year and two High School Senior National champions.
The 14 incoming freshmen will add depth to a squad that graduates four starters -- Jason Nagle (133 pounds), Jonathan Gough (149), National Champ Brett Matter (157) and All-American heavyweight Bandele Adeniyi-Bada.
Mike Faust may have been Reina's biggest score this offseason -- literally.
The Baltimore native -- who twice won the national prep school championship while at the Gilman School --ÿis ranked the No. 1 heavyweight recruit in the country.
Another Maryland state champion, Jeff Eveleth, will be joining the Quakers. Eveleth twice won the state crown, went undefeated his senior year and lost only eight matches in his entire high school career.
Eveleth, who will compete in the 125- or 133-pound weight classes, is the younger brother of Brian Eveleth, who wrestled at Penn from 1992-1996.
Reina pulled off a minor coup in getting Kyle Bernholz to sign at Penn. Bernholz's older brother Ryan is a standout at archrival Lehigh.
But the New York state sixth-place finisher is slated to challenge freshman standout Jody Giuricich for time at 141 pounds, or else compete for Gough's vacated 149-pound spot.
Giuricich will also hear Doug McGraw knocking at his door.
The Emporium, Pa., native went 42-0 as a senior at Cameron County High School. McGraw won the Senior Nationals with a pin and five decisions.
Penn welcomes three other recruits from Pennsylvania: Jamin Casciato, Rob Dolan and Dan Mousetis.
Casciato, projected to wrestle at 133 pounds, was a First Team All-State academic team selection in addition to being being a section-IV-AAA champ at Pittsburgh's Fox Chapel Area school.
Dolan went 16-2 at Indiana Area High School before suffering a season-ending injury.
Another 133-to-141-pounder, Dan Mousetis placed seventh at the state championships while at Washington High in Washington, Pa.
Next week, meet the other seven Penn recruits and get coach Roger Reina's reaction.Comments powered by Disqus
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