Western Wayne's talented young grapplers ran roughshod over their competition this winter
Over the course of the past several seasons, Western Wayne's wrestling program has taken its rightful place among the Commonwealth elite.
Coach Dante Terenzio's varsity squad dominates the Lackawanna League's Division Two and has also won three District Two duals championships in the past four years.
That success doesn't just happen, it's nurtured from elementary school right up to the varsity ranks.
Case in point: the 2012-13 junior high team.
Under the direction of Coach Dan Trygar, these young Wildcat grapplers have just recently put the finishing touches on an unforgettable season.
"This is just a great group of kids," Coach Trygar said of his 'Cats. "We're a pretty young team, but all of these kids worked really hard from our first practice right up to the last match."
All that dedication and hard work paid huge dividends as Western Wayne rolled to a dazzling 25-4 overall record.
In addition, the Wildcats cruised to a perfect record and a Lackawanna League Division Two title.
"I'm very proud of them," Coach Trygar said. "They were a lot of fun to work with. I can't wait to see how they do once they get up to the varsity team."
Western Wayne opened its season with a 4th place showing at the Lackawanna Trail Invitational back in early December.
From there, the Wildcats kept building momentum from week to week.
According to Coach Trygar, the team's signature win of the regular season came in Lackawanna League action against longtime rival Honesdale.
The two teams squared off in the Maple City and Western Wayne eventually emerged with a 46-30 win.
"That was really big for us," Coach Trygar said. "It's been quite a long time since we beat Honesdale and the kids were really pumped."
The Wildcats parlayed that momentum into a late season run that ended with several team titles.
On Feb. 22, the local lads traveled to Delaware Valley to compete in the regional championships. There, the 'Cats dominated the day, piling up 325 team points to cop the crown.
West Scranton finished a distant second with 270.
Coach Trygar's squad then trekked to Lake Lehman on March 1 for a district-wide tournament and came away with a third place showing. The 'Cats trailed only the host Black Knights and Dallas Area in the final overall standings.
Western Wayne wrestlers also made a name for them selves at individual events this winter.
At the PA junior district qualifier in Tunkhannock, five Wildcats earned places on the dais.
Evan Hoherchak led the way with a gold medal in the 70-pound bracket. The 7th grader posted impressive wins in both the semis and finals to finish first.
Braden MacIntosh came within a whisker of gold as well. Another talented 7th grader. MacIntosh earned a silver medal at 100.
Eighth graders Harrison Clookey (130) and Matthew Trygar (138) each took a third place medal.
Christian Wayda rounded out the medals haul with a 4th place showing at 75.
This quintet of grapplers advanced to the regional tournament, which was hosted by Williamsport Area last weekend. Only the top two in each weight class qualified for states.
Hoherchak authored the top finish there, battling his way to a bronze medal.
MacIntosh, Clookey and Wayda each finished 4th.
All told, Hoherchak and Cole Fuller were the team's top two individuals over the course of the entire season.
Hoherchak closed out his campaign with a 19-2 mark. Fuller, who is still just a 7th grader, ran wild en route to a 20-1 record at 155.