OA Wrestling Looking to Improve on Last Season's Success
With veteran leadership and strong rookie class, wrestling squad looking to make an impact in sixth season of varsity status.
At the end of last year, the Oliver Ames wrestling program transitioned itself from a dual-meet squad to a tournament team.
Entering year six at the helm, head coach Adam Pomella hopes for his team to sustain its tournament success and improve on its dual-meet record.
“I think we’ll be a good mix this year between tournament and dual-meet,” he said. “We have a ton of rookies who are looking phenomenal this year, so I think our dual-meet will be better than it was last year. But we are still looking for some kids to make some real, deep tournament runs.”
With a lot of youth injected into the program and a healthy mix of veterans, the Tigers will look to take advantage of their depth.
Gone from last year’s squad is Billy Greene, Zach MacKeen, Max Jacobs and Erik Brugnoli-Ensin, just to name a few.
Returning this year, however, are captains Nick Hutchinson (166 lb. class), Matt Harding (182), Mitch Gadless (170) and junior Josh Stern (138).
Harding, who won gold at the Bay State games, is ranked fourth in the state for his weight class.
“He’s looking to improve on his ranking from where he is right now,” Pomella said about Harding. “Several of our kids are looking forward from the momentum they sustained last year.”
This year’s freshmen, like Matt Wiseman and Jameson Dixon are already looking to make their marks in their first season.
“The rookies altogether look great this year,” Pomella said.
The Tigers host the OA opener against Randolph and Scituate on Saturday to begin the 2011-12 season.
While looking for both team and individual success this weekend, Pomella also hopes that the veterans shake off some rust and the rookies show even more promise.
“I would love to see our team win [the OA opener] and take a lot of individual titles out of that,” Pomella said. “The thing I’m looking for the most is for the veterans to knock some rust off and a bunch of rookies who are looking to step up and show us that they deserve to be in the lineup.”
Despite some tough competition in the Hockomock League, including league power Franklin in the Kelley-Rex division and Davenport foe Foxborough, OA’s strength and numbers give Pomella a reason for optimism this winter.
“We have huge numbers this year and we look like we have a great team,” Pomella said.
“We have a great group of athletes this year. This is the most athletic I have ever seen from this team and I think the coaching is getting tighter and tighter each year…we have the largest coaching staff that we’ve ever had and I think we can do some great things.”
Wrestling quick facts
Head coach: Adam Pomella
Captains: Nick Hutchinson, Matt Harding, Mitch Gadless, Josh Stern
Key Returnees: Hutchinson, Harding, Gadless, Stern, Jake McCabe,
Key Losses: Billy Green, Zach MacKeen, Max Jacobs, Erik Brugnoli-Ensin
- Dec. 10 OA opener
- Dec. 14 vs. Stoughton
- Dec. 19 vs. North Attleboro
- Dec. 23 Marshfield Invitational
- Jan. 4 vs. Franklin
- Jan. 11 vs. Foxborough
- Jan. 18 at Canton
- Jan. 25 vs. King Philip
- Jan. 28 Hock Championships
- Jan. 31 at Mansfield
- Feb. 4 Sectionals
- Feb. 10 and 11 Class Meets
- Feb. 19 and 20 State Meet
- Feb. 24 and 25 All-States