The Lancer wrestling team kicks off their 2019-20 season this week backed by significant program growth, an expanded coaching staff and a strong vision that looks to propel the group to new milestones of success.
Head coach Joe List, who was recognized earlier this fall by the Orange County Athletic Directors Association as a Coach of Character, is in his sixth year at the helm. He is joined by OLu alumni and former Lancer wrestlers Ryan List and Zach Strickland. List has also added former collegiate wrestler and current professional MMA fighter Heber Castillo, who will serve as the program’s technical director.
“He is the technical leadership of the team,” says List of Castillo. “He brings in an ability to connect with young people that I’ve never seen before. It’s off the charts.”
The offseason also saw the addition of several new wrestlers to the team, bringing the roster to more than 20, nearly doubling last year’s numbers. Additionally, many team members competed in elite national tournaments over the summer and achieved significant success.
List is looking for key performances from senior Jacob Solkamans (170 lbs.) and junior Zack Stone (122 lbs.), both of whom serve as co-captains for the Lancers. Junior Alexander Subias (115 lbs.) and sophomore Dominic Lobo (126 lbs.) are also poised to have breakout seasons.
On the girls’ side of the program, sophomore Kasey Schafer represented the Lancers at CIF last season and is working to better her placement this year.
The varsity squad will begin competition this weekend at the Costa Mesa Classic, and as the group continues to build upon their growth, the future looks bright for the Lancers on the mat.
“Creating what we have created, from a cultural and organizational standpoint,” says List, “and putting the right people in the right positions, it has sent [the program] skyrocketing.”