Led by state medalist Jan Johnson, the Governor Mifflin High School wrestling team is back for a new season. The Mustangs do have some talent back from last year, but they will a young squad of mostly untested juniors and sophomores.
'At this point, what we lack in experience, over time, our work ethic, commitment and dedication should enable us to be competitive at the county and district levels,' said head coach Ralph Voit.
Last year, the team was 5-1 in the Berks League, and sent two wrestlers to the state tournament in Hershey - the two Johnson cousins, Jan and Marcus. Jan was lost to graduation, but Jan will be back after winning a district gold and a third place medal at the state tournament at the 195 pound weight class.
A season like that will be tough to improve upon, but he has been working hard to do just that. But they will need more than just Johnson if they want to compete for the division or league championship this year.
Keith Miller will help the cause. Last year, at 285 pounds, Miller made it all the way to the district tournament where he went 1-2. He's back with the goal of getting to the state tournament.
Jonah Fisher will be back at 132 or 128 pound weight class. He also was a district qualifier, getting to the semifinals of the 120 pound class last year. He was stopped there and finished in sixth place, not high enough to qualify for states. He wants to fix that this year.
Also back this year will be Jonah Fisher (132 or 138) and Gibriel Toure (220).
Despite the fact that this will mostly be a young and inexperienced team, the Mustangs' goal is to win the league championship and qualify for districts as a team. This is a program that contends every year, the team doesn't believe this year will be any different.
'For us to reach our goals, our youngsters are going to have to respond positively and grow as individuals and as a team from the adversity that we are going to face this year,' said Voit.