SVSJ preview: MSHS wrestling season expected to be strong as it welcomes in new coach who is no stranger to success on mat

EDITOR’S NOTE: We finish our winter high school sports preview series with a look at Mount Si High School wrestling as it begins life under new head coach Josh Mitchell.

Mount Si High School’s wrestling program made a coaching change in the offseason, as veteran head man Tony Schlotfeldt left his coaching post and was replaced by a former Wildcat star wrestler under his predecessor.

Josh Mitchell, who won the state title at 285 lbs. in his senior year at Mount Si in 2011, is the new head man for the Wildcat grapplers. Fresh out of college and also off his first season as an assistant coach with Mount Si’s football program, Mitchell is thrilled to be a part of the program once again. “It’s something I’ve been really passionate about my whole life,” he said. “I’m glad I get to give back and I’m just with a great group of kids up here. Man, they make my job so fun.”

Mitchell inherits a roster that’s full of senior leaders who all will aim for one last trip to Mat Classic, the WIAA’s state high school wrestling tournament, at the Tacoma Dome in March of next year. Among them is Mason Marenco, who is expected to compete in the middle-weight classes after making state at 152 lbs. last season. He thinks the team could be loaded with talent. “We’ve got some young guys that are really working hard and are getting a lot better, so I think overall our depth should be pretty good this year,” he said. Also back to comprise the senior group are Henry Foster, Brennan Dalgleish, Jack Hamerly, and Shane Moses. Dalgleish made state at 195 lbs. last season. Also back for the Wildcats this winter is sophomore Spencer Marenco, Mason’s younger brother, who also made a state appearance last season competing at 126 lbs.

The new coach expects Kingco to be tough, but for his squad to be very competitive. Issaquah and Skyline are likely to be the conference favorites, but the coach has a goal in mind for his group. “I expect the team to compete for a Kingco title,” Mitchell said. He adds his senior class will be the key to everything. “They are. They’re such a good group of leaders. They come in and they work every single day. Our team is going to go as far as those guys go,” the coach said.

In addition to the Kingco contests, the Wildcats have put together a strong schedule of tournaments as well. The featured tournaments are the Spud Walley event in Sedro Woolley December 10 and the El Cajon Invitational the next weekend, December 16 and 17, in San Diego. The last time Mount Si was down there, in 2012, the Wildcats held up quite well with a top-10 team finish, so it’s expected Mount Si should be able to repeat that feat once again this time around.

The regionals this year on the way to the T-Dome are against teams from the new North Puget Sound League, and Mitchell expects Tahoma to be a tough regional foe for Mount Si at that level of postseason competition.

For Mason Marenco, success is all in the work ethic. “For me, it’s just making sure I’m working hard all the time,” he said.

Mount Si will have just two home meets on the schedule this season, both in January. Mitchell has this message for fans. “Come out and support the team,” he said. “We’re pushing ourselves every day. We want to put a good product out there for fans to see.” Those two meets are on January 19 and 24, with the 24th being Senior Night. The season opens with a jamboree tomorrow, then their first tournament gets competition under way officially this coming Saturday, December 3. They will be competing at the Patriot Dome tournament in Pierce County, hosted by Washington High School in Parkland. Home meets at Mount Si begin at 7:00 p.m.

Rhett Workman

About Rhett Workman

Rhett Workman is the editor of the Snoqualmie Valley Sports Journal. Workman is a veteran sports journalist, having covered Snoqualmie Valley sports for nearly a decade with the Snoqualmie Valley Record newspaper before starting up the SVSJ. Workman's coverage has earned the support and respect of Valley coaches, players, parents and fans, and the SVSJ continues the standard of coverage that Workman brought to the Valley Record.
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