GWU Wrestling Team Shows Promise with New Head Coach and Player Rankings

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Gardner-Webb Wrestling Program Has Plenty to Celebrate On and Off the Mat

BOILING SPRINGS, N.C. – Excitement is building toward the Gardner-Webb University Wrestling Team 2012-13 season with the announcement of a new head coach and four of its wrestlers named in pre-season regional rankings.

In the spring, the Gardner-Webb Athletics Department named Daniel Elliott as head coach of the Wrestling program.  Elliott, a former GWU wrestler himself, had served as the associate head coach of the GWU Wrestling program the past two seasons and has been on the coaching staff for seven years in all.  Elliott replaced legend Dick Wince, who retired at the end of the 2011-12 season after 22 years on the job.

In an interview with GWU Athletics, Elliott remarked, “Gardner-Webb holds a very special part of my heart.  I have been associated with this university for over 10 years, starting as a student and now becoming the head coach of the wrestling program.  I believe wholeheartedly in the mission of the school, the athletic department and the wrestling program.”

During his career as a Runnin’ Bulldogs wrestler, Elliott was a two-time NCAA Qualifier, as well as a two-time regional champion at 149 pounds.  He finished his senior season with a record of 39-2 and was ranked 10th in the nation in the final standings.  Elliott holds the GWU record for career wins, single-season wins and consecutive wins.  He also led the team in each of his last three seasons in the category of takedowns.  Elliott graduated in 2006 with a double major in history and communications before going on to earn a Masters in Sports Sciences and Pedagogy—also from GWU—in 2008.

This month, team members Justin Guthrie, Justin Kozera, Alex Medved, and Travis Porter were named to the, the Atlantic Regional Division 1 Summer Rankings that lists all wrestlers in the East and South regions, as well as all 10 weight classes.

In the rankings, Medved, a senior from Acworth, Ga., came in at 19th overall in the 157-pound category.  In 2011, Medved was also named to the National Wrestling Coaches Association National Academic All-American list, one of only 92 student-athletes across the nation to receive this honor.  Guthrie, a senior from Candler, N.C., and Porter, a senior from Middlefield, Ohio, both came in 22nd overall at 165 and 197 pounds, respectively.  Rising sophomore and heavyweight Kozera, of Taneytown, Md., received recognition and was ranked 25th at 285 pounds.  Last season, Medved and Guthrie each posted 19 overall wins to lead the team.

More information about the GWU Wrestling team and this year’s season, beginning in November, is available at 704-406-4340 and online at

Located in Boiling Springs, N.C., Gardner-Webb University offers a comprehensive academic experience that introduces students to the diverse world of ideas and to the people who think them, preparing them for career success and for engaged, responsible citizenship in their professional, civic, and spiritual communities.