NEW CONCORD -- After delaying college for one year following an outstanding wrestling career and graduation at Salem High, Shain Hostetter is finding continued success on the mat in his freshman year at Muskingum College.
The 5-foot-8 Hostetter already has one of the best records in the 125-pound class of the Ohio Athletic Conference at 17-8, including a perfect 4-0 in the OAC.
While at Salem, he compiled a four-year record of 99-21, including 37-6 as a senior.
His goal this year is to "make All-American," he declared.
Eyes OAC title: To do that, Hostetter first has to win the OAC championship Feb. 23 at Ohio Northern, in order to qualify for the NCAA Division III National Championships.
And then at the national finals, he will have to finish in the top eight to make All-American.
"I took a year off after high school just to work with my little brother [Lonn], just staying in shape," said Shain, who trained with Lonn during the latter's eighth-grade wrestling season at Salem Junior High.
"He's basically my drill partner. I wrestle against him. He is 112," said Shain, noting that Lonn is now a freshman member of the Salem High wrestling team.
"Some of my plans fell through," said Shain for the reason he took a year off. "I decided to attend Muskingum last summer."
His strengths: Hostetter credits his conditioning, style of wrestling and adaptability to opponents for his early prosperity at Muskingum.
"I'm in better shape to go the whole match. Everybody else dies out in the third period. My conditioning enabled me to wear my opponents down," said Hostetter, noting that he has an unorthodox style.
"My style of wrestling is unique and hard to adapt to. You don't see it much. It's a little bit of everything."
He believes he is improving because he wrestles year-round. He is most effective on the mat when he is on his feet.
"I'm good on my feet. I try to stay on my feet as much as possible. I can get takedowns better when I'm on my feet," he explained.
The Muskingum team compiled a 7-8 dual-meet record, including 2-2 in the OAC, entering last weekend's competition.
Academics: Hostetter, the son of Becky and Lonnie Hostetter, is majoring in middle childhood education with minors in English and social studies. He has about a 2.4 grade-point average.
In addition to his sparkling record at Salem under coaches Len Carrion and Chuck Brant, Hostetter was a three-time selection to the Eastern Ohio Wrestling League first team and a three-time state qualifier.
He also was EOWL Wrestler of the Year in Division II, and placed sixth in the state in his junior year, and was MIT Tournament champ as a senior.
College circuit: Also wrestling in the OAC is Thad Poweski, a junior for John Carroll from Warren JFK High. Poweski has a 5-4 record.
In tennis, Erin Sunseri is a sophomore on the Walsh University women's team from Boardman High.
Sunseri achieved a 15-3 record in singles and 8-5 mark in doubles last season, and made the All-Mideast Conference doubles team.
Sunseri combined with sophomore Melissa Wilson for a 3-0 doubles mark.
In track, Justin Miller, a sophomore on the Baldwin-Wallace indoor team from Austintown Fitch High, has qualified provisionally for the Division III national meet.
Miller qualified in the 55-meter hurdles in 7.76 seconds, as the Yellow Jackets won the six-team B-W "Sparky" Adams Invitational.
At Mount Union, Damon Dixon, a senior on the indoor track team from East High, won the 55- and 200-meter dashes at the non-scoring Case Western Reserve meet.
In the women's side of the meet, Holly Friedrich, a senior for Mount Union from Boardman High, won the 5,000-meter run.