GLEN RIDGE, NJ--The Glen Ridge High wrestling team is off to a good start in the 2019-2020 season.
Head coach Kendall Southerland saw his team perform well at tournaments in Irvington and Carteret, as well as the team's first dual match, against Columbia. The Irvington tournament opened the season on Dec. 21, while the Ridgers competed at the Rahway tourney, in Carteret, on Dec. 28.
The team is back in action on Jan. 4, in a quad tournament, at Newark Academy, in Livingston, starting at 11 a.m. On Jan. 5, the team visits Newark East Side, at 5 p.m.
While the Ridgers don't have a large roster, the team is putting together some good performances.
"I like what I'm seeing so far," said Southerland. "We're young, we only have one senior, and the kids are improving with each day."
James McCarren, a sophomore, has been outstanding in the early part of the season. Wrestling at 182 pounds, McCarren won championships at the Irvington and Rahway Tournaments, and won his match against Columbia.
Dean Geraci, a junior, has also wrestled well. He finished second at Irvington and Rahway, at 195 pounds. Iain Shaw, the lone starting senior and a team captain, won gold at the Irvington tourney, in the 170-pound category, and also wrestled well at Rahway.
"We're pretty strong at 170, 182 and 195 pounds," said Southerland. "There's good competition there and those guys will be looking to do well in matches and tournaments."
Jesse Samuelson, who advanced to the regions last season, has been hampered by an ankle injury, but hopes to be back in the lineup soon.
"We thought it would be better to give Jesse some time to get healthy, instead of putting him in tournaments, and risking further injury," said Southerland.