YORK, Pa. – Adding even more to a tremendous 2011-2012 campaign, York College wrestling assistant coach Duane Bastress has been named the National Assistant Coach of the Year by the National Wrestling Coaches Association. Bastress received the tremendous honor at the 2012 NCAA Division III Wrestling Championships this previous Friday and Saturday in La Crosse, Wis.
"I am extremely honored and humbled to be voted for this award by my peers," Bastress stated. "The York College wrestling program is truly my second family. YCP wrestling has given me so much since I joined the program my sophomore season. After my first meeting with [Spartan head coach Tom Kessler] for the first time I knew that there was something special between him and I. Ever since that first meeting, I have felt very honored to be a part of this program's very rich history. You can say that I bleed black & green and will continue to give everything that I have to the YCP wrestling program and YCP overall!"
Bastress helped guide the Spartans to a 25-4 dual meet mark this season, as the Green and White set a new program-record for victories in a season. York then notched second overall at the 2012 Metropolitan Conference Championships, finishing in the runner-up spot by a mere half-of-a-point, while Chris Albright and Matt Heisey won the league title at their respective weight classes.
The Green and White then came home with a trio of All-American honors as Albright, Martocello, and Saliba each garnered the accolade. Each reached the championship bracket semifinals before finishing sixth, fifth, and sixth, respectively, as the three honors bumps York's wrestling All-American total to 28 awards to 24 different individuals. As a team, the Spartans finished 12th overall.
"Obviously it is a great asset to have a two-time National Champion on the coaching staff," Coach Kessler said. "Guys get invaluable information and workouts with Duane as he has the knowledge, skill, and drive of what it takes to reach one's ultimate goal. He was the best conditioned athletes I've every coached and still is."
PHOTO: Duane Bastress looks on during a match at the 2011 New Standard Invitational hosted by York earlier this season. Courtesy of Theresa Dark - York College (Pa.) Athletic Communications Student Photographer.