OHIO CITY, Oh - The Wildcats are coming off an exciting 54-15 win over Cuyahoga Heights Friday night. The team is starting to come together as we approach the end of the regular season. The Mat Cats began a little slow to start the season but have put in a lot of long hours and hard work and are peaking at the right time. The Cats are primed for their final regular-season match-ups against Lake Catholic and Strongsville.
Head Wrestling Coach Mark Sullivan and his Wildcat wrestlers take on the Cougars of Lake Catholic Saturday at noon on February 12. Then, Coach Sullivan's final match as the Wildcat's Head Coach will be the following Saturday on February 19, vs. the Mustangs of Strongsville.
"The match against Strongsville will be special, it is coach Sullivan's last match and we want to make sure we send him off with a W," says Associate Head Coach Jon Polick '03. "Sullivan has been there for us and has molded us into men for others through his discipline and the sport of wrestling."
The upcoming competitors have a strong, rich history posing fierce challenges over the years, so getting two more Ws will be complex; however, the Mat Cats will be ready.
"We've had the fortune of having coach Sullivan and the stability he brought to the program for the past 20 years, says Polick. "He has put up Hall of Fame numbers and is looking to end with two more victories."
In coach Sullivan's 19 years as the Head Coach of Saint Ignatius Wrestling, he has coached 43 state qualifiers, 27 state placers, six state champions and a national champion; his teams have recorded an impressive 238 victories, with only 66 defeats. Coach Polick just shook his head and said, "We have big shoes to fill; Sullivan has put up mind-blowing numbers. However, the respect, spirituality and emphasis on academics set him apart. Ever since I've coached with Sullivan, he's held prayer sessions after every practice and event; he's always stressing academics and being a good person. And, oh yes, he can get fired up when needed!"
When Sullivan was asked about his decorated career at Saint Ignatius, he stated, "It's an environment set up for the betterment of the community by preparing young men to be special spiritually, academically and socially. It's been a pleasure coaching this senior class. The younger guys will be ready to step up next year. Coach Polick has played a major role in taking our program to the next level; it's comforting knowing he will be here to continue our mission."