Jeannette senior wrestler Ruane picks up another honor

| Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2014, 9:00 p.m.

Anthony Ruane is a senior wrestler at Jeannette High School has some goals for his final year wrestling as a Jayhawk.

Last year's team sent a couple of wrestlers to the WPIAL competitions, but Ruane said no one went any further. His goal is to make it further, to at least regional competition this year. Ruane placed sixth out of more than 20 athletes in an early season tournament.

This year, the Jayhawk wrestlers are under new leadership — Josh Westfall is the new head coach.

“He played football in high school and he knows good workouts for us,” said Ruane. “He pushes hard. He's a fun guy, really funny. He's social with us; I get along with him really well.”

Ruane has adjusted to a few new coaches throughout his high school wrestling career — he got his start as a freshman. This season, the hire of a new coach came after the time practices should have started and Ruane said the team was concerned if the sport would even continue.

“The people who wrestled previous years knew what was happening but the younger guys had to adjust quickly,” said Ruane. He added that the experience improved the team's bonding.

“That makes wrestling so much fun, the people I'm with and the laughs.”

This year's wrestling team has many young, inexperienced members, but that is due in part to the older players working hard to recruit new wrestlers.

“We recruited a lot this year to fill our weight classes,” he said. “We have a pretty decent team this year. We'll get on track and have a great season.”

He is glad he's stuck with the sport throughout high school. Ruane said it helps him to stay in shape in the offseason, and playing soccer only adds to his conditioning. Between soccer and wrestling, it's a draw for Ruane's favorite.

“I'm glad I stayed in wrestling, it really had an impact on me,” he said.

He plans to try out for baseball this spring so he can wrap his high school career with letters in five sports — football, baseball, golf, soccer and wrestling.

He believes in college he will try out for the soccer team and maybe do intramural wrestling and men's volleyball. He's enrolled for the fall 2014 semester at Slippery Rock University.

So far his senior year has gone much more quickly than he expected.

“I'm not too sad, but at the same time I am; I don't want it to be over. I want to be at college, yes, but I want to be here, too,” he said.

He's undecided on a major so far, he plans to get his core classes out of the way first so as not to waste time if he were to change his mind on a major after his first year. Ruane would also like to work on getting his SAT scores up a bit so he can eventually transfer from Slippery Rock to the Naval Academy.

“I'd like to thank my parents Tammy Sirnic and Bill Ruane for being there for me,” he said. “I'd like to thank my coach and my team for the memories to come and, hopefully, for a great season.”

Kristie Linden is an editor for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at or 724-838-5154.

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