McGill gets immediate results with Warriors

March 24, 2011|By ANDREW MASON |
  • Boonsboro's Mike McGill was named the Herald-Mail's All-County coach of the year.
Boonsboro's Mike McGill was named the Herald-Mail's All-County coach of the year.

BOONSBORO — The Boonsboro wrestling team had its most successful season in program history this winter.

The Warriors went 10-8 in dual meets for their first winning season, which included their first-ever victories over North Hagerstown and Smithsburg. The 10 wins also were a single-season school record.

At the Maryland Class 2A-1A state tournament, seniors Bucky Miller (fourth at 189 pounds) and Jon Best (sixth at 160), both first-time state qualifiers, gave Boonsboro multiple state placewinners for the first time, with Miller matching the best finish in program history.

That all that success happened in Mike McGill’s first season as the Warriors’ head coach is probably no coincidence.

McGill is The Herald-Mail’s 2010-11 Washington County Wrestling Coach of the Year.

“I knew the potential we had,” McGill said. “Others might have been pretty surprised, but I thought we could accomplish all those things we ended up doing.

“The big problem at Boonsboro had always been that they didn’t have a full team. That was my main goal — to get a full team. If you can fill a lineup out, you have a chance.”

McGill, also a two-time Herald-Mail Wrestler of the Year, graduated from Williamsport in 2005 as a two-time state champion and then competed at the NCAA Division I level at the University of Maryland.

He said coaching wrestlers is a whole other ballgame than being a wrestler.

“It’s a lot different,” he said. “On the mat, I could control what I did. Now, I give the kids guidance and tell them what works and what doesn’t, but in the end, it’s up to them. It’s tough being a little more restrained sitting on the chair.”

McGill said it’s also more difficult to keep his wits about him.

“I was way more nervous going into the region and state tournaments this year than I ever was as a wrestler — way more, it wasn’t even close,” he said.

Being a 23-year-old coach also has its advantages, especially when it comes to rolling around with your wrestlers during practice.

“I let them score once in a while,” McGill said with a laugh. “I don’t want to beat them up too much.”

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