3 prominent WPIAL wrestling schools looking for new coaches

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Friday, June 7, 2024 | 5:39 PM


Three prominent wrestling schools are looking for new coaches.

Burrell, Canon-McMillan and Frazier have coaching vacancies after their coaches recently resigned.

Josh Shields at Burrell, Brian Krenzelak at Canon-McMillan and Buck Watkins at Frazier have stepped down for personal reasons.

Shields coached the Bucs program for the past 10 years. He said having three kids in the past four years and a different work schedule is the reason he’s stepping away.

“It was the plan all along after I took the job out of college,” Shields said. “I still plan to be involved as a volunteer or at a club.

“I need time to step back. It’s not fair for my wife to take care of the kids by herself.”

Burrell won eight WPIAL Class 2A titles under Shields.

He also has coached numerous PIAA and WPIAL champions.

Krenzelak was hired in June of 2021. He coached the Big Macs to a WPIAL title in 2022.

He said in his letter of resignation that he’s stepping down because his family dynamics have changed. Krenzelak was part of starting the girls program at Canon-McMillan.

He’s proud of all his successes the past three years.

“Stepping down is the best for my family and the program,” Krenzelak said.

Watkins’ career at Frazier included helping the Lawrence brothers (Rune and Thayne) capture eight WPIAL and six PIAA titles. Rune was a four-time PIAA champion.

He also helped lead the young Frazier program to a section title and a fourth-place finish in the WPIAL Class 2A team tournament. Frazier also made its only PIAA appearance in the state tournament.

The Commodores finished eighth in the state tournament and Jackson Angelo became the first non-Lawrence Frazier wrestler to place at states. He finished fifth at 189 pounds.

Watkins said he resigned due to family obligations.

Paul Schofield is a TribLive reporter covering high school and college sports and local golf. He joined the Trib in 1995 after spending 15 years at the Daily Courier in Connellsville, where he served as sports editor for 14 years. He can be reached at pschofield@triblive.com.

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