Brentzel hired as Penn-Trafford wrestling coach

Wednesday, June 26, 2019 | 9:22 PM

When A.J. Brentzel and his wife, Alicia, attended a Penn-Trafford wrestling match last season, Brentzel told her he really wanted to give back to the program.

“I felt I could help out and had something to make the program better,” Brentzel said. “I felt I could make a difference.”

When Rich Ginther decided to resign after the season to devote more time to his family, Brentzel became a candidate and will get a chance.

Penn-Trafford athletic director Kerry Hetrick announced Tuesday that Brentzel, a 2007 Penn-Trafford graduate, would become the program’s new coach.

While the Penn-Trafford School District’s board doesn’t meet for another month, the school board already has decided Brentzel will be the coach.

Brentzel, 31, owns a business, Pipeline Brex Enterprises, in Irwin. He and his wife have three children — 4-year-old twins Blaire and Bo and 2-year-old Case. They are expecting a fourth child this year.

His goal is to make Penn-Trafford strong again. In his junior season, Penn-Trafford was the WPIAL Class AAA champion, and in his senior season, the Warriors placed second. Vince Testa was Brentzel’s coach.

Penn-Trafford has had two three-time PIAA champions: Shane Young (2007-09) and Cam Coy (2014, 2016-2017).

“I have a different outlook on things,” Brentzel said. “We weren’t a squad filled with superstars. We just had a lot of good wrestlers who worked together. I want the program to continue to build and be solid again.

“I want to create a winning culture. I know about disappointments. I finished second in the state my senior season, and I was ranked No. 1 (NCAA Division II) at Pitt-Johnstown and didn’t become an All-American.”

Brentzel began his college career at Pitt before transferring to Pitt-Johnstown and graduating in 2011.

“I’m excited. It’s going to be a challenge,” Brentzel said. “I believe I’m ready for it.”

Paul Schofield is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Paul by email at or via Twitter .


More High School Sports

Salvitti survives crazy round to win AJGA Southpointe Tournament
Laurel Highlands baseball coach DeBerry dies following stomach cancer diagnosis
Central Catholic’s Rocco Salvitti still in the hunt at AJGA Southpointe tournament
WPIAL requests eligibility hearings for New Castle, Bishop Canevin transfers
Michael Wareham, Victoria Witouski awarded inaugural Fuhrer scholarships

click me