Robie era begins for VT wrestling

Tony Robie takes over as head coach after 11 years as assistant

By Eric Johnson - Sports Reporter

BLACKSBURG, Va. - Virginia Tech is getting set to roll out the wrestling mats for the first time this season on Saturday, and even with a new coach at the helm, the Hokies goals remain the same.

Long time assistant, Tony Robie, takes over after 11 years under Kevin Dresser. He's brought in coaches that have a wealth of experience on the mats including some former Olympic athletes. He's hoping that experience will help smooth out the early challenges that lie ahead. 

"It's a process of getting to know each other and then starting to understand each other and understand everybody's strengths and trying to figure out exactly what responsibilities are going to be whose and you know just working together," Robie said.

The Hokies lost a core of All-Americans from a season ago, including Joey Dance and Zach Epperly. But they return 2 seniors who will make a difference, in Solomon Chishko and Jared Haught.

"I think it's just helping the young guys be ready to go out there," said Haught. 

He was a 2017 ACC Champion and All-American.

"I just know as a freshman I don't think I was quite ready I felt like it wasn't my time and that's kind of a wrong attitude to have. So kind of helping the freshman get the mentality that they can go out there they can do it."

Tech has finished in the top 11 in the NCAA tournament the last six years so the standard of success has been set.

"Continue to build our culture and make sure that our guys are buying into what were preaching and what our expectations are. I think the results will take care of themselves," said Robie.

The ninth-ranked Hokies will host number 21 Stanford at Cassell Coliseum Saturday at 1:30.

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