Boyertown head wrestling coach Pete Ventresca will guide the team again today at the Southeast Regional Class 3A tournament and through next week's PIAA championships in Hershey. Then he will step down after 12 extremely successful years with the Bears.
Ventresca turned in his letter of resignation after Boyertown's trip to the state duals championships last month and the position was among the openings announced by the school in an email Friday afternoon.
According to Ventresca, his intentions have been known for quite awhile and he announced them officially before the end of the season so that the district would have time to search for a replacement.
"People have known for years now," he said Friday night after the eight participants for the Bears completed their wrestling in the regional preliminary and quarterfinal rounds. "I have a 5-year-old at home. Every weekend, I'm somewhere else. I miss a lot. I don't want to miss that."
Ventresca's teams compiled a 231-74 record in dual matches, including 21-5 this season. They won seven Pioneer Athletic Conference titles and four District 1 championships and finished second in the state last season.
In individual tournaments, they won three sectional, three PAC and seven district championships, including the last four. Coming into this weekend, they had placed first in the Southeast Regional three straight years.
There have been 45 state qualifiers during his tenure so far and 20 of those came home with medals. He was named the Pennsylvania Class AAA Head Coach of the Year last season.
But he'll remember much more than the wins and awards.
"I'll just remember the relationships I've developed with kids along the way," he said. "And how they've come back and contributed to our program and become good citizens."
And he's not ruling out a return to coaching someday.
"Sometime down the road, I might get back into coaching in some aspect or another," he said.