Jim Wertman has been promoted to become the next head wrestling coach at Delaware Valley University. He replaces Steve Cantrell who will remain in his current position of athletic director. Wertman has been with the Aggies for the past five seasons and has helped the team to a pair of top ten finishes and 12 All-Americans. Cantrell steps down after six years at the helm and a 54-37 dual meet record. Read on for more from Delaware Valley.
5/4/2017 4:03 PMDOYLESTOWN (PA) – Delaware Valley University is proud to announce that current assistant wrestling coach Jim Wertman has been promoted to head coach as Steve Cantrell has resigned to further concentrate on his growing duties as the Aggies’ director of athletics.
“This was not an easy decision for me as my passion for wrestling and the student-athletes on the team will never waver,” Cantrell said. “However, I knew when I became the Director of Athletics four years ago that this day would eventually come, it is the right time to step away, allowing me to dedicate all of my attention to enhancing and growing the department as a whole.
“What makes the decision a little easier is the fact that Jim will take over as head coach. He has been my right-hand man for the last five years and has played an instrumental role in our success on and off the mat. It is the perfect transition for DelVal and the wrestling program.”
Wertman has helped the team finish in the top 20 at the NCAA Division III Championships in each of the last four years, including a fifth-place finish in 2013-14 and a sixth-place showing in 2014-15. In 2014-15, the team also won the Middle Atlantic Conference (MAC) and NCAA East Regional title.
Over Wertman’s five years on the staff, the Aggies have crowned two national champions, 12 All-Americans and nine Scholar All-Americans. Both national titles came from heavyweight Zach Roseberry as he took the NCAA crown in both 2015-16 and 2016-17.
Wertman joined the Aggie wrestling staff after five seasons as a varsity wrestling coach at nearby William Tennent High School. His coaching experience also includes four seasons with the Warminster Spartans youth wresting club.
Wertman served 21 years in the United States Navy and retired in 2011 at the rank of Chief Petty Officer. He is a former Division III wrestler at Lycoming College and also competed with the United States Navy, All Navy team.
Wertman graduated from DelVal with a bachelor’s degree in business administration with an emphasis on sports management. He then received his Master’s in business administration from the institution. Wertman is also the President of Ivyland Printing, LLC.
“I feel extremely excited and humbled at the same time,” Wertman said. “To follow in the footsteps of the great coaches that this program has had and to mentor the student-athletes that come through it is opportunity of a lifetime. I’ve learned so much from Steve over the past five years and am thankful for this opportunity. I look forward to continuing the success that this program has had on the mat and in the classroom.”
Cantrell posted a 54-37 record in dual meets during his six years as head coach of the Aggies. His teams have combined to produce two top-10 finishes at the NCAA Championships, a Middle Atlantic Conference and NCAA East Regional title, two national champions, 14 All-Americans and 10 Scholar All-Americans.
The first, top 10 finish was the 2013-14 campaign as Cantrell and the Aggies produce an 11-5 record. Three of the four national qualifiers earned All-America accolades as the team finished tied for sixth place and the sixth-highest finish in program history.
The next year, DelVal notched an 11-3 record and captured both the MAC and NCAA East Regional championships in tournaments that were both decided in the final match. Six wrestlers qualified for the NCAAs and four came back as All-Americans as the team just missed out on a national trophy with a fifth-place showing. Cantrell was honored for his work by being named the MAC Co-Coach of the Year.
The last two seasons have been highlighted by Roseberry’s run to national titles as he became just the third wrestler in the program’s storied history to win multiple NCAA crowns and earn All-America honors all four years.
Since becoming director of athletics, Cantrell has overseen initiatives such as the addition of five new intercollegiate sports (women’s golf, men’s lacrosse, women’s lacrosse, men’s tennis and women’s tennis), the installment of artificial turf and lights at the stadium, the implementation of a new athletic branding project, and the department’s transition when DelVal obtained University status. During his first year at the helm of the athletic department, Cantrell was also the building project manager for Delaware Valley’s new $15 million Life Sciences Building.
A former Division I wrestler and assistant coach, Cantrell served as a member of the United States Marine Corps for 24 years before retiring from the service in 2007. He was a Commissioned Officer for 16 of those years, holding various positions as a Combat Helicopter Pilot.