d3wrestle.com Coach of the Year

d3wrestle.com Coach of the Year – Dave Malecek – University of Wisconsin-La Crosse

The first annual d3wrestle.com Coach of the Year award goes to Dave Malecek of the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse.  Malecek led the Eagles to a second place finish at the NCAA Championships  where they crowned three individual national champions in 133 lb. Bebeto Yewah, 174 lb. Michael Schmitz, and 285 lb. Dan Laurent.  Laurent became the second three time NCAA champion in school history, joining fellow heavyweight Ryan Allen.  La Crosse was the only team to win multiple individual titles at this year’s championship and they also had six total All-Americans, as Matt Mauseth was third at 149, Cory Ferguson was eighth at 165, and Andy Moore was fourth at 197.

La Crosse began the year ranked #1, and compiled a 14-3 dual meet record.  They were third at the Matman Invitational, sixth at the Pete Willson Invitational, second at the Eau Claire Invitational, and fifth at the NWCA National Duals.  They went on to win their 13th consecutive WIAC championship before earning the runner-up trophy at the NCAA championships.  With that second place finish, La Crosse has now finished in the top three in the NCAA in each of Malecek’s four years as head coach.

An NCAA All-American for the University of Northern Iowa, Malecek joined UW-La Crosse for the 2006-2007 season after spending six seasons as the top assistant at Wartburg College.  In his time at La Crosse, Malecek was named the 2007 Rookie Coach of the Year and has coached 23 All-Americans and 8 NCAA Champions.  Four of the 2010 All-Americans will return next year for the Eagles.