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Last week I had the opportunity to talk with Louie Gill. Louie is not only a great wrestler, he’s a smart, well spoken young man who is driven to be the best. Here’s some of what you need to know about Reynolds High and one of Western PA’s finest. Choosing to join the North Carolina State Wolfpack after high school, Louie gives coach Pat Popolizio a great one to hold down the lower weights in Raleigh.
Louie enters this season carrying a top 10 ranking at 120 pounds and a record of 93-10. He’s a two time PIAA state finalist, but it’s been awhile since that 1st state title as freshman. He’s anxious to complete an impressive career with bookend championships. Transferring from Hickory to Reynolds prior to last season forced him to the sidelines and having to watch others compete for what he would have been a strong contender for. But that adversity just paints an even more interesting and exciting picture for him, for us as fans, this year.
Louie started wrestling at 5 years old. As he gained experience and had some early success, he started working with some clubs in the area – notably Bad Karma and Young Guns. With Bad Karma, Gill had the opportunity to train with Gary Steen (former 2-time PA state champ for Reynolds and now 125 at Penn State) and the University of Pittsburgh’s All American, Cole Matthews. While The Young Guns gave Louie a chance to train with three time PIAA State Champion, Vinny Kilkeary, now at Ohio State and Ty Kapusta who is a two time PIAA state medalist.
Louie gives a lot of credit to his success and growth in the sport to his older brother Carter, as well as all the fantastic practice partners he has had coming up.
Entering his senior season, Louie’s picked up some big wins. He defeated nationally ranked Keanu Dillard 9-6 in the Ultimate Club Duals. He also picked up a pair of wins over Fargo Champion, Landon Sidun of Norwin 5-2 in early September.
A somewhat forgotten man, this off-season, Louie will look to re-introduce himself at Super 32 and then do what select group of wrestlers have in Pennsylvania in March: winning his second PIAA title. And should he do that, you can call it a comeback, just don’t call it a surprise.
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Based in Western PA. Right in the heart of WPIAL country, Todd brings an insider’s view from the country’s epicenter of wrestling. He’s excited to build on the TKDWN tradition of starting with the story first. The athletes, the coaches, their families and supporters, there is no shortage of stories to tell. And Todd will bring his unique perspective to help us continue to deliver top notch content for the world’s greatest sport!