Jason Bovenzi named Empire Collegiate Wrestling Conference Coach of the Year
April 05, 2019


ROCHESTER, NY – RIT wrestling coach Jason Bovenzi was named the 2018-19 Empire Collegiate Wrestling Conference (ECWC) Coach of the Year, announced on April 5. Last month, he was named the National Wrestling Coaches Association Division III Mideast Region Coach of the Year.

Bovenzi led the Tigers to a 12-2 record in 2018-19, setting a program record for most dual wins in a season. In addition, RIT was ranked No. 19 in the current NWCA national poll. Three student-athletes (Connor Calkins (Almond, NY/Alfred-Almond), Dempsey King (New Hartford, NY/New Hartford) and Kaidon Winters (Athens, PA/Athens Area)) earned All-American honors. King was the national runner-up at 165 lbs., while Winters was fifth at 157 lbs. and Calkins placed eighth at 285 lbs. The Tigers scored a program record 32.5 points at the NCAA Championship, finishing 11th overall.

In addition, Bovenzi led the Tigers to top-three finishes at several tournaments and brought home the win at the Citrus Invite on Dec. 29-30. That Citrus Tournament win was the first tournament victory in school history. Last weekend, Bovenzi led the Tigers to a fourth place finish at the 2019 NCAA Mideast Regional Championship, RIT's best finish in program history. In addition, RIT earned dual wins over nationally recognized schools The College of Brockport, Roger Williams University and Worcester Polytechnic Institute.

Bovenzi and the Tigers have volunteered for the Special Olympics and with the Giving Tuesday Hunger Project. The Tigers have a team grade-point average of 3.545 this season, which was 16th best among all Division III programs. Four members (Joe Cutugno (Ventnor, NJ/Atlantic City), Chris Horton (Athens, PA/Athens Area), King and Zach Stedeford (Pittsburgh, PA/North Allegheny)) were named NWCA Academic All-Americans.