Daniel Rohman will get a chance to lead a program after coaching various levels for 24 years.
The longtime coach and McHenry assistant has taken over the Warriors’ program and is grateful to finally have an opportunity to lead after so many years in wrestling.
“When this opportunity became open this past year I was really excited,” Rohman said. “I was pumped and grateful McHenry offered me this opportunity.”
Rohman takes over the program after Jake Guardalabene stepped down after last season to spend more time with his family. Rohman served as an assistant coach under Guardalabene during all of his six years as head coach.
The new Warriors coach has more than two dozen years of experience at different levels in both central Illinois and in the Chicago area, including five years at Neuqua Valley. After a brief hiatus, Rohman returned to wrestling six years ago when he became a teacher at McHenry and remembered how much the sport meant to him.
“Once it gets in your blood, you can’t shake it, at least I can’t shake it,” Rohman said. “Wrestling has given me more than I can give it back.”
Rohman takes over a program coming off a strong season. The Warriors fell a dual short of a Fox Valley Conference title with a 21-1 dual record and junior Chris Moore finished second in the 160-pound individual state tournament.
Rohman isn’t going to change much of what worked under Guardalabene and hopes that having some familiar faces will help make the transition easier. Rohman does plan to hold more conversations than there were in the past, not just on wrestling, but other things that will prepare wrestlers for life after the mat.
“As coaches, we’ve got strong opportunities to make an impact, a positive strong impact on these student-athletes,” Rohman said. “That’s something that I really look forward to.”
McHenry athletic director Joel Beard said he was inpressed by with how well Rohman connected with the wrestlers. Beard enjoyed learning more about Rohman and the extensive knowledge he has about wrestling, something that helped Rohman stand out during the coaching search.
“I’m excited to work with him and see where he can take our program,” Beard said. “We had a great year last year, we want to continue to build the program and see what we can do.”
Rohman knows that he’s taking over a program that has a solid foundation thanks to coaches like Guardalabene and Will Gaddy, who was the Warriors longtime coach before Guardalabene. He’s ready to put all the ingredients together this season and wants to bring state trophies back to McHenry, both individually and as a team.
“I just want to continue to move forward in the right direction and hopefully start bringing home some state champions and potentially state trophies,” Rohman said. “That’s what our goal is.”