Darkhorse Wrestling NC - Charlotte Wrestling Club

Darkhorse Wrestling Coaching Staff

Darkhorse Wrestling brings a diverse and talented group of coaches to the room. The staff has deep wrestling experience that cuts across the various weight classes and styles. While the main focus is on folkstyle (high school) wrestling, the staff has significant experience in freestyle and greco as well - which they bring to the mat to ensure a well-rounded wrestler. The volunteer staff also continues to grow as the room grows, enabling all the kids to get the attention they need and deserve. 

The Darkhorse coaches are passionate about the sport of wrestling and the wrestlers that 'embrace the grind' every day in our room.  As such, they are very approachable and will make themselves available to answer parent or wrestler questions before or after every practice.  In addition, the will host a formal Parent Meeting on the FIRST SUNDAY OF EACH MONTH at 3:00pm to discuss upcoming events and any other topics of interest.

Coach Ian Assael

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Professional Coach:  With 25+ years proven successful record of developing youth, high school and college wrestlers in pursuit of their dreams in D1 NCAA competition and beyond.

  • Bison Legend Wrestling Club Founder and Coach (Recognized by USA Wrestling as a top 50 club in the nation multiple years)

  • Coached Bison Legend to NHSCA Duals top 5 place finish in all 3 age groups; Bison HS team finished top 6 in the nation 3 years in a row and were Waterway Duals champions 3 years in a row

  • Coached World Team members in both styles and a World medalist in Freestyle

  • Coached multiple Pennsylvania State, Super 32, FloNational, Fargo, and NHSCA National Champions

  • Coach to over 20 wrestlers ranked top 20 in the nation

  • Coached multiple Dapper Dan members and Dapper Dan MOW

Coach Jim Avola



  • Clifton, NJ / Newark Academy

  • NJ Region 4 Champion, 3x NJ District 14 Champion

  • Career prep record of 120-14

  • 3x NJ Freestyle State Champion and 2x NJ Greco State Champion

  • Wrestled @ Davidson College

  • 4 year starter - 3 year captain

  • Bachelors - Psychology (Davidson)

  • Former wrestling coach @ Charlotte Catholic High School

  • USA Wrestling Bronze Ceritified Coach

  • NFHS Concussion in Sports Certified

Coach Patrick Wittekind



  • Culver, IN / Culver Military Academy

  • Indiana HS Athletic Association State Finalist

  • Wrestled @ Oswego State University (134)

  • NCAA All American

  • All New York State Collegiate Team

  • Former wrestling coach @ East Gaston High School

  • NFHS Concussion in Sports Certified


Coach Jim Gormley



  • Coventry, RI / Coverntry

  • University of Rhode Island

  • Former wrestling coach @ Independence, Mallard Creek, and Providence High Schools


Coach Scott Bosak

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  • Three time PA state qualifier

  • 5th at PA states

  • 2x Greco Roman PA state champ

  • 2x Freestyle PA runner up

  • 3 times NHSCA All American at Virginia Beach (4th, 5th, 8th)

  • All American at Super 32 (8th)


  • Attended Cornell then transferred to Belmont Abbey College

  • Two time NCAA D2 national qualifier

  • NCAA D2 regional champion

  • NCAA D2 All American (5th)


  • Current Head coach Providence High School


Coach Jason Tolbert


*Greco Roman All-American Junior Nationals 1990 (Team Minnesota)
*US Army and WCAP Wrestling Team 1992-2008
*3x Olympic Festival Gold Medalist, 1 Bronze
*3x University National Champ, 1 Silver
*2X Armed Forces Champ
*1995 Georgia State Games Finalist
*1995 National World Team, Greco Roman – (ranked 3rd in the Country from 1995-1996)
*1997 Military World Games Team Member
*All Army Team 1993-2000, 01, 04, 07,08
*World Class Athlete Team 1995-2000, 04, 07, 08
*2006 Georgia State Games Iron Man Champ-(Greco Gold, Freestyle Gold, Folk style Silver)
*Greco Senior Open National All American from 1994-2000-2004, 2007
*Listed in the Hall of Champions Database 3x at the National Wrestling Hall of Fame in Stillwater, OK.
*Trained at the following Olympic Training Centers: USA, Russia, Germany, Bulgaria, Sweden.