By Neva Kendal
Wrestling actually started in Mineral Point in the fall of 1962 under Coach Jerry Olson.
They did not wrestle in a conference but did have a few matches. I talked to Gary Griffiths about the first year of wrestling and he said they did have a wrestling mat but it was 4 or 6 small mats slid together. Jim Meylor also told me that Coach Olson had never wrestled and he was teaching them out of a book.
In the fall of 1963 Al Bauman started teaching in Mineral Point and he took over as head coach and at that time they joined what was then the SWAL Conference. In the fall of 1971 this was changed to the Southern Eight Conference and in the fall of 1986 the conference was changed back to the SWAL with 2 divisions. It stayed this way until the fall of 2005 when it was divided into 8 teams in the SWAL and 6 teams in the SWC. Mineral Point remained in the SWAL along with Boscobel, Darlington, Cuba City/Southwestern, Fennimore, Iowa-Grant and Riverdale.
In 1987 Coach Bauman retired from coaching after 24 years with a career dual meet record of 281 wins, 26 losses and 1 tie. At this time Scott Schmitz, one of Coach Baumans former wrestlers and a 2-time State Champion for Mineral Point, took over as head coach. He is still our present coach. So we have only had two head coaches in the 43 years we have had wrestling. Quite a record and they have accumulated a total of 555 dual meet wins for the school. Coach Scott Schmitz has just completed his 20 th year and has a dual meet record of 274 wins, 71 losses and 3 ties, if I have it right. Quite the records, right. Since the 1963-64 season we have had 164 Conference Champions and 44 State Champions (if my records are correct) and at least 550 students out for wrestling.
Mark and Todd Schmitz never lost a conference match, never missed a conference match, and were 4-time Conference Champions. There are several father and sons that have both wrestled for Mineral Point.
So thanks to each and everyone – whether you were a wrestler (Varsity or JV), a Coach (Varsity or JV), a manager, a parent, or a fan that has made Mineral Point wrestling what it is today. Thanks for the Memories and keep up the good work!