Two Arizona high school wrestling standouts have signed national letters-of-intent to Grand Canyon, announced GCU coach R.C. LaHaye Monday.
Two-time state champion William Olivas, a 125-class wrestler from Tucson Sunnyside High School and two-time 157-class winner Pierre Gaud of Yuma Cibola High School are the latest additions to the GCU grappling family.
"Arizona has some great wrestlers and we want to give them a chance to be NCAA Division I All-Americans at GCU," said LaHaye. "These two athletes as well as the two we signed in November (Trey Ronayne, from Chandler Basha, and Gabe Gonzalez, also from Tucson Sunnyside) show that we believe in Arizona wrestling and we believe these athletes can succeed at the highest level of collegiate wrestling. We are very excited to add William and Pierre to our family here at Grand Canyon."
Along with winning two state titles, Olivas was named the 2014 Arizona Wrestler of the Year and is a National High School Coaches Association All-American. He won the Reno Tournament of Champions and was named the outstanding wrestler of the event.
"William is the best lightweight in Arizona right now," said LaHaye. "His undefeated season along with his national accolades prove he has the tools to be very successful at the D-I level. We are excited to build the pipeline between Sunnyside and GCU for years to come."
Gaud is also a two-time champ and was named the 2014 Arizona Wrestler of the State Tournament. He is an All-Arizona first-team member and the 2014 Flowing Wells Champion.
"Pierre has the physique and strength of a college wrestler right now," added LaHaye. "He is a very explosive athlete with a ton of potential as a collegiate athlete. We expect some great things from Pierre here at Grand Canyon and are very excited to add him to our program."
Along with Ronayne and Gonzalez, GCU signed four-time Washington state champion Bobby Reece and California wrestlers Derrick Jones and Uzo Owuama during the November period.
Due to its transition from Division II to Division I, GCU is ineligible for NCAA post season competition for three more years. The Antelopes participated this past season in the National Collegiate Wrestling Association tournaments. Ranked No. 1, GCU won the NCWA Collegiate Cup (for duals) and NCWA Championships, grabbing four individual titles and three runner-up finishes.
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