DHS Wrestling Staff Profiles

Last Updated: June 18, 2020

RICK SHOOK - HEAD COACH (1999-Present)

After completing a tremendously successful college wrestling career at Central Connecticut State University, Rick became Danbury High School's Assistant Varsity Coach in 1988. After 11 years in that capacity, Rick assumed the position of Head Coach for the 1999-2000 season. He has continued to guide the team in its winning ways, through the 2019-2020 season posting a 380-24 win/loss record during his tenure as Head Coach. Guiding Danbury to multiple FCIAC, State LL and State Open team titles in those years and three New England championships in 2017, 2019 and 2020. Rick wrestled for Danbury High School and his 58-5 high school win/loss record speaks for itself. Rick was a 2X FCIAC Champion and a State LL Champion in his senior year. In his final year at Central Connecticut State University, Rick was team captain and MVW, posting a 17-10 record en-route to a third place finish at 118 pounds in the Division I Eastern Regionals. He also finished third in the Division II Eastern Regionals during his junior year. Rick graduated from Central in 1987, with a B.S. in Management.

Coaching Honors:

State Class LL Head Coach of the Year - 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2010, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020

State Class LL Assistant Coach of the Year - 1997, 1998, 1999

CT Assistant Coach of the Year - 1999

CT Head Coach of the Year - 2000, 2007

All-Area Coach of the Year - 2001, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006

FCIAC Coach of the Year - 2004, 2005, 2012, 2014, 2017, 2019

FCIAC Winter Sport Coach of the Year - 2005, 2014

FCIAC Hall of Fame Inductee - 2018

Connecticut High School Coaches Association Hall of Fame Inductee - 2016

Doc McInerney Male Coach of the Year - 2008

New England Wrestling Hall of Fame Inductee - 2017

National Wrestling Coaches Association, CT Head Coach of the Year - 2008, 2009, 2019, 2020

National High School Athletic Coach Association, Finalist - 2008-09

National High School Athletic Coach Association, Coach of the Year - 2019

National Wrestling Hall of Fame, CT Chapter Inductee - 2013

 

KEITH LYNCH - ASSISTANT COACH (2016-Present)

Keith completed a successful High School wrestling career at Danbury where he was a team captain, FCIAC Champion and 2X State LL Champion. Previous coaching experience: Bethel HS - Assistant Coach (2014-2016)

Coaching Honors:

State Class LL Assistant Coach of the Year 2019, 2020

National Wrestling Coaches Association, CT Assistant Coach of the Year - 2019

 

ABI SCUDDER - STRENGTH COACH (1992-Present)

Abi signed on with Danbury Wrestling in 1992 and the positive results of her contributions are evident in the improved physicality of the DHS team.  As an instructor, spotter and motivator she is an expert.   Abi's own personal accomplishments are very impressive.  She holds many titles as a State Champion in power lifting in Connecticut (at 105 pounds) and has qualified for the Nationals many times.  In addition to her work with DHS wrestling, Abi has also served as a strength trainer for other power lifters, gymnasts and swimmers.  Over the past decades Abi has become an integral part of the success of Danbury's entire program.

 

JAMES ASCONE - ASSISTANT COACH (2015-2018)

James is a former DHS wrestler, where he was FCIAC Champion and 3rd in CT State LL his junior year. Ascone went on to attend Western Connecticut State University where he received his Bachelor's Degree in Health Education. James is currently a Health Education teacher at Danbury High School.

Coaching Honors:

State Class LL Assistant Coach of the Year - 2016, 2017

 

GARY TILBE - ASSISTANT COACH (1999-2004, 2015-2018)

Gary is a former DHS wrestler with extensive coaching experience: Pomperaug HS - Head Coach (1984-1990), Fermi HS - Assistant Coach (1995-1999), Danbury HS - Assistant Coach (1999-2004), Nonnewaug HS - Assistant Coach (2007-2011, 2014)

Coaching Honors:

State Class LL Assistant Coach of the Year - 2002, 2004

State Class S Assistant Coach of the Year - 2009 (Nonnewaug)

CT Assistant Coach of the Year - 2002

NWCA Regional Assistant Coach of the Year - 2002

 

PAUL PURDY - ASSISTANT COACH (2016-2018)

Paul wrestled for the Brewster Bears from 1997-2000. At the culmination of his high school career he was inducted into Brewster's Athletic Hall of Fame for wrestling and lacrosse. He furthered his lacrosse career at Springfield College where he received All America accolades his senior year. At Springfield, Coach Purdy earned a Bachelor's degree in Physical Education. Paul currently teaches Physical Education at Danbury High School.

 

MATT LASKOWSKI - ASSISTANT COACH (2005-2015)

Matt is a former DHS wrestler, where he placed 3rd in the FCIAC and 6th in the State LL his senior year. Matt went on to attend Springfield College where he received his Bachelor's Degree in Physical Education. Matt competed on Springfield's wrestling team during his Freshman year at 149 pounds. During his Junior year, Matt was hired as the assistant wrestling coach at South Hadley High School in Massachusetts. Currently an administrator in Stamford.

Coaching Honors:

State Class LL Assistant Coach of the Year - 2006, 2007, 2008, 2010

National Wrestling Coaches Association, CT Assistant Coach of the Year - 2008, 2009

 

MIKE SILVESTRI - ASSISTANT COACH (2011-2013)

Mike completed a successful High School wrestling career at Danbury where he was a team captain, 2X FCIAC Champion, State LL Champion, State Open Champion and 2X New England Placer. Mike went on to attend Penn State University where he received his Bachelor's Degree.

 

NICK WEYER - ASSISTANT COACH (2008-2012)

Nick completed a successful High School wrestling career at Danbury where he was a team captain, 4X FCIAC Champion, 3X State LL Champion, State Open Champion and 2X New England Placer.

 

STEVE KAPLANIS - ASSISTANT COACH (2004-2005)

Steve was a DHS graduate. While at DHS he earned varsity letters in football, wrestling, and baseball, but he is remembered for his community service. In 1976, Steve was one of the founding members of the Danbury Athletic Youth Organization (D.A.Y.O.). Steve coached DAYO football for twenty years, from 1976-1997. His overall record was 200 wins and 9 losses. His teams played in two national Pop Warner championship games, winning in 1990 and losing in 1995 to the Elgon, Illinois Steelers. His teams were five time New England Regional Champs and won the Candlewood Valley League an amazing sixteen seasons. Aside from his youth football, Steve also coached bambino baseball and youth wrestling. He coached at the Joe Namath football camp for over fifteen years. As the head football coach at Immaculate High School from 1997-2005, his teams won six divisional championships and qualified for the state championship in 1997.

Coaching Honors:

State Class LL Assistant Coach of the Year - 2005

 

MARK TOLLA - ASSISTANT COACH (1999-2001)

Mark is a DHS graduate. While at DHS, Mark was a standout 3-sport athlete. He was starting quarterback for the football team his senior year, wrestled 2 years of varsity at 147 pounds and was undefeated his senior year before a dislocated shoulder ended his season. A 3 year starter for the baseball team and senior captain, Mark played 2 years of Division I baseball at UConn.

 

JOHN NIMOCK - HEAD COACH (1992-1999)

Record 167-8-1

Coaching Honors:

CT Head Coach of the Year  1997, 1999

 

MIKE MORRIS - HEAD COACH (1979-1991)

Record 219-36-0

Coaching Honors:

New England Wrestling Hall of Fame Inductee - 1997

National Wrestling Hall of Fame, CT Chapter Inductee - 2010

 

JAMES TROCOLLA - HEAD COACH (1972-1978)

Record 55-49-2

 

ERNIE GUCKEL - HEAD COACH (1970-1971)

Record 19-5-0

 

BOB GILCHRIST - HEAD COACH (1968-1969)

Record 19-3-2