ERIE, Pa. - Penn State Behrend Department of Athletics announced today that the College will add wrestling and women's bowling to the varsity lineup. Both team's first seasons are set to begin in the 2017-18 school year.
"We are excited to offer these two sports to the students attending Penn State Behrend," said Director of Athletics Brian Streeter. "We have seen the excitement around high school wrestling and women's bowling and feel it is time to bring both sports to our campus. The quality of student-athlete we will attract will fit in well with the other student-athletes that we have competing at the NCAA Division III level."
Wrestling is actually returning to the Behrend athletic department, as the sport was dropped following the 1977-78 school year. The Lions fielded a strong wrestling program from the late 1960's through the mid-1970's. Under the direction of Ed Onorato, Behrend posted a 49-78-3 record over the 12 years history and has two former student-athletes (Ashley Swift, Brian Vollant) inducted into the Behrend Athletics Hall of Fame.
"We want to continue to be competitive within our AMCC conference as well as both regionally and nationally within Division III," said Streeter. "The addition of both sports will give us additional exposure through all venues."
The addition of wrestling and women's bowling will bring the number of varsity sports sponsored by Penn State Behrend to 24. The last varsity sport added was men's volleyball during the 2011-12 school year.
The wrestling season will run from November through February, while women's bowling goes from October until March.