First of all, I want to say thank you to all of you who supported us throughout this school year. The guys are currently finishing up final exams. Remember those good old days. I, for one, do not miss them. My hope is the guys finish well.
Some of the highlights for me from the past season were being able to watch Jake Kettler wrestle at the NCAA Championships, watch the guys compete in Madison Square Garden, competing in front of our largest home crowd against Navy, having some extra fun on a few of our road trips, celebrating our season together at our end of the year banquet, watching 5 seniors leave Mason with a degree; and having some great promotional items and events including the Mason Pinners Club, videos, pocket schedule cards and a team poster. Thanks, in part to you, we are making progress.
We are already hard at work for next season. We have joined a new conference. We will now compete in the Eastern Wrestling League. The league will consist of the following teams next season: Bloomsburg; Clarion; Cleveland State; Edinboro; Loch Haven; Rider; and us.
We have 23 guys signed up to compete next weekend at the University Nationals/University World Team Trials in Akron, Ohio. Guys will be competing in Freestyle and Greco-Roman hoping to make the USA University World Team that will compete in Russia in July at the World University Games.
The schedule is starting to take form. As of now, it looks like we will have 7 home competitions. Our road trips are highlighted by attending the NE Duals, Grapple at the Garden and Virginia Duals. We will be tested and wrestle against some great competition.
We will kick off the college season by hosting the NWCA All-Star Meet at the Patriot Center on November 2. We will be the focal point for college wrestling on that day. Thus, it will be a great day for George Mason University Wrestling. Our goal is to Pack the Patriot Center. This event will be a program changer for us. We are currently looking for key stakeholders to help us run the best All-Star Meet in the storied history of the event. We will hold a meeting for those interested in volunteering on Tuesday, May 28th at 7pm at the Field House. If you are interested in helping, please try and attend the meeting. If you cannot attend, but would like to help, please let me know.
We are also currently working on 2 fundraising events. If you can participate, we would greatly appreciate it. The annual alumni golf outing will be held on June 10. The largest alumni group will receive 10% of the proceeds. We won last year and would like to win again this year.
The Patriot Club is also in the middle of a fundraising challenge. The highest percentage of alumni donors from a team will receive an extra donation from Dan and Patty Wotring. It is important that we win this challenge. 3 reasons why: Dan is a wrestler and he would prefer the money go to his team; we need to show the school the importance of the wrestling program; we need the money to support our basic needs for building the wrestling program. Please consider making a donation.