Stratton to wrestle at Lackawanna College

GEORGETOWN – Sussex Central High’s soon-to-be graduate Rashad Stratton accomplished everything he could on the mat in his four years wrestling for coaches Phil Schultie and Shane Miller.

The two-time individual state champion and one-time dual-meet champion is ready to take his career to the next level.

Stratton, who has been wrestling since the age of six, will be joining the Lackawanna College wrestling program next year and is excited for the opportunity.

Rashad celebrates seconds after clinching his second consecutive individual state title in February (Sussex Post/Ben Heck).

“It’s time to pass the torch down,” Stratton said, with a laugh, about leaving his high school career behind and heading off to college in Scranton, Pennsylvania.

Stratton had a few options, but he ultimately felt as though Lackawanna was the perfect fit for him.

“I was just looking through my options, trying to find out what’s good for me and I went to visit, fell in love with the campus, fell in love with the coaches and I just thought it’s a good place for me,” he said.

“Some things that he wanted were to be a little closer to home and still be able to compete, and that’s what Lackawanna can offer him,” coach Miller said. “I believe it’s going to be a good fit for him.”

A ceremony to celebrate his decision, in front of family, friends and teammates, was held in the Sussex Central High lobby Thursday, May 24 to commemorate the moment.

“I’ve seen a lot of maturity, a lot of growth,” said Central head wrestling coach Shane Miller. “Rashad might not have known what his end goal could be when he first got here, but he was able to grow, mature and figure out that he’s a very talented young man and that he can go to the next level and compete – which is what we’re here to celebrate today.”

Miller, who was Central’s assistant coach for Stratton’s sophomore and junior seasons and head coach for his senior season, made sure Rashad’s younger teammates attended the ceremony Thursday afternoon so they could see it first-hand.

“That’s why I made it a point for these younger guys to come see this today, because it is impactful,” coach Miller said. “That’s our end goal as coaches, we want to see these boys go on and be successful in life – go to school, go to a trade and hold a job – but definitely within the school system we’re promoting going to the secondary education level and I think we have a good, talented group of young men here now and they’re hopefully going to have that same opportunity that Rashad has.”

Rashad, with his parents Antoine and Raven and Central’s head wrestling coach Shane Miller, during last week’s ceremony at Sussex Central High (Sussex Post/Ben Heck).

What is Rashad going to miss most about competing at the high school level?

“The team, really,” he said. “The team has made me become a better wrestler and a better person.”

Lackawanna wrestling program

The Lackawanna Falcons just completed its first-ever wrestling season, meaning they’ll be entering just its second season as Rashad enters his freshman campaign.

The coaching staff, when recruiting Rashad, told him they believe he could be the program’s first All-American.

“There’s a future there,” Rashad simply said of the young program.

Rashad will be studying education during at Lackawanna and plans to transfer to a four-year school once he completes his two years at Lackawanna. He would one day like to become a physical education teacher – and maybe a wrestling coach, he says.

Sports Editor Ben Heck can be reached at bheck@newszap.com.

You are encouraged to leave relevant comments but engaging in personal attacks, threats, online bullying or commercial spam will not be allowed. All comments should remain within the bounds of fair play and civility. (You can disagree with others courteously, without being disagreeable.) Feel free to express yourself but keep an open mind toward finding value in what others say. To report abuse or spam, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box.