Anchoring the returning starters is Zane Hake, last year’s CCS Runner up at 170 pounds who you will immediately recognize from his inhuman physique. A state medal looks to be in the cards for him this season. Tre Orlando is another returning CCS medalist (5th at 120 pounds) who can also expect a trip to the state meet in March. Others to watch include Gennaro Fiorillo, the WCAL Runner Up at 145 pounds as well as Diego Diaz, 2nd in WCAL at 160s. Both competitors seek dominate league this year and place high in CCS.
Coach Corona’s ambition for the team is very bold. After last year’s WCAL Team Title and 4th place finish at the Central Coast Section Championships, Matt hopes to improve on that legacy, bringing the program back to the prominence it once held. He has already tapped into the rich history and tradition of the program and has gained enthusiastic alumni support. Next year expect another WCAL Championship for the Bells and some CCS hardware for the team. Coach’s ultimate goal, however, is to dethrone his alma-mater and juggernaut Gilroy as the best team in the Central Coast Section as well as to become a perennial Top 10 team in the state. Knowing Matt’s work ethic, commitment, and care for his athletes, I wouldn’t bet against him!
2019 ushers in a new era of Bellarmine wrestling with the hiring of Matt Corona, a Gilroy native and legend in Bay Area Wrestling. In high school, Matt placed 4th at the CIF State Championships in 1994 for Gilroy High School (where he was awarded GHS Athlete of the Year) and was a 4 time California National Team Member. Coach Corona took his talents to CSU Bakersfield where he wrestled for the iconic T.J. Kerr and was a member of two PAC 10 Championship teams. Matt also excelled in Olympic style wrestling becoming a 2X Open Freestyle State Champion as well as a 2X Open Greco Roman State Champion. Never to be deterred by age, Matt most recently placed 5th place in the 2015 Masters World Championships in Freestyle and was the 2016 Masters National Champion in Greco Roman wrestling.
Matt has been a Physical Education instructor the ESUHD for the last 16 years and has been an assistant coach for Gilroy High School during their unprecedented run of 17 straight CCS team titles. Coach Corona excels in helping wrestlers attain elite status as well as developing novices into quality competitors and human beings. He is a man of great integrity, honesty, and humility who maintains a very student centered philosophy, believing that relationships between teammates and between athletes and coaches is paramount to the success of any program. Matt is already hard at work building those bonds with this year’s squad.