Gerald Hoerth

Gerald Hoerth (middle) stepped down last week after 13 seasons as Chilton Tiger varsity wrestling coach. His son Jay and wife Michelle join him in the photo.

For the first time in nearly two decades, a member of the Hoerth family will not be at the helm of the Chilton Tiger wrestling team when the 2020-21 season begins in November.

Gerald Hoerth announced publicly last week that he is stepping down as head coach after 13 seasons of making the Tigers a force on the mat.

“I just thought it was the right time,” he told the Tri-County News prior to a team banquet last week that had been delayed due to the CORONA-19 pandemic.

“I wanted to leave the program in great shape for whomever is next.”

Any follower of CHS wrestling would respond “mission accomplished.”

The Hoerth dynasty

Gerald Hoerth became head coach in November 2007 taking over for his brother Robert Hoerth. Robert had coached Chilton for two seasons taking over for another brother in the Hoerth clan, Wayne.

Gerald’s son Jay, a former Tiger wrestling standout, served as an assistant coach in the program, but has not applied to succeed his father.

The unfortunate death of Robert Hoerth in a snowmobiling accident this past January played no part in Gerald’s decision to step down.

“No doubt, it was a tough year losing Robert,” stated Gerald.

“But this senior class was special for me. This is the first time that I had nine seniors finish the program as four-year lettermen and I think going out with them made the timing right. I hope to still be involved in the program, but it will be well in the background, probably with our great youth program.”

Those seniors were state qualifiers Dylan Anhalt, Devin Aull, Joe Boehnlein, Trent Breckheimer, Phoenix Ladd, Gaven Lisowe, Kaiden Mikalowsky, Maverik Ott and Bryce Wurm.

Of those nine, five were state qualifiers, the most Hoerth has taken to Madison. They were Boehnlein, Breckheimer, Lisowe, Mikalowsky and Ott. The first three were state medalists.

Behind the scenes

Hoerth was asked if he had a favorite moment as Tiger coach.

“The two team state qualifiers were very nice because it’s the team thing,” he responded.

“And I had state individual qualifiers all 13 years as head coach. That’s pretty special too. But just as important was having my wife Michelle and son Jay involved in the program. They’re the computer people. The organizers. It made my job so much easier. They did so much with the high school and the youth programs.”

Chilton Activities Director Corey Behnke said the search for the new Tiger head wrestling coach has been ongoing and a successor to Hoerth should be coming in the very near future.

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