CTR Home Internal  Relations and Communications Home About CTR Publication Schedule CTR Archives

October 24, 2002 FTo the victor go the spoils: wrestling at Concordia



by John Austen

Concordia wrestling coach Victor Zilberman has always been on the leading edge of inter-university wrestling. With six national championships under his belt since he took over Concordia’s program 25 years ago, he is one of Montreal’s most successful coaches.

“I always wish that this sport received more recognition because of the great athleticism involved, said Zilberman in an interview once. “I know we don’t get the same coverage as hockey and football, and it’s a shame, really.”

Zilberman says that wrestling is the “best sport around” and he’s always looking for new recruits to the program.

“We were winning all the time in the ’80s, and we’d like to get to that point again,” he said.

“This form of wrestling doesn’t get the respect it deserves. It’s great for a person’s all-around support and well-being.”

Zilberman’s charges performed magnificently at the Concordia Invitational Wrestling championship, held last month at Concordia Gym. The Stingers men’s team won the event with 24 points, two ahead of second-place Brock University and four up on the University of New Brunswick, which finished third. The Concordia women settled for seventh place, nine points behind first-place Memorial College.

Anthony Ronci, a first-year industrial engineering student, took first-place honours in the 68-kilogram category. Jason Chen, who won bronze at Nationals in 2000, was second at 72 kg.

Other strong performances came from Martin Pit Bradley and Sana Kavanagh.

Other schools competing included MWC, McMaster, CLIC, Queen’s, Black Bear, CLAC, Vanier, St. Césaire, Hamilton, LAWAC and Western.

Zilberman has been named coach of the year twice — in 1984 and ’86. Under his tutelage, Concordia wrestlers have won more than 30 medals at the CIAU National Championships and on five occasions Concordia athletes have been named outstanding wrestler at the Nationals.

Zilberman has been a member of the Canadian coaching staff at four Olympic Games. He has coached Canadian athletes at world championships as well as at the national and provincial levels.

The wrestling program at Concordia has seen many top-notch athletes go through their program. Martine Dugrenier, Tamara Medwidsky and Chen have all recently won medals on the Nationals stage.

Other members of Concordia’s 2002 team include Christopher Chung, Martine Dugrenier, Leila El-Kayem, Vahid Farashahi, George Georgiou, Frederic Koomsaitra, Adreane L’Ecuyer. The assistant coach is Rob Moore.