Claflin’s Men Head Basketball Coach & The Citadel Head Wresting Coach Rob Hjerling Set To Keynote 31st Annual HSSR Winter Awards All-State Banquet At Seawell’s April, 23
From Staff Reports
Columbia-- Ricky Jackson, the heads mens basketball coach at Claflin and Rob Hjerling, the head men’s wrestling coach at The Citadel are set to address more than 300 HSSR basketball and wreslting all-state honorees from the 2016-17 winter sports seson in South Carolina at Seawells on Sunday April, 23 at 3 p.m.
“We are pleased to have both sports represented by head college basketball and wrestling coaches from within the state and we are looking forward to hearing a few brief remarks from both coaches and to have them serve as awards presenters also,” said HSSR Publisher Billy G. Baker.
Coach Jackson has just compelted his fourth season as the head men’s basketball at Claflin University. Jackson joined the Claflin staff in 2013 after serving as men’s top assistant at Shaw University.
Jackson’s teams have made improvements in each of his four seasons. After winning just 10 games in his first season, his teams have won 16 games in each of the last two campaigns. Last season (2015-16), Jackson’s team was in the mix for the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference East Division title, tying Morehouse for second place in the division, just one game behind division champion Benedict. His 2015-16 team also reached the semi-final round of the SIAC Tournament for the first time since the 2009-10 season. His 2016-17 team finished with a very respectable 17-10 record.
During his short time at Claflin, Jackson has coached a SIAC Defensive Player of the Year, along with several SIAC first and second team members.
Coach Hjerling is in his 18th year as the head coach at The Citadel and has seen his wrestlers reach lofty heights during his successful tenure.
Three Bulldog wrestlers have garnered spots on the All-America team the past two years after claiming only one such distinction in the prior history of the program. Turtogtokh Luvsandorj finished sixth at the 2014 NCAA Championships, capping off a career which saw him earn his second Southern Conference Wrestler of the Year award while setting a school record with 135 wins.
Hjerling joined The Citadel staff for the 1999-00 season after spending the previous year as an assistant at George Mason, where he helped the Patriots to a runner-up finish in the Colonial Athletic Association while coaching four NCAA qualifiers
He was an assistant at his alma mater, American University, from 1996-98, coaching five NCAA qualifiers during those two seasons. He got his start in coaching at Manheim Township (Pa.) High School as an assistant coach during the 1995-96 campaign.
As a senior at American, Hjerling posted a 28-4 overall record, captured the Colonial Athletic Association championship at 158, garnered CAA Most Outstanding Wrestler honors and earned a berth in the NCAA Championships. He completed his wrestling career with 69 victories.