The same program that snared a National Junior College Athletic Association team wrestling championship and Coach of the Year honor on Feb. 26 will give new life to one of Oakdale High’s most decorated prep grapplers in school history this fall.
Three-time California Interscholastic Federation championship qualifier, two time state medalist and 2011 Sac-Joaquin Section champion — Trent Noon — will continue his wrestling career as a Clackamas Community College Oregon Cougar when the program opens its season in October.
Noon was seventh at the state tournament last year and fifth at state this year, exploits that earned him attention and ultimately a scholarship from 2011 NJCAA coach of the year, Josh Rhoden.
Noon said he spoke with Rhoden a lot in the past few months, and signed a letter of intent in late April, committing him to the national champion Cougars.
He will compete on funds provided by the maximum scholarship that Clackamas can offer, a package that pays for everything but living expenses and books.
It’s an excellent opportunity for Noon to develop the skills he garnered in Oakdale’s youth wrestling system with his father (Brendt Noon) and under high school coaches Brian Stevens and Dan Casey.
“I’m real excited to get out of town and take a step forward,” Noon said on Sunday. “It’s going to be weird not wrestling with guys like A.C (Brown) and Shane (Tate), who I wrestled with since I was in junior high.
“It will work out for all of us I hope.”
Noon said he will room with Clovis standout Clinton McAlester and expects to join 2011 state runner-up, Shane Yacuta of Porterville, on the list of true freshman Cougars. The team graduates just three of their six NCJAA All Americans, and should easily contend for another national championship in 2012.
“I talked with coach Rhoden and he has some really high expectations for the wrestling program and our academics,” Noon said. “I just want to get high school out of the way so I can get started at Clackamas.”
Noon hasn’t stopped honing the skill sets that made him a prolific prep wrestler for the SJS. He claimed a Reno World Championship earlier this year and landed a first place medal at the 2011 California Freestyle Championships on Sunday.
In both tournaments, he ran through competition with virtually no resistance, pining or tech-falling every opponent.
It’s the type of dominance Oakdale coaches have come to expect from a lanky wrestler who dominates from the top position and lands canny takedowns from his feet.
“Trent developed a lot later than these other guys and he is making huge strides to improve,” Oakdale coach Brian Stevens said. “I could really see him becoming an All American. He is making a lot of really good wrestlers look like they are just terrible lately.”
Noon said he will likely take on the Fargo Nationals in July, and expects to see plenty of Division I college opposition when Clackamas takes on open tournaments in their preseason.
The tournaments offer some terrific exposure for an Oakdale wrestler with an eye on a scholarship with a Division I school in the future.”
“I would like to go to a four-year school when I’m ready, and I would like to either win a junior college national championship or become a JC All American,” Noon said. “Clackamas is a really good school and I think it’s a great place for me to continue my career.”