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1976 - 77 Season

14th Season 10-4 (142-43-3 career record);

Team Captain Gary Rader


From the Yearbook:

Determination by the wrestlers enabled them to top all expectations for the 1976-77 season. Their winning attitudes were significant in copping the Colonial League Title by defeating Saucon Valley 33-19. This was the first victory over Saucon since 1973.

With an overall record of 10-4, the four losses came from powerful independent teams from Easton, Council Rock, Liberty, and Freedom, all who rank in the top 10 in the state. Coach Nunamaker psyched his team out with his famous prophecies. One of them is remembered by Tom Franczak: "You can have fun in practice and work hard on the mat, or you can work hard in practice and have fun during the meet." Led by Captain Gary Rader, the team ended an exciting season for the graduating wrestlers.

Even disappointments didn't stop the team. Wehn two district hopefulls, Jeff Tripp who was benched following knee surgery, and Todd Lahr was unable to compete due to illness, the replacements came through with flying colors.

Dual Meet Results:

  • Nazareth 53, Salisbury 3
  • Nazareth 34, Lehighton 15
  • Nazareth 50, Palisades 0
  • Nazareth 11, Easton 33
  • Nazareth 44, Catasauqua 9
  • Nazareth 34, Wilson 15
  • Nazareth 17, Freedom 26
  • Nazareth 33, Saucon Valley 19
  • Nazareth 54, Pen Argyl 6
  • Nazareth 51, Northampton 3
  • Nazareth 20, Liberty 28
  • Nazareth 35, Bangor 10
  • Nazareth 41, Southern Lehigh 9
  • Nazareth 17, Council Rock 32


From The Morning Call on the cold of early 1977:

"I remember we could come in, and at times I remember seeing steam coming out of the kids' mouths, the room was so cold," recalled Ray Nunamaker, who that winter was in the 14th season of his hall of fame wrestling coaching career at Nazareth. "We ran a lot, because couldn't do a whole lot on the mats; at 50 degrees, they're not real soft."

Nazareth wins the Colonial League.

Nazareth did not have a wrestler advance to the District finals.

Future coach John Rodriquez of Saucon Valley won his first title over John Knox of Liberty 7-6.

Of interest, future Nazareth Middle School Principle and referee Bob Kern defeated fellow future referee Gene Waas 13-5 at 112 wrestling for Freedom and Bethlehem Catholic respectively.

Graduating in 1977 for the Blue Eagles (with 30 or more career wins):

  • Gary Rader 32-21-2 with 8 pins
  • Jim Evanko 30-12-1 with 1 pin

Individual Results:

  • R. Albert: 10-7
  • K. Fairman: 13-6
  • S. Getz: 7-10
  • R. Manini: 17-5
  • J. Sofka: 1-3
  • B. Boyer: 14-6-1
  • T. Lahr: 9-3
  • G. Leh: 0-2
  • R. Schneebeli: 1-3
  • J. Tripp: 13-1
  • J. Evanko: 16-5-1
  • T. Franczak: 13-6
  • K. Kulp: 14-8-2
  • C. Miller: 12-10
  • G. Rader: 15-6-1
  • C. Richards: 2-2-1
  • S. Rodger: 1-2

Gary Rader finishes his career with the 9th (32) most wins in school history; Jim Evanko is tied for 13th (30).

Jim Evanko ties the school record for takedowns in a season (40). Craig Miller is 11th all-time with pins in a career (10). Jeff Trip is 5th overall with pins per season (12).