After placing 9th in State in 1980, Ron Ray's team was State Champions in 1982 with 72 1/2 points.
Bernard Giles State Champ 138 lbs. 1979
Bloom's Coach Zuidema places team in 7th place. 1979
Walter Futrell 119 lbs. 1st Place
First State Champion
Athlete for TRAIL 77
1959 Bloom's First State Champion Wrestler
INDIVIDUAL Wrestling State Champions
4th in State Heavyweight Leroy Blackful 1959
State Champion 120 pound '59 Jim Stevens
Wrestlers took 9th in state in 1959 with Jim Stevens winning the state meet at the 120 pound division and Leroy Blackful taking 4th as a heavyweight.
Erikson was inducted into the Illinois Wrestling Coaches and Officials Association Hall of Fame in 1996, the National Junior College Athletic Association Hall of Fame in 1997, and the Indiana High School Coaches Associates Hall of Fame in 2009.
“It was such a big deal for our school, which was only in its sixth year at the time,” said Ray, a former principal at Bloom Trail. “It put the school on the map and did a lot for our communities. Reflecting back, I thought it was going to be easy to win state championships and we’d do this every year. Now, I realize some guys coach their whole lifetimes and don’t come close. It was just a special group. They were dynamite.”
“Getting off of I-57 at the Lincoln Highway exit and seeing a fire truck, we thought something was wrong, but it was a welcome parade for us,” McFarland said. “When we went through Ford Heights, which was and still is one of the most impoverished communities in the country, it really meant a lot to us. That day was a happy one there and to bring something like that to the community was special.”
Dubbed the “Fantastic Five” by a local reporter at the time, the Trojans were led by state qualifiers Chris McFarland (145 pounds), Reggie Wilson (155), Derrick Williams (167), Rory Drake (185) and the late James Irons (heavyweight).
YEAR RECORD Individual/Team Coach
1975-76 10-3- Coach Mike Fendley
1976-77 14-2 Walter Futrell---1st in State---119 lbs Coach Ron Ray
1977-78 12-5 Harold Moore---6th Place---145 lbs Coach Ron Ray
1978-79 12-4 District Champions Coach Ron Ray
1979-80 20-1 District, Sectional Champs – 9th in State Coach Ron Ray
Lenal Brinson---5th place---105 lbs Carl Davis---5th place---167 lbs
1980-81 14-4 District, Sectional Champs Coach Ron Ray
James Irons---2nd place--Heavyweight
1981-82 15-4 STATE CHAMPIONS!!! Coach Ron Ray
District, Sectional, State Champs
1 Chicago Hts. Bloom Trail 72.5
2 Carol Stream Glenbard North 61.5
3 Waukegan East 60.5
1982-83 10-8 James Irons---1st in State Heavyweight Coach Ron Ray
Chris McFarland---2nd place---145 lbs
Reginald Wilson---2nd place---155 lbs
1983-84 Regional Champions Coach Ron Ray
1987-88 9-1 Coach Gabe Damiani
1988-89 11-5 Coach Tom Tong
1989-90 10-8 Regional Champions Coach Tom Tong
Stanley Johnson---6th place---189 lbs
1990-91 12-7 Coach Tom Tong
1991-92 11-8 Coach Tom Tong
1992-93 11-7 Coach Tom Tong
James Woods NCAA National Champion Alum Tom Erickson, Wrestling Alum Gabe Damiani Wrestling
Tom Koeing , Coach staff Greg Zuidema, Coach Staff
TRAIL /BLOOM TROJAN RECORDS
Thomas L. Koenig Celebrates 50 Years In Wrestling. Graduated from Shurz High School in Chicago....attended University of Illinois (wrestling scholarship) also received his Masters Degree from University of Illinois. He left teaching to pursue a career in Hospital Administration. Tom married Eloise in 1965. They had two children, Susan Koenig Brown, and the late Mark Koenig.
Erikson is a graduate of Bloom High School in Chicago Heights, Illinois. Wrestling for Triton College, he was a two-time NJCAA Collegiate Champion in 1984 and 1985. He was also a two-time NCAA Division I Collegiate wrestling All-American, in 1986 and 1987, while competing for Oklahoma State University.
Trojan Wrestling History
FEATURED TROJAN ATHLETE
STATE CHAMPS BLOOM TRAIL 1982
STATE CHAMPS BLOOM 1975
Ken Thompson wrestles 132 lbs and 145 lbs to win State 2 years in a row.
Bloom Produces State Champion Athlete 2 years in a row 1986-87
State Champ James Irons
Heavyweight TRAIL 1982
Tom Koenig's team won State 1975
Keith Hulbert at 98 lbs.
Robert Fleming at 167 lbs.
Ed O'Brien '70
State Champ 115 lbs.
Geoff Grublesky '70 State Champ 185 lbs.
Bloom's team did not place in State again until 1970 when two athletes both won State. Bloom placed fourth that year.
TWO TIME STATE CHAMPION
KEN THOMPSON '87
JOE LUECKE '87
Robert Fleming '75
Coach Koenig, Robert Fleming and Keith Hulbert bring home the State Championship Trophy. Both wrestlers won State along with the team for the best Bloom wrestling season ever. 1975 Koenig was named Coach of the Year by the Illinois Wrestling Association. Robert Fleming was named Outstanding Illinois Wrestler. Bloom was honored at the Illinois Wrestling Assoc banquet for being the first team ever to have 2 All-Americans.
ALL-AMERICAN BLOOM WRESTLERS
ROBERT FLEMING '75
KEITH HULBERT '75
Greatest year in Bloom's wrestling history 1975 ?
Both Robert Fleming and Keith Hulbert won state titles, had the exact same records for the season 37 wins 0 losses, and new school records. Two national organizations selected Hulbert to the All-American squad. Fleming was also named All-American. He was also invited to wrestle against the two time national Polish wrestler in an exchange meet . Fleming had the fastest pin in the competition pinning his opponent in 26 seconds.
Ron was an IHSA 5th place winner in 1971 . He was
NJCAA Champion in 1972, NJCAA Champion in 1973 and also named Outstanding Wrestler. Competing at OSU from 1974-75, Ron Ray was a two-time All-American and won the NCAA individual championship at 167 pounds in 1975.
Ray compiled a 47-7-1 record during his two seasons with the Cowboys that included 13 falls and 15 superior decisions.
RON RAY Two-time All-American and NCAA individual champion at Oklahoma State in 1975.
JAMES WOODS '70
Jim Woods, Western Illinois - Jim Woods won both the NCAA Division I and Division II heavyweight titles in 1974. Woods rallied from a 4-2 deficit after two periods in the finals to defeat Gary Ernst of Michigan for the Division I title.
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