GORHAM, Maine – University of Southern Maine Husky wrestling standout, Dan Del Gallo (Gardiner, Maine), was recently honored by the Maine Amateur Wrestling Alliance earning the distinction of the Jim Aguiar College Wrestler of the Year. The honor was one of many for the Huskies' most decorated wrestler after an outstanding senior year that culminated in the 2017 NCAA Division III National Championship title at 149 pounds. Along with Del Gallo's honor, former University of Southern Maine head coach Joe Pistone, and former Husky grappler Matt Lindsay were inducted into the Maine Amateur Wrestling Alliance (MAWA) Hall of Fame.
The head coach at Mattanawcook Academy in Lincoln, Maine, Lindsay was a four-time state champion wrestler at Penquis Valley High School (1995-1998). Lindsay continued his wrestling career at the University of Southern Maine during the fledgling years of the Huskies' program, compiling a strong 20-10 record. Lindsay earned All-New England honors, finishing sixth overall, at the 1999 New England Division III tournament. Since completing his competition days, Lindsay has worked as a wrestling official and has served as a coach at Mattanawcook since 2012.
Pistone, the head coach of the Huskies' wrestling team for 13 seasons, coaching his final season in 2014-2015. Over his tenure, Pistone develop and grow the program to national success, coaching wrestlers to nine appearances in the NCAA Division III tournament, two All-Americans, 12 NCAA Scholar-All-Americans, and numerous All-Region wrestlers. In his final season with the Huskies', Pistone's team set a program best with 16 dual meet victories. Pistone finished with a record of 143-118-2 as USM's head coach.
Active in the Maine wrestling community, Pistone served as Vice President of the NCAA New England Wrestling Association (2010-2012), and was the Division III New England Wrestling Association president from 2012-2014. He also held leadership positions in the Maine Amateur Wrestling Association.
The USM's most decorated wrestler, Del Gallo put an exclamation point on his outstanding career as a Husky becoming the University's first wrestling national champion, capturing the 149-pound title at the 2017 NCAA Division III National Championship in La Crosse, Wisconsin. Making his third appearance (2015, 2016, 2017) appearance at the NCAA National Championship, Del Gallo achieved a number of milestones during his historic run to a national title, establishing a new all-time win record for Huskies' wrestling, and becoming USM's third All-American.
A two-time (2015, 2016) NCAA Elite 90 award winner, presented to the student-athlete with the highest cumulative grade point average participating at the finals site for each of the NCAA's 90 championship sports, Del Gallo earned first team CoSIDA Academic All-American honors in 2017. He completed his remarkable career with an outstanding record of 137-19 over four seasons, and a near-perfect record of 45-1 as a senior.