ELMIRA, N.Y. (WETM) – On Monday, the Twin Tiers lost a local wrestling legend.
Jim McCloe, who coached the Waverly High School wrestling program for 33 years, passed away in Virginia. He was 69. A cause of death hasn’t been released, but McCloe leaves a legacy that may never be duplicated again in the area.
An Upstate New York Chapter Hall of Fame member of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame, McCloe coached some of the state’s best wrestlers of all-time. McCloe took the Wolverine program from humble beginnings and made them a nationally-ranked program in the 1980’s. In all, produced 40 Section IV Champions, seven New York State Champions, and several All-Americans. He registered an immaculate 465-119 overall record in his time at Waverly as head wrestling coach.
Alongside his assistant coach, Charlie Hughes, Waverly became the top program in the Twin Tiers under McCloe’s guidance.
In 1987, McCloe took the Wolverines to an 11th National ranking and then 22nd in 1988. A proud graduate of Waverly, McCloe was a 1971 NJCAA Champion at Delhi in 1971 and he subsequently finished his wrestling career at East Carolina. McCloe retired from Waverly in 2007 as coach and athletic director.
18 Sports pays tribute to McCloe, a hall of fame coach and person who changed area wrestling forever.