Arabians assistant coach joins USA Wrestling

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Pendleton Heights High School assistant wrestling Katie Kriebel coach enjoy a fun moment with head coach Dave Cloud circa 2018.

PENDLETON — Pendleton Heights assistant wrestling coach Katie Kriebel is moving on to a new venture in her life as she was named Assistant National Women’s Coach for USA Wrestling.

She will be part of the USA Wrestling National Teams Department in Colorado Springs, working on the women’s coaching staff alongside head coach Terry Steiner and the National Women’s Developmental Coach Jessica Medina at the U.S Olympic and Paralympic Training, where USA Wrestling is based

Kriebel has been with the Arabian program since 2003 but had already made her mark in women’s wrestling long before its evolution into a mainstream competition.

In the 1990s, when Kriebel (then Downing) started wrestling, few girls were involved in the sport. By the time she was a senior, she was wrestling varsity and placed third in sectional at a time when only the top two finishers went on to the regional.

She won a Junior World Silver medal in 1999 and went on to win World Bronze medals for Team USA in 2005 and 2007, as well as a three-time U.S. Open champion.

Kriebel attended the University of Minnesota-Morris, which at the time was one of the first colleges to have a women’s wrestling program.

During her stint at Pendleton Heights, Kriebel not only served as an assistant coach but was instrumental in starting the Krieb’s Club Wrestling group, named in honor of her friend, wrestling coach and eventual relative-through-marriage Eric Kriebel, who passed away in 2003.

Kriebel has encouraged and supported the growth of girls joining and competing as Arabian wrestlers. She also has been a strong advocate for the IHSAA sanctioning of girls wrestling in the state of Indiana.

In 2010, Kriebel was inducted into the Indiana High School Wrestling Hall of Fame.

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