Skip to content

Nate Graves Named New Leader of Gilbert Girls Wrestling Program

2006 GHS graduate excited to get started

Nate Graves knows what it’s like to wrestle with the red and black G on his chest. And now he’ll have the opportunity to build his own program under the Tigers’ grappling umbrella.

A 2006 Gilbert High School graduate and an assistant coach with the Tigers’ wrestling program since 2018, Graves was officially named the new head coach of the Gilbert girls’ wrestling program earlier this month.

Graves takes the reins from Scott Auderer, who served as the head coach of the girls and boys teams over the past two seasons. Auderer will maintain his role as the head coach of the boys program.

A valued Gilbert assistant coach for six seasons, Graves worked primarily with the girls throughout the 2023-24 season, which made him a natural fit to take over in a head coaching capacity.

“I’m really excited,” Graves said of his ascension to a leading role. “I’ve kind of hoped and envisioned over the years that it might happen in some fashion, and the girls have been really fun to work with over the past few years. I’ve got daughters of my own who are growing up and getting into the sport, so it’s exciting to build something they might fit into someday.”

Iowa became the 34th state to officially have girls wrestling when the Iowa Girls High School Athletic Union sanctioned the sport prior to the start of the 2022-23 season, and Graves has played a key role in one of the state’s bigger programs over the past two seasons. Gilbert’s first official team housed 20 wrestlers, and that number increased to 25 this past winter.

Gilbert has sent three girls to the state tournament over the past two seasons. Alex Harswick was a fourth-place medalist in 2023.

The numbers have been fantastic, and Graves is hopeful the enthusiasm will continue to grow. The sport is new to many Gilbert student-athletes, but he enjoys the teaching aspect that comes when working with inexperienced wrestlers.

“I’ve always enjoyed the teaching side of it and it’s cool when you get to see a lot of those lightbulb moments,” Graves said. “It’s fun to see a lot of these girls get into it. Most of these girls the past few years, it has been their first time on the mat and so it’s been a lot of focus on the basics and working on core concepts.”

Graves and his wife, Laura, have three children. Daughters Scottie, 7, and Izzy, 4, will attend Gilbert Elementary in the fall; Scottie will be in the second grade, while Izzy will be in preschool.  The couple also has an infant son, Gable.

Congratulations to Nate and the entire Graves family. We look forward to seeing him flourish in his new role with the Gilbert girls wrestling program.

Gilbert Community School District

Gilbert Community School District

103 Mathews Drive, Gilbert, Iowa 50105  |  (515) 232-3740