Good counsel students heading into school

GC News Details

Aug. 31, 2020 – Skylar Saar, who led the Our Lady of Good Counsel High School wrestling program to national prominence and coached an Olympic gold medalist, returns as head coach.

"I'm excited to be back," Saar said. "Being able to be at practice every day will be great. I'm going to enjoy the challenge."

Good Counsel Athletic Director Steve Howes is also happy to welcome back a fellow GC graduate.

"Skylar led our wrestling team to unprecedented heights, mentoring exceptional wrestlers like Olympian Kyle Snyder and many others," Howes said. "Our student-athletes deserve the best opportunity to maximize their talents, and I know Skylar can do that again.

"We want Good Counsel athletics to be synonymous with excellence in all sports. I'm excited to watch our wrestling program grow and develop under Skylar's guidance."

After leading the Falcons from 2004 to 2017, Saar served as an assistant the past two seasons under Kevin Phelps.

Howes didn't have to go far to find Saar. He has been Good Counsel's strength and conditioning coach since 2004 and teaches physical education and international baccalaureate exercise science.

Saar guided the Falcons to five Washington Catholic Athletic Conference championships (2011, 2013-16). In 2013 and '16, his teams won the Maryland Independent Schools state title. Both of those squads were also ranked in the Top 50 nationally.

The Washington Post named Saar 2013 All-Met Coach of the Year. His Maryland colleagues accorded him the same honor three years later. He has coached 19 individual state champions.

Saar helped Kyle Snyder post a 179-0 record from 2011-13 and win three National Prep championships. Snyder became a four-time All-American at Ohio State and three-time NCAA champion. He won world titles in 2015 and '17 at 97 kilograms. In 2016, Saar traveled to Rio de Janeiro to see his former star win an Olympic gold medal.

Snyder is among several of Saar's wrestlers who have gone on to wrestle in college. Snyder's brother, Kevin, followed him to Ohio State after winning a state championship. Stephen Snyder, a two-time state winner, wrestled at Army.

Kevin Budock, who won three state crowns (2014-16) and was runner-up at nationals three times, went to Old Dominion. Bailey Thomas, a two-time state champion, captured the National Prep title at 152 pounds in 2017. He attended Appalachian State. Spencer Neff wrestled at Duke.

Prior to graduating from Good Counsel as an honor roll student in 1998, Saar wrestled for four years at 152. He placed at state his final three seasons and was named second-team All-Met as a senior.

Saar played four years of rugby at James Madison University and graduated in 2002 with a degree in kinesiology. In 2006, he added a master's in exercise physiology from California University of Pennsylvania.

Saar is a certified specialist in strength and conditioning and performance enhancement. He and his wife, Sarah, a Good Counsel science teacher, live in Derwood, Md., with their daughter, Everly.