|Title:||Class of 2018|
Bob Soares is the latest of Grebby's Grapplers from the early to mid-1980s to earn a spot in the WPI Athletic Hall of Fame.
"Coming from a family of wrestling brothers, Bob arrived at WPI already a well-skilled wrestler with great technique and knowledge,” remarked former coach Phil Grebinar.
The 1985–86 co-captain went unbeaten (10-0-1) in duals with four pins, and ascended to the top of the 134-pound podium to help lead the team to a runner-up finish in the region. WPI also avenged its only loss the previous year to Harvard.
As a junior, Bob was second as an individual while the program won the 1984–85 New England Championship. During the dual meet season, Bob posted an 8-1-1 ledger.
Grebinar continued, “Bob ‘the Rat’ is a great addition to our already stacked lightweights, joining Hall of Famers Rich Testa and Roland Marquis. We made great use of these guys getting individual matchups against the opponents that would favor a WPI victory. Bob had a great attitude, fantastic work ethic, and a personality that could lighten up a hard, strenuous practice. He is truly one of WPI Wrestling's best."
Combined with a 14-3 record in his first two seasons, Bob was 32-4-2 to currently rank 10th with an .868 winning percentage. He also contributed 177 points and four pins.
“When Bob ‘The Rat’ Sores was fired up he was an unstoppable machine," recalled Hall of Fame teammate Jason Benoit. "He could have beaten anyone on a good day ... anyone! The whole time I wrestled with ‘The Rat’ I was convinced that I could beat him, if I could just get his ‘Mills Half’ off my neck and get my face out of the mat. I’m still pretty sure I could have beaten him, if I could have just gotten away from his grip and controlled my own hands again. Lucky for 'The Rat' I could never do any of those things!"
The 2017 Rhode Island High School Wrestling Hall of Fame inductee was also busy off the mat. As a member of Phi Kappa Theta, Bob joined Big Brothers Big Sisters in 1984.
A native of Warwick R.I., Bob graduated with a BS in mechanical engineering. He has worked for several companies in manufacturing engineering, process engineering management, quality engineering, and quality management. He is currently at Larson Tool & Stamping in Attleboro Mass., as the company’s quality manager.
He has continued his involvement in the sport of wrestling as an official at the high school level in RI since 1986 and officiated for seven years at the collegiate level in New England. He has coached at a local private Judo and Wrestling Club, Mayo Quanchi, in Coventry R.I. since 2008 and holds a black belt in Judo. He is active in youth wrestling in Rhode Island as a coach and as Director of Officials for the RIWA, where he trains, assigns, and mentors high school students in officiating youth wrestling. Bob and Donna, his wife of 26 years, reside in Warwick. They have a son John and daughter Casey.