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Saturday, December 29, 2012

Saturday results 12-29-12 updated

I was able to find computer access for a few minutes, so here's an abbreviated post.

Southmoreland
I had a bunch of local teams at Southmoreland. Here are the complete brackets. Local champs are: Josh Patrick (Ligonier Valley, 126), Cody Law (Forest Hills, 170) and Levi Albright (North Star, 220).
Runners-up are: Triston Law (Forest Hills, 113), Justin Patrick (Ligonier Valley, 120), Tanner Hetrick (Meyersdale, 132).Butler ran away with the team title. Northern Bedford finished tied for third while Blairsville and Meyersdale went 5-6 to lead the District 5 and 6 teams. (Thanks to the reader who pointed out that NBC was tied for third, not in fourth alone.)

POWERade
Westmont Hilltop finished 36th out of 44 teams at the prestigious POWERade tournament. Don Shovestull finished one victory short of placing at 220 pounds. The highlight of the night (of course) was Chance Martstellar's finals match with Cody Wiercioch. It's likely one of the best matches you'll ever see CLICK HERE TO WATCH IT.

Redbank Valley
Berlin Brothersvalley finished second at the Redbank Valley tournament. The Mountaineers had three champs (Chris Miller, Blake Miller and Stew Trulick) and 12 placewinners.
106 Emil Kiesnowski 8th,
113 Tommy DeArmitt 4th
120 Joey Swank 4th
126 E.J. Custer 2nd,
132 Chris Miller 1st,
138 Braden Fochtman 6th,
145 Eric Darr 4th
152 Blake Miller1st,
160 Bryce Fochtman 3rd
170 Trevor Moore 5th
195 Stew Trulick 1st,
220 Mitchell Walker 2nd

Top 5 teams out of 16
Redbank valley 271
Berlin 212
Cocharton 168.5Kane 139.5
Smethport 136.5

Dale Bock Memorial Tournament
Chestnut Ridge finishes second

ROUND 1
Chambersburg 58, State College 15
Chestnut Ridge 64, Fairfield 10
Bermudian Springs 67, Southern Huntingdon 11

ROUND 2
Chambersburg 50, Fairfield 21
Chestnut Ridge 42, State College 28
Bermudian Springs 62, Century, Md. 18

ROUND 3
Chambersburg 31, Chestnut Ridge 30
State College 46, Fairfield 34
Century 39, Southern Huntingdon 36

ROUND 4
Century 42, Fairfield 32
Bermudian Springs 58, State College 24

ROUND 5
Chambersburg 66, Century 9
Chestnut Ridge 37, Bermudian Springs 24
Fairfield 48, Southern Huntingdon 27

ROUND 6
Chambersburg 33, Bermudian Springs 29
Chestnut Ridge 62, Century 9
State College 57, Southern Huntingdon 24

Friday, December 28, 2012

Friday results 12-28-2012

I'm not going to be able to see any wrestling this weekend, but I got this update from Berlin Brothersvalley coach Jason Cornell, whose team is in second place at the 16-team Redbank Valley tournament after Day 1.

Berlin has 9 in semis: Tommy DeArmitt, Joey Seank, E.J Custer, Chris Miller, Braden Fochtman, Blake Miller, Bryce Fochtman, Stew Trulick and Mitchell Walker.
Still alive in consis: emil kiesnowski won, Darr, and trevor Moore

Top 3 teams
Redbank valley 107.
Berlin 93
Cocharton 87

Saturday, December 22, 2012

WestPAC Tournament results

I wasn't able to attend the WestPAC Tournament on Friday morning/afternoon at North Star, so I didn't get a chance to type in results as it went, as I normally do at an event. That makes it much harder to catch up on full results later. So, at this time, I only have individual champions. (It is a pool tournament, so there really are no finals.) If I get a chance, I'll type in full results, but I have a lot of other stuff to do first.
Despite not seeing any wrestling, I was able to talk to some coaches to put together a story on the tournament.

Champions
106-Trevor Thomas, Meyersdale.
113-Billy Charlton, Meyersdale.
120-Joey Swank, Berlin Brothersvalley.
126-Collin Day, Meyersdale.
132-Chris Miller, Berlin Brothersvalley.
138-Tevin Mostoller, North Star.
145-Tanner Cahill, Conemaugh Township.
152-Taylor Cahill, Conemaugh Township.
160-Bryce Fochtman, Berlin Brothersvalley.
170-Cody Kephart, Portage.
182-Gavin Berkley, Meyersdale.
195-Stew Trulick, Berlin Brothersvalley.
220-Levi Albright, North Star.
285-Justin Dunmyer, Meyersdale.

Friday, December 21, 2012

WestPAC Tournament preview (FRIDAY)

Note: Unfortunately, I won't be able to make it to the WestPAC tournament today. Like many of you, I'll be stuck at work, and the tournament – which has about 130 matches – should be finished before I can make it to Boswell. I hope to have a recap of the tournament this evening.

What: Second annual WestPAC Tournament (pool style).

Where: North Star High School, Boswell.

When: Beginning at 9:30 a.m. Friday. Projected finished is around 3 p.m.

The field: Berlin Brothersvalley, Conemaugh Township, Meyersdale, North Star, Portage, Shade.

Returning champions: Tommy DeArmitt, BB, (106); Kody Ofasnko, CT (113); Tanner Hetrick, MY, (126); Taylor Cahill, CT, (138); Tanner Cahill, CT (145); Gavin Berkley, MY, (160); Billy Dunbar, MY, (170).

Weight to watch: 138 pounds. In a small tournament like this, it's hard to say any weight is loaded, but this one comes as close as any. North Star sophomore Tevin Mostoller leads the way with a 5-0 mark. He was a regional qualifier and 25-match winner last season. Meyersdale's Hunter Lantz (4-0) is also undefeated, but the senior is still relatively untested. Berlin Brothersvalley freshman Braden Fochtman (7-2) has not lost to a Pennsylvania wrestler, with both of his defeat's coming to Vinney Romeo of Canandagiua Academy (N.Y.) in the Penn Cambria tournament. Fochtman has already beaten Conemaugh Township's Casey Berchick twice this season. Berchick (7-5) won 16 matches last season. Portage's Chase Fox is 7-6, meaning that every wrestler in the weight has a winning record.  

Name to know: Mitchell Walker (Berlin Brothersvalley), 220 pounds. I've already written about how much stronger Walker looks this season. He's 5-1 and finished second in the Penn Cambria tournament. His lone loss came to Jake Bennett of Hyndman, who was ranked 14th in the state according to the PA Power Rankings. That loss was 5-3 and was every bit as close as it sounds. Walker isn't a household name because he's been plagued by injury problems throughout his career, but he has enough natural ability to win a lot of matches this season.



Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Tuesday night recap 12-18-12

It was a pretty full schedule in the area and it didn’t disappoint. Tuesday night’s matches delivered the dual meet of the year, one of the best matches I’ve ever seen and at least a few jaw-dropping results.

Chestnut Ridge 39, Bedford 32
120-Sam Shank, CR, pinned Kyle Mehle, :32.
126-Ryan Easter, B, maj. dec. Derrick Claar, 12-2.
132-Garrrett Thomas, B, dec. Trent Crouse, 5-3 (SV).
138-Toby Brett, B, pinned Colby Hillegass, 3:40.
145-Dustin Bence, CR, dec. Kenny Collins, 11-8.
152-Tanner Williams, B, pinned Ben Clark, 1:44.
160-Caleb Grimes, B, dec. Kyle Winegardner, 6-1.
170-Connor Buttry, CR, pinned Niklas Wendt, :37.
182-Bradie Bollman, CR, pinned Michael Brett, :19.
195-Tyler Dibert, CR, forfeit.
220-Dan Albright, CR, pinned Chance Williams, 3:56.
285-Austin Buttry, CR, pinned Nate Shoemaker, 1:34.
106-Jonathan Gabriel, B, pinned Aaron Burkett, :25.
113-Jake Warren, B, maj. dec. Dustin Ickes, 13-0.
Records: Chestnut Ridge 2-0; Bedford 1-1.

Analysis: This was, in my mind, the dual meet of the year in my coverage area, and it lived up to the hype. A last minute schedule change allowed me to attend it and cover it for The Tribune-Democrat, and boy am I glad I did!
It was a great atmosphere, featured a stunningly quick pin and one match alone that was worth the 90-minute round trip drive to Bedford. You can read my story on the match here.
I won’t rehash all of it here, but the major surprise of the match was Bradie Bollman’s 19-second fall over Michael Brett at 182 pounds. That was the focus of the match for newspaper, but for the more wrestling-savvy audience that I have here, I’d like to focus on the 132-pound match.
PHOTO COURTESY OF TAMI KNOPSNYDER
Garrett Thomas of Bedford lifts Trent Crouse during the
overtime period of their match on Tuesday night.Thomas
secured the takedown and a 5-3 victory.
I try not to fall into hyperbole too often, but I would have to say this is one of the best bouts I’ve ever seen in a dual meet. I’ve seen guys with better credentials meet, but very rarely have I seen two very good wrestlers go at it for six minutes-plus like this.
“What a fun match, huh?” he said. “That was worth the price of admission all to itself. From the beginning, it was like two heavyweight fighters just brawling.”
The action was intense from the opening seconds, when Garrett Thomas got in deep on a double, lifted Trent Crouse into the air, but couldn’t finish as Crouse funked him. That was just a sign of things to come. With the large crowd at a fever pitch, Thomas again got in deep during the first period but couldn’t score. It was scoreless after one period and 1-0 – thanks to a Crouse escape – in the second, but the lack of scoring wasn’t due to a lack of effort. It’s hard to imagine better flurries at this level of wrestling than what Thomas and Crouse provided.
Thomas started on bottom in the third and was able to hip over for a reversal 30 seconds into the period. Crouse came close to a Peterson a few times but had to settle for a sit-out-turn-in and a 4-3 lead with 39 seconds remaining. A stalling call on Crouse with 26 seconds remaining gave Thomas a restart, but he couldn’t take advantage of it. A second stalling call with just seven seconds left in the third sent it to overtime.
Not surprisingly, it also infuriated the Ridge fans.
“Not real happy about the call, with 15 seconds to go,” Ridge coach Greg Lazor said. “A stall call on your butt – that’s one of the first times I’ve seen that. But it is what it is, and you move on and you keep going.”
I’m won’t say that it was a bad call by official Doug Fogel, as Crouse wasn’t making any effort to turn Thomas in the closing seconds, but Thomas seemed spent and wasn’t trying to score either, but I certainly wouldn’t have had the guts to make it in that situation.
Thomas found knew life in the overtime and took advantage of it, as he got in deep on another double, lifted and – this time – was able to finish for the 5-3 victory.
Some other items of note:
·         I still didn’t get to see much of heralded freshman Jonathan Gabriel. He needed just 25 seconds to pin previously unbeaten Aaron Burkett in a low-leg cradle.
·         Ryan Easter looked good in a major decision over Derrick Claar that featured a pair of defending District 5 champs.
·         Kenny Collins dominated Dustin Bence on his feet – scoring four takedowns to none – but lost his cool and the match. Collins gave up four points thanks to the new system that mixes stalling points with other violations, then refused to shake his own coach’s hand after the match.

Westmont Hilltop 50, Cambria Heights
106-Austin Lawson, WH, pinned Mark Zabinski,:54.
113-Drake Dorian, WH, tech. fall Michael Dautlick, Michael, 15-0 (5:36).
120-Dan Yost, WH, pinned Chris Poutrain, 1:49.
126-Nick Mical, WH, forfeit.
132-Joe Davis, CH, dec. Logan Blackburn, 9–5.
138-Steven Zipf, WH, dec. Michael Zabinski, 9–2.
145-Mark Barbera, WH, pinned Raymond Niebauer, 5:08.
152-Mike Walsh, WH, dec. Levi Niebauer, 13-9 (SV).
160-TravisYahner, CH, pinned Seth Ray, 3:41.
170-Colin Barron, WH, dec. Dalton Waksmunski, 6-4.
182-Riley Schropp, WH, pinned William Hoover, 3:26.
195-Tyler Crawford, CH, pinned Jake Buck, :17.
220-Don Shovestull, WH, pinned Anthony Mezzello, Anthony, :49.
285-Aaron Gill, CH, pinned Christian Roman, 2:38.
Records: Westmont Hilltop 2-0; Cambria Heights 1-1.

Analysis: I need to eat a bit of crow on this one. Last week, I said that Cambria Heights was the best team in Cambria County. Boy was I wrong. I’m not sure if I overestimated the Highlanders or underestimated Westmont Hilltop – probably a bit of both – but this one wasn’t even close. Yes, Cambria Heights was without one of its top wrestlers in Brad Thomas (not sure why at this point), but that wasn’t the difference. Even if Thomas gives CH a fall instead of a forfeit at 126, that still only makes the team score 44-27.
Matt Beaujon and his coaching staff deserve a ton of credit for finding ways to win matches. The junior high program has struggled for a few years at Westmont, and I thought it would finally catch up with them. But Beaujon finds a way to field a competitive team, no matter what he has to work with. This is far from his most talented team, but he gets improvement out of kids, whether they’re first-year wrestlers or experienced ones. He’s also one of the best in our area at anticipating matchups in dual meets and how to take advantage of them. Whether or not he can find a way to knock off a Bedford team coming to the Hilltop on Friday … that’s a different story.
It looks like there were a couple of really good bouts here. Joe Davis, a District 6 AA runner-up at 120 last year, beat Logan Blackburn, a D6-AAA champ at 106, at 132 pounds. Also of note was Mike Walsh’s 13-9, sudden victory decision over Levin Niebauer at 152.

Berlin Brothersvalley 51, Somerset 18
182-Logan Eller, S, pinned Shane Pepper, 3:08.
195-Jacob Nickelson, S, forfeit.
220-Stewart Trulick, BB, forfeit.
285: Mitchell Walker, BB, forfeit.
106-Emil Kiesnowski, BB, forfeit .
113-Garret Foster, S, dec. Tommy DeArmitt, 12-10.
120-Joey Swank, BB, pinned Tyler Walker, 5:53.
126-E.J. Custer, BB, dec. Sheldon Wagner, 6-4.
132-Chris Miller, BB, pinned Bailey Phillips, 3:10.
138-Braden Fochtman, BB, dec. Jon Fabian, 7-3.
145-Mike Laue, S, dec. Eric Darr, 5-1.
152-Blake Miller, BB, pinned Daniel Talley, :42.
160-Bryce Fochtman, BB, dec. Landon Lohr, 5-2.
170-Trevor Moore, BB, forfeit.
Records: Berlin Brothersvalley 2-0; Somerset 0-3.

Analysis: No major surprises here. Berlin, fresh off a thumping of Conemaugh Township and a Sheetz Holiday Classic title last week, is a team on the rise while Somerset is really struggling.
The Golden Eagles gave up four forfeits and got one, meaning the team score was 26-12 on the mat.
There were a few good matchups, with the highlights for me involving the young Fochtman brothers. Braden Fochtman, a freshman, beat Jon Fabian – who won 22 matches a year ago – at 138. Meanwhile, Bryce Fochtman, a sophomore, beat Landon Lohr 5-2 in a matchup of returning District 5 placewinners.
Somerset’s best win came at 113, where Garret Foster beat Tommy DeArmitt 12-10.  

Note: The following dual meets also were on the docket for Tuesday: 

  • Richland at Forest Hills, 7 p.m.
  • Penn Cambria at Greater Johnstown, 7 p.m.
  • North Star at Ligonier Valley, 7 p.m.
  • Marion Center at Portage, 7 p.m.
  • Blairsville at United, 7 p.m.
  • Conemaugh Township at Shade, 7:15 p.m.

I’ll post results and analysis as my schedule permits.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Chestnut Ridge-Bedford live results

120-Sam Shank, CR, pinned Kyle Mehle, :32.
126-Ryan Easter, B, maj. dec. Derrick Claar, 12-2.
132-Garrrett Thomas, B, dec. Trent Crouse, 5-3 (SV).
138-Toby Brett, B, pinned Colby Hillegass, 3:40.
145-Dustin Bence, CR, dec. Kenny Collins, 11-8.
152-Tanner Williams, B, pinned Ben Clark, 1:44.
160-Caleb Grimes, B, dec. Kyle Winegardner, 6-1.
170-Connor Buttry, CR, pinned Niklas Wendt, :37.
182-Bradie Bollman, CR, pinned Michael Brett, :19.
195-Tyler Dibert, CR, forfeit.
220-Dan Albright, CR, pinned Chance Williams, 3:56.
285-Austin Buttry, CR, pinned Nate Shoemaker, 1:34.
106-Jonathan Gabriel, B, pinned Aaron Burkett, :25.
113-Jake Warren, B, maj. dec. Dustin Ickes, 13-0.

Final score: CR 39-32

How can you NOT root for this kid?

I don't know Jake Beistel.
I've never seen in wrestle.
I'd never even heard of him until about five minutes ago.
But he's quickly become a guy that I'd love to see do well.
He's a freshman heavyweight at Southmoreland, and he's off to a pretty good start at 5-0 with a Chartiers-Houston tournament title under his belt.
But it's what he's doing to help others that makes him such a great story.
I won't recap much of it here, because Ken Wunderley did such a nice job of it in the Post-Gazette, but Beistel is raising money for his school's autistic support program that (in some cases) is dependent on how many wins he can pile up. It's a great cause and a great story BUT, it's not the first time Beistel has done something like this.
Read all the way to the end of the story. You'll be glad you did.
And, I'll bet if you see him at the Southmoreland tournament next weekend or maybe even at the Southwest Regional Tournament in Johnstown in a few months, you'll be rooting for him.


Just saw this info on Facebook (thanks to Bob Lichtenfels for sharing the story and the info):
Per Dave Alt: For those of you wanting to help Jake achieve his goal all you have to do is mail a check payable to the SES Activity Fund with a note that your donation is for Autism Speaks. Mail it to Southmoreland Elementary School, Attn: Leah Govi, 100 Scottie Way, Scottdale, PA 15683. If you would rather sponsor him per match please contact Leah Govi at 724-887-2020 or you can email her at govil@southmoreland.net

Sunday, December 16, 2012

The Semifinal 12-16-2012


The first full week of the regular season included some great wrestling as well as some surprises. For those of you new to the blog, the semifinal is my weekly recap/lookahead to wrestling in the Cambria/Somerset/Bedford area. Its name comes from the fact that many wrestling insiders will tell you that the semifinal round often features the best wrestling because too many guys tighten up in the finals. So, here’s the best of what I saw (or read about) from the past week.


First Period
Stars and studs: Greg Lazor’s Chestnut Ridge team earns a spot here thanks to a dual-meet demolition of North Star as well the Lions’ weekend performance, which resulted in the Mount Carmel tournament title. Six Lions – Aaron Burkett (106), Derrick Claar (126), Trent Crouse (132), Tyler Dibert (182), Dan Albright (220) and Austin Buttry (285) – captured individual championships. … Like Chestnut Ridge, Berlin Brothersvalley picked up an impressive dual-meet victory as well as the tournament title at the Sheetz Holiday Classic. The Mountaineers didn’t have any individual champs, but had 10 of their 13 wrestlers (an injury forced them to wrestle without a heavyweight) placed in the top seven in the 21-team tournament. … Ligonier Valley’s Josh Patrick, who recently committed to wrestle for Rutgers, rolled through the Sheetz tournament, including a dominating, 10-0 victory over Cambria Heights’ Brad Thomas in the 126-pound finals. … Bedford didn’t bring home a tournament title – team or individual – but the second-place performances by freshman Jonathan Gabriel and junior Ryan Easter are impressive, considering the caliber of the competition at the King of the Mountain tournament. Gabriel didn’t disappoint in his varsity debut, as he went 4-1, with his lone loss coming to Joe Wheeling of General McLane in the 106-pound finals. Easter also went 4-0 in the tournament before falling to Will Koll – son of Cornell coach Rob Koll – in the 126-pound championship.

Upset-minded: Penn Cambria’s Mike Eckenrode was unseeded but went on to win the 138-pound title at the Sheetz Holiday Classic. Eckenrode had three falls – including one over top-seeded Vinny Romeo of Canandagiua Academy – and knocked off second-seeded Rodney Brant of Mercer in the finals. … Conemaugh Township’s Taylor Cahill won the Sheetz tournament title at 152 pounds from the third seed. The sophomore took advantage of upsets by Cambria Heights’ Levi Niebauer – who beat top-seeded Mitch Fisher of Canandagiua Academy – and Portage’s Caleb Kephart – who knocked off second-seeded Ethan Charlesworth of Mount Pleasant.

Second Period
On deck: Despite a few days without any matches on our schedule, there are some intriguing matches on top. The biggest is on Tuesday night, when Chestnut Ridge travels to Bedford. This one is always a big one, but it takes on added importance this year, as the Lions look to knock off their nemesis. Also on Tuesday, Westmont Hilltop visits Cambria Heights, which could test my statement in an earlier blog that the Highlanders might be the best team in Cambria County.
Friday brings the second edition of the WestPAC tournament, which will be held at North Star.

Monday
None

Tuesday
Chestnut Ridge at Bedford, 7 p.m.
Westmont Hilltop at Cambria Heights, 7 p.m.
Richland at Forest Hills, 7 p.m.
Penn Cambria at Greater Johnstown, 7 p.m.
North Star at Ligonier Valley, 7 p.m.
Marion Center at Portage, 7 p.m.
Berlin Brothersvalley at Somerset, 7 p.m.
Blairsville at United, 7 p.m.
Conemaugh Township at Shade, 7:15 p.m.

Wednesday
None

Thursday
Portage at North Star, 6 p.m. 
United at Central Cambria, 7 p.m.
Shade at HOPEfor Hyndman, 7 p.m. 
Forest Hills at Penn Cambria, 7 p.m. 
Cambria Heights at Somerset, 7 p.m. 

Friday
WestPAC Tournament at North Star
United at Ligonier Valley, 6 p.m. 
Central Cambria at Richland, 7 p.m. 
Bedford at Westmont Hilltop, 7 p.m. 

Saturday
Claysburg-Kimmel at Chestnut Ridge, 5:30 p.m.

Third Period
While there is plenty of action that I’d like to see this week, I’m not sure how much of it I’ll be able to make it to in person. It looks like I’ll miss Tuesday night’s action altogether. I’ll have to check on the start time for the WestPAC Tournament on Friday, but I’m afraid it’s early in the day, which could limit my chances of attending it as well.
I’ll be depending on readers and other media outlets to keep up-to-date on what’s happening.

Chestnut Ridge wins Mount Carmel tournament

Chestnut Ridge won the Mount Carmel tournament on Saturday.
Thanks to Lonnie Buttry for submitting this info.

106 Aaron Burkett 1st
113 Dustin Ickes 3rd
120 Sam shank 2nd
126 Derrick Claar 1st
132 Trent crouse 1st
138 Colby Hillegass 3rd
145 Dustin Bence no place
152 Ben Clark no place
160 Kyle Winegardner 2nd
170 Bradie Bollman 2nd
182 Tyler Dibert 1st
195 Brad Winegardner 2nd
220 Dan Albright 1st
285 Austin Buttry 1st Beat Kriner ranked 6th in State Aus is Ranked 8th by 6-3 decision

Here's a link to a story on the tournament:
http://newsitem.com/sports/tornadoes-2nd-in-zigarski-1.1417078 newspaper link of the story

And, Mr. Buttry even got me a quote from the Lions' Tyler Dibert, who picked up his 100th career win:

"I just wanted to say thanks to all my coaches from elementary to the coaches I have now for pushing me and making me better and to all the practice partners over the years for making me better at practice every day."

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Sheetz Holiday Classic Results

Saturday's results 


Team standings and key: 1. Berlin Brothersvally, BB, 176.5. 2. Huntingdon, HU, 153. 3. Altoona, AL, 150.5. 4. Mount Pleasant, MP, 141.5.5. Forest Hills, FH, 141.5. 6. St. Mary’s, SM, 130. 7. HOPE for Hyndman, HY, 123.5. 8. Canandaigua Academy, CA, 115. 9. Cambria Heights, CH, 113. 10. Ligonier Valley, LV, 109. 11. Penn Cambria, PC, 105. 12. Mercer, MER, 100. 13. Conemaugh Township, CT, 99.5. 14. Richland, RI, 78.5. 15. Hollidaysburg, HOL, 77. 16. Corry, COR, 70. 17. Claysburg-Kimmel, CK, 59. 18. Central Cambria, CC, 57. 19. Portage, PO, 53. 20. Northern Cambria, NC, 20. 21. Greater Johnstown, GJ, 8.



Finals

106-Colin Glorisso, HU, pinned Tanner McCall, FH, 1:28.
113-Triston Law, FH, dec. Damian Huff, HOL, 1-0.
120-Justin Patrick, LV, dec. Josh Brown, CK, 4-2 (SV).
126-Josh Patrick, LV,  maj. dec. Brad Thomas, CH, 10-0.
132-D.J. Hollingshead, AL, pinned Joe Davis, CH, 3:33.
138-Mike Eckenrode, PC, dec.  Rodney Brant, MER, 4-2.
145-T.J. Brandt, AL, maj. dec. Tanner Cahill, CT, 9-0.
152-Taylor Cahill, CT, dec. Levi Niebauer, CH, 5-3.
160-Cody Law, FH, dec. Bryce Fochtman, BB, 13-6.
170-Shane Taubert, COR, dec. Zack Pinkas, FH, 6-4.
182-Justin Overly, MP, dec. Joe McLaughlin, SM, 1-0.
195-Mante Barnes, dec. Eli Holt, MP, 7-2.
220-Jake Bennett, HY, dec. Mitchell Walker, BB, 5-3.
285-Matt Barton, HOL, dec. Austin Rosenberry, AL, 5-1.

Third-Place
106-Ian Ostrowski, CH, dec. Preston Hoover, MER, 4-2.
113-Robby Snyder, HY, dec. Tyler Bodenschatz, RI, 7-5.
120-Joey Swank,BB, dec. Tom Opdenhoff, CC, 6-3.
126-Devon Green, HU, dec. E.J. Custer, BB, 6-5.
132-Chris Miller, BB, dec. Nathan Russell, HU, 7-2.
138-Vinny Romeo,CA, dec. Braden Fochtman, BB, 4-3.
145-Nick Naglic, RI, med. forfeit over Evan Vershay, CA.
152-Alex Feldbauer, SM, pinned Blake Miller, BB,:56.
160-Clay Ruffo, MER, inj. def. over Matt Norris, HU.
170-Markief Knode, AL, dec. Richard Moskey, HY, 8-3.
182-Dominic Shawley, LV, dec. Sean Condon, CA, 5-1.
195-Ryan Morris, COR, pinned Mitchell Lauer, HU, 1:52.
220-Gary Fledderman, SM, dec. Henry Schlosser, PC, 12-5.
285-Aaron Gill, CH, maj. dec. Dylan Emerick, HY, 10-2.

Fifth-Place
106-Ray Dent, SM, pinned Tanner Clites, HY,3:43.
113-Zach Stevens, PC, pinned Tommy DeArmitt, BB, :37.
120-Mike Novak, MP, dec. Matt Wilson, HU, 5-0.
126-Nick Lutz, PO, dec. Josh Gould, FH, 6-3.
132-Nolan Paronish, NC, dec. Dan Croyle, LV, 10-8.
138-Gus Yahner, NC, dec. Casey Berchick, CT, 7-1.
145-Eric Lynn, HOL, dec. Austin Mears, MP, 7-3.
152-Mitch Fisher, CA, dec. Caleb Kephart, PO, 5-2.
160-Evan Haines, MP, pinned Brendan Myers, PC, :59.
170-Nico Pecora, RI, dec. Cody Kephart, PO, 5-2.
182-Joe Frontino, NC, pinned Tyler Elder, CK, 3:58.
195-Stew Trulick, BB, pinned Danny Dillon, CA, 1:26.
220-Austin Lamb, CA, inj. def. over Colton Smith, MER, :01.
285-Tyler Ordiway, CA, dec. Jack Keslar, MP, 2-1.

Seventh-Place
106-Darren Bowser, HOL, pinned Jeff Bryan, 2:20.
113-Jacob Dubbs, HU, pinned Austin King, HU, 1:41.
120-Kody Ofsanko, CT, tech. fall Jake Keiper, FH, 17-0 (3:36).
126-Chris Gibbner, HY, pinned Nathan Hagg, HOL, 3:24.
132-Kyle Vershay, CA, dec. Chase Fox, PO, 4-0.
138-Alex Coudriet, SM, maj. dec. Mike Zabinski, CH, 14-3.
145-Derek Croyle, LV, pinned Aaron Hogue, PC, 4:30.
152-Ethan Charlesworth, MP, maj. dec. Jacob Driskel, PC, 12-0.
160-Travis Yahner, CH, pinned Tyler Clites, HY, 1:34.
170-Josh Cameroni, SM, maj. dec. Austin Slagle, MER, 10-1.
182-Shane Pepper, BB, pinned Charlie Litzinger, PO, 2:47.
195-Christian Keller, SM, med. forfeit over Cameron Strayer, CK.
220-Tim Suydan, COR, dec. Josh Lind, MP, 8-3.
285-Robbie Mills, CT, pinned Joel Hammel, CK, 1:59.

Semifinals
106-Glorisso, HU,  tech. fall Ostrowski, CC, 15-0; McCall, FH) pinned Clites, HY, 1:18.
113-Huff, HOL, maj. dec. Bodenschatz, RI, 16-4; Law, FH, maj. dec. DeArmitt, 11-3.
120-Patrick, LV, dec. Swank, BB, 3-0; Brown, CK, dec. Opdenhoff, CC, 8-3.
126-Patrick, LV, pinned Custer, BB, 3:13; Thomas, CH, dec. Green, HU, 9-8.
132-Hollingshead, AL, pinned Miller, BB, 3:54; Davis, CH, dec. Russell, HU, 7-0.
138-Eckenrode, PC, pinned Romeo, CA, 5:38; Brant, MER, pinned Yahner, NC, 5:11.
145-Brandt, AL, tech. fall Naglic, RI, 17-1; Cahill, CT, pinned Vershay, CA, 3:41.
152-Niebauer, CH, dec. Fisher, CA, 8-3; Cahill, CT, dec. Kephart, PO, 7-3.
160-Law, FH, tech. fall Ruffo, MER,21-6; Fochtman, BB, maj. dec. Norris, HU, 14-2.
170-Pinkas, FH, dec. Knode, AL, 4-3; Taubert, COR, dec. Kephart, PO, 6-4.
182-McLaughlin, SM, maj. dec. Shawley, LV, 13-1; Overly, MP, pinned Condon, CA, 1:32.
195-Barnes, AL, dec. Morris, COR, 5-3; Holt, MP, pinned Dillon, CA, :50.
220-Bennett, HY, pinned Lamb, CA, 1:34; Walker, BB, dec. Smith, MER, 13-11.
285-Rosenberry, AL, dec. Ordiway, CA, 8-2; Barton, HOL, pinned Emerick, HY, 1:50.

Consolation Semifinals
106-Hoover, MER, pinned Clites, HY, 4:20; Ostrowski, CC, pinned Dent, SM, 2:44.
113-Snyder, HY, pinned DeArmitt, BB, 3:39; Bodenschatz, RI, dec. Stevens, PC, 6-0.
120-Opdenhoff, CC, dec. Novak, MP, 5-2; Swank, BB, dec. Wilson, HU, 4-0.
126-Green, HU, maj. dec. Gould, FH, 15-4; Custer, BB, pinned Lutz, PO, 2:20.
132-Russell, HU, dec. Paronish, NC, 2-0 (SV); Miller, BB, pinned Croyle, LV, 1:50.
138- Fochtman, BB, dec. Yahner, NC, 3-2; Romeo, CA, dec. Berchick, CT, 4-1.
145- Vershay, CA, dec. Lynn, HU, 5-3; Naglic, RI, dec. Mears, MP, 5-4.
152- Miller, BB, dec. Kephart, PO, 8-4; Feldbauer, SM, dec. Fisher, CA, 9-3.
160- Norris, HU, pinned Myers, PC, 1:37; Ruffo, MER, pinned Haines, MP, 4:30.
170-Moskey, HY, pinned Kephart, PO, 3:53; Knode, AL, maj. dec. Pecora, RI, 8-0.
182-Condon, CA, pinned Elder, CK, 4:04; Shawley, LV, 1:19.
195-Lauer, CA, pinned Dillon, CA, 1:39; Morris, COR, pinned Trulick, BB, 1:16.
220-Fledderman, SM, dec. Smith, 14-7; Schlosser, PC, dec. Lamb, CA, 4-1.
285-Emerick, HY, pinned Keslar, MP, 2:20; Gill, CH, pinned Ordiway, CA, 2:07.

Friday Night Recap 12-14-12


I wasn’t able to make it to any tournaments on Friday night, but there was plenty of action involving local teams.

Sheetz Holiday Classic (at Penn Cambria)
This has the most local teams involved. I took a look at the tournament yesterday, and that link includes the tentative schedule for today’s action.
I don’t have much information on the results from Penn Cambria, mostly just updates that I got via text and phone calls from my Berlin connections. The Mountaineers had good reason to want to talk about their performance. The top returning team (defending champ Hempfield is not in the tournament this year), Berlin leads the team standings with 91.5 points. Canandaigua Academy, a New York school, is second with 81 points.
Here are the complete team standings from Day 1:

1. Berlin Brothersvalley    91.5
2. Canandaigua Academy 81
3. Huntingdon Area         77
4. Altoona                      75
5. Forest Hills                 69
6. Mount Pleasant           64.5
7. Ligonier Valley            57
8. HOPE for Hyndman     56.5
9. Cambria Heights          56
10. St. Mary’s                56
11. Richland                   55.5
12. Mercer                     53
13. Conemaugh Twp.      52
14. Penn Cambria            50
15. Central Cambria         43
16. Corry                       39
17. Hollidaysburg            38
18. Claysburg-Kimmel     35
19. Portage Area             34
20. Northern Cambria      21
21. Greater Johnstown      8

I didn’t hear of any major upsets yesterday. I plan to be there for the semifinals, which begin at 11 this morning.
Berlin has six semifinalists, which I would guess is the most of any team, but I don’t know that for sure. What I do know is the Mountaineers will be hard-pressed to end up with more than one finalist. I believe they only have one wrestler seeded in the top two (Bryce Fochtman at 160), so it’s not altogether unexpected. They face some very difficult semifinal matches, including dates with Triston Law (Forest Hills), Justin and Josh Patrick (Ligonier Valley) and D.J. Hollingshead (Altoona).
As far as the other teams go, Forest Hills should have the seeds to put three into the finals (Triston Law, Cody Law and Zach Pinkas). I don’t know much about Canandaigua, but Tom Elling’s Pennsylvania WrestlingHandbook shows just three returning wrestlers, led by 38-match winner Vinny Romeo, who eked out a 5-4 victory over Berlin freshman Braden Fochtman on Friday.
I don’t know what Huntingdon has, but I would think Altoona has the potential for at least three finalists. Hollingshead and Brandt are high seeds. I haven’t heard anything about returning champ Mante Barnes, but I’m assuming he’s in the mix.
Disclaimer: I really hate how any assumptions I’m making in this post. Without having seen the brackets or any of the wrestling, I could be off on some of this (such as if Barnes is even in the tournament). As a journalist, this goes against everything I believe in, but I am trying to give as complete a picture of the tournament as I can. If I am wrong, I apologize and will update the blog as soon as I can.

King of the Mountain
Bedford is at the prestigious King of the Mountain tournament. PA Power Wrestling has a recap of it (as well as the Reno Tournament of Champions). The Altoona Mirror has a short update on how Bedford’s wrestlers fared at Central Mountain. See the complete brackets here. The Bisons have Jon Gabriel (106) and Ryan Easter (120) in the quarterfinals.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Previewing the Sheetz Holiday Classic (Penn Cambria tournament)

The Sheetz Holiday Classic begins this afternoon at Penn Cambria. A quick glance at the 21-team tournament:

Familiar faces: Altoona, Berlin Brothersvalley, Cambria Heights, Central Cambria, Conemaugh Township, Corry, Forest Hills, Greater Johnstown, Hollidaysburg, Huntingdon, Ligonier Valley, Mount Pleasant, Northern Cambria, Penn Cambria, Portage and St. Mary's

Who's in:  Canandaigua Academy (N.Y.),  Claysburg-Kimmel,  HOPE for Hyndman, Mercer and Richland.

Who's out: Hempfield, Penns Valley, Trinity (District 3).

Returning champions: Justin Patrick, Ligonier Valley (106); T.J. Brandt, Altoona, (126), Cody Law, Forest Hills (160), Mante Barnes, Altoona, (195) and Matt Barton, Hollidaysburg (295).

Tentative schedule: 
Friday
5 p.m. Pigtails
5:45 p.m. Preliminaries/1st round consolations
8:15 p.m. Quarterfinals/2nd round consolations.
Saturday
9 a.m. 3rd round consolations
11 a.m. Semifinals/4th round consolations
2 p.m. Consolation semifinals
4 p.m. 3rd, 5th, 7th place matches
6 p.m. Parade of champions
6:30 p.m. Finals

Thursday night recap 12-13-12



There were some intriguing duals on Thursday night. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to see any firsthand, but here's what happened and what I thought about it.

Westmont Hilltop 37, Somerset 30
285–Christian Roman, WH, forfeit.
106-Drake Dorian, WH, forfeit.
113-Dan Yost, WH, dec. Garret Foster, 5-3.
120-Logan Blackburn, WH, pinned Katherine Luteri, :47.
126-Steven Zipf, WH, maj. dec. Tyler Walker, 11-3.
132-Sheldon Wagner, S, dec. Nick Mical, 9-4.
138-Jon Fabian, S, dec. Mark Barbera, 6-0.
145-Mike Walsh, WH, forfeit.
152-Daniel Talley, S, pinned Seth Ray, 1:01.
160-Mike Laue, S, dec. Riley Schropp, 6-4 (SV).
170-Landon Lohr, S, pinned Cameron Rock, :39.
182-Logan Eller, S, dec. Colin Barron, 6-4 (SV).
195-Jacob Nickelson, S, pinned Jake Buck, :26.
220-Don Shovestull, WH, forfeit.
Records: Westmont Hilltop 1-0; Somerset 0-2.

Note - there were errors in the original box posted here, which listed no matches at 160 and 182. Thanks to the alert reader who posted about this, they have now been corrected, as has the analysis.

Analysis: A good win for Westmont and a disastrous start for Somerset. After going 18-4 last season, the Golden Eagles are likely staring at an 0-4 start, with duals against Berlin Brothersvalley and Cambria Heights before the Christmas break.
There weren't many highlight matches here, as two of Westmont's top wrestlers – Mike Walsh and Don Shovestull – received forfeits. Westmont freshman Dan Yost posted a big win for the Hilltoppers early, beating Garret Foster, who won 17 matches last year, at 113.
Steven Zipf's major decision of Tyler Walker also was a bonus-point boost, while Nick Mical's ability to avoid a major decision at the hands of Sheldon Wagner benefited the Hilltoppers.
Somerset eked out victories at 160 and 182. Returning 27-match winner and regional qualifier Mike Laue bumped up two weight classes from his normal spot to beat Riley Schropp at 160 in overtime. Logan Eller also needed extra time for a 6-4 win over colin Barron at 182.


Chestnut Ridge 60, North Star 11
285-Austin Buttry, CR, pinned Levi Albright, 2:59.
106-Aaron Burkett, CR, tech. fall Lenny Beeman, 16-1 (6:00).
113-Dustin Ickes, CR, forfeit.
120-Sam Shank, CR, forfeit.
126-Derrick Claar, CR, dec. Tayte Mostoller, 4-3.
132-Trent Crouse, CR, dec. Shawn Costas, 8-3.
138-Tevin Mostoller, NS, tech. fall Colby Hilegass, 15-0 (5:58).
145-Dustin Bence, CR, pinned Luke Lepley, 4:58.
152-Corey Fritch, NS, pinned Ben Clark, 4:56.
160-Kyle Winegardner, CR, dec. Austin Connor, 2-1.
170-Brady Bollman, CR, pinned Joey Berkebile, :30.
182-Tyler Dibert, CR, pinned Thomas Miller, 1:41.
195-Brad Winegardner, CR, maj. dec. Hunter Connor, 12-1.
220-Dan Albright, CR, pinned Kevin Horner, 2:44.
Records: Chestnut Ridge 1-0; North Star 0-1.

Analysis: This was even more lopsided than I thought it would be. In their first time out of the gate, the Chestnut Ridge Lions lived up to their billing. The Lions won 10 of the 12 contested matches and picked up a pair of forfeits.
The highlight looks like Derrick Claar's 4-3 victory over Tayte Mostoller at 126. Claar, who won 33 matches and the District 5 title at 106 last year, edged Mostoller, who won 17 matches last year, but has plenty of talent. The 138-pound match also interests me, as Trent Crouse beat Shawn Costas 8-3. Crouse had some huge wins last year, so it impressed me for the North Star sophomore to keep it a 5-point match.
The real shocker was at 145, where Dustin Bence – who was 5-23 last year – pinned Luke Lepley, a 21-match winner.
Kyle Winegardner's 2-1 decision over Austin Connor in a matchup of wrestlers who won at least 20 matches last year also looks like it was a good one.

Blairsville 52, Forest Hills 30
220-Luke White, B, pinned Jarret Beland, :34.
285-Brandon Kunkleman, B, pinned Matt Marra, 3:07.
106-Tanner McCall, FH, pinned Hunter Cunningham, 1:39.
113-Triston Law, FH, pinned Judah Napolitano, :29.
120-Luke Keiper, FH, forfeit.
126-Luke Mowery, B, pinned Josh Gould, 1:37.
132-Nick Pecze, B, maj. dec. Ean Bopp 8-0.
138-Noah Tarr, B, pinned Travis Templeton, 4:26.
145-Lucas Palmer, B, pinned Kris Knotts, 3:21.
152-Andrew Doak, B, pinned Ian Shugars, :55.
160-Cody Law, FH, pinned Ben Stivison, 2:54.
170-Zack Pinkas, FH, pinned Bobby Thompson, 5:11.
182-Alex Tripodas, B, forfeit.
195-Tyler Jasper, B, pinned Billy Kovalcik, 4:47.
Records: Blairsville 5-0; Forest Hills 1-1.

Analysis: Blairsville should be one of the best teams in District 6, so this isn't a bad result for Forest Hills. The Rangers actually won the highlight match of the night, as Zack Pinkas pinned Bobby Thompson at 170 pounds. Thompson was a 23-match winner a year ago and pinned Pinkas in the fifth-place match in District 6.
Thompson's younger brother, Scott, didn't wrestle. I'm not sure why, although I'm guessing one of my regular readers can fill me in on this. Scott Thompson placed sixth in the state as a freshman last year.
His fellow stud sophomore from Blairsville, Andrew Doak, had no problems in picking up a first-period pin.
Forest Hills' Law brothers – Triston and Cody – each picked up pins.


Cambria Heights 45, Penn Cambria 29
106-Mark Zabinski, CH, forfeit.
113-Zach Stevens, PC, maj. dec. Michael Dautlick, 15-3.
120-Ryan Biter, PC, pinned Chris Poutrain, 1:52.
126-Brad Thomas, CH, pinned Austin Farabaugh, 3:24.
132-Joe Davis, CH, dec. Dominic Farabaugh, 9-2.
138-Mike Eckenrode, PC, dec. Mike Zabinski, 9-3.
145-Austin Gill, CH, pinned Aaron Hogue, 3:05.
152-Levi Niebauer, CH, pinned Jake Hurley, 2:10.
160-Jacob Driscoll, PC, maj. dec. Travis Yahner, 10-2.
170-Dalton Waksmunski, CH, pinned Brendan Myers, :51.
182-Matt Wyland, PC, pinned William Hoover, 1:49.
195-Tyler Crawford, CH, pinned Matt Smith, :13.
220-Henry Schlosser, PC, pinned Tony Novello, 2:58.
285-Aaron Gill, CH, forfeit.
Records: Cambria Heights 1-0; Penn Cambria 1-1.

Analysis: Despite the 16-point loss, this shows that Penn Cambria looks be much improved over last year. Cambria Heights is probably the best team in Cambria County, so this isn't a bad result for Todd Niebauer's squad, especially considering the Panthers gave up two forfeits.

These results can get a bit confusing, as Mike Eckenrode wrestles for Todd and Matt Niebauer at Penn Cambria while Levi and Ray Niebauer wrestle for Mike Eckenrode at Cambria Heights. Got that?
There were only two decisions in this bonus-point-fest. Joe Davis, a 27-match winner and District 6 runner-up a year ago, was only able to muster a 9-2 decision over Penn Cambria sophomore Dominic Farabaugh. Mike Eckenrode (the Penn Cambria wrestler, not the Cambria Heights coach) beat Mike Zabinski by a nearly identical score at 138.


Thursday, December 13, 2012

Wednesday night recap 12-12-12


Not much action on Wednesday. The Berlin-Conemaugh Township looked to be a good early season matchup but quickly turned into a rout. Ligonier Valley’s match at Shade didn’t offer much.


Berlin Brothersvalley 55, Conemaugh Township 6
220-Anthony Collins, BB, dec. Zach Svencer, 2-1.
285-Mitchell Walker, BB, pinned Robbie Mills, 3:17.
106-Emil Kiesnowski, BB, forfeit.
113-Tommy DeArmitt, BB, pinned Aaron Griffith, 3:59.
120-Joey Swank, BB, dec. Kody Ofsanko, 2-0.
126-E.J. Custer, BB, forfeit.
132-Chris Miller, BB, maj. dec. Matt Bridge, 13-3.
138-Braden Fochtman, BB, dec. Casey Berchick, 9-3.
145-Tanner Cahill, CT, dec. Eric Darr, 7-1.
152-Taylor Cahill, CT, dec. Blake Miller, BB, 8-5.
160-Bryce Fochtman, BB, dec. Ryan Grosik, 8-5.
170-Trevor Moore, BB, dec. Ryan Shifflett, 5-4.
182-Shane Pepper, BB, forfeit.
195-Stew Trulick, BB, forfeit.
Records: Berlin Brothersvalley 1-0; Conemaugh Township 0-1.

Analysis: I covered this one for The Tribune-Democrat. You can read the story here.
I had hoped this would be one of the better matches of the young season, but a Conemaugh Township team at less than full strength was no match for an improved Berlin squad. My story talks at length about the highlight matches won by Berlin freshmen Joey Swank and Braden Fochtman, so I won’t rehash that here.
One of the other noticeable differences for Berlin was in 220-pounder/heavyweight Mitchell Walker. The senior was just 6-4 last season, though that record doesn’t tell the whole story. He had a win over Chestnut Ridge’s Austin Buttry and three of his four losses – to Somerset’s Jake Hayman, Penn Cambria’s Seth McLendon and Kiski Area’s Shane Kuhn – were against quality competition. He took the lead against Kuhn, who won the WPIAL title and a fourth-place medal in Class AAA, before getting pinned in the opening minute after suffering a concussion. That injury, suffered on Jan. 7, wiped out the remainder of this season.
Berlin's Mitchell Walker works to turn Conemaugh
Township's Robbie Mills on Wednesday night.
“Mitchell Walker is a poster child for working hard,” Berlin coach Jason Cornell said. “He’s always been one of the hardest workers we’ve ever had in the room.”
Walker obviously has put plenty of time in the weight room. His physique looks much better than last season, and even reminds me a bit of Hayman.
Walker faced a much bigger Robbie Mills on Wednesday night and pushed the action throughout before getting a second-period pin.
“He’s definitely coming back with a lot to work for this season,” Cornell said. “We expect a lot out of him and he definitely looks good.”
Conemaugh Township coach Jarod Feathers couldn’t say that many of his guys looked good on Wednesday night. Perhaps the most impressive was Ryan Grosik in his 8-5 loss to Bryce Fochtman at 160 pounds. Grosik’s length and funky style troubled Fochtman all night. The Conemaugh Township senior actually caught Fochtman on his back in the opening period. If he had gotten the pair of backpoints I thought he deserved, the match would have been even more interesting.
Brothers Tanner and Taylor Cahill picked up the Indians’ only victories, but they weren’t dominant by any means. Tanner beat Eric Darr 7-1 at 145. The defending District 5 champ never looked in danger of losing the match, but he also couldn’t break it open or put Darr on his back. Taylor Cahill seemed a bit cautious with Blake Miller in an 8-5 victory, though with good reason. Miller has a unique style that seems to make him most dangerous when he’s on his back (or at the very least in the bottom position) so the decision to stay on his feet for most of the match benefited the younger Cahill.

Ligonier Valley 66, Shade 9
106-Gordon Matson, LV, pinned BlakeSheehan, :26.
113-No match.
120-Justin Patrick, LV, forfeit.
126-Josh Patrick, LV, forfeit.
132-Daniel Croyle, LV, med. def. over Mike Manges, 1:01.
138-Joseph Neiderhiser, LV, forfeit.
145-Nickolas Stahl, LV, forfeit.
152-Tyler Smith, LV, pinned Matthew Naylor,1:09.
160-Derek Croyle, LV, forfeit.
170-Justin Bellas, LV, forfeit.
182-Dominick Shawley, LV, forfeit.
195-Jason Havyer, S, pinned Jeremy Withrow,3:25.
220-Raymond Marsh, LV, pinned Cody Edwards,1:41.
285-Trevor Brown, S, dec. Kyler Kruel, 3-0.
Analysis: I haven’t heard anything about Shade so far this season and, from the looks of this, I can see why. How disappointing for the Panthers program, which had made great strides two to three years ago, to have fallen so far.
To put this one in context: The bus trip from Ligonier Valley to Shade takes about an hour; the dual meet itself consisted of 13 minutes, 47 seconds of wrestling action.
Shade only had six wrestlers take the mat on Wednesday night. To their credit, the Panthers did win two of the six matches. Shade’s top returning wrestler, Mike Manges, lost by medical default, so the night could be even more painful. I don’t know what happened to Manges or what his status for the future is. I also don’t know what the status is of Phil Aikey, who went 12-5 as a sophomore last season.
I expect Ligonier Valley to be stronger this season, with some talented youngsters joining a core that already includes the Patrick brothers and the Croyles. Unfortunately, this dual won’t give us any kind of real gauge as to how much improvement the Rams have made.



Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Tuesday night recap 12-11-12

Here are results from Tuesday night's matches, along with some analysis:

Bedford 62, Somerset 15
  152 - Tanner Williams, B, pinned Daniel Talley, 3:26.
  160 - Landon Lohr, S, pinned Niklas Wendt, 0:55.
  170 - Caleb Grimes, B, won by forfeit.
  182 - Michael Brett, B, pinned Logan Eller, 1:01.
  195 - Jacob Nickelson, S, pinned Robert Minnich, 1:01.
  220 - Chance Williams, B, won by forfeit.
  285 - Nate Shoemaker, B, won by forfeit.
  106 - Jonathan Gabriel, B, won by forfeit.
  113 - Jake Warren, B, pinned Garret Foster, 3:47.
  120 - Kyle Mehle, B, pinned Tyler Walker, 2:52.
  126 - Ryan Easter, B, tech. fall Sheldon Wagner, 19-2, 5:22.
  132 - Garrett Thomas, B, pinned Bailey Phillips, 0:47.
  138 - Toby Brett, B, dec. Jon Fabian, 3-1.
  145 - Mike Laue, S, dec. Kenny Collins, 2-1. 
Records: Bedford 1-0; Somerset 0-1.

Analysis: I was planning to go to this match, but something came up at work and I didn’t get out of the office in time to make the drive to Bedford. In hindsight, I’m glad I didn’t.
I didn’t expect this to be a close match, but without breaking down matchups, I would have guessed a 20- or 30-point differential, not 47 points. I knew that Somerset wouldn’t be as good as last year. Not only did they lose a talented senior class, but the Golden Eagles also lost their best wrestler in Michael Sutton, whose family moved to the Erie area. He’ll be wrestling for General McLane this year.
I also didn’t know that the Golden Eagles would give up four forfeits. That’s not just 24 points, but they were given up to some of the weaker spots in the Bisons’ lineup. Without only having seen the Bedford roster and not their actual weights, it looks like the upper weights could be a real problem for coach Brian Creps. He doesn’t list any 182, 195 or 220-pounders on his roster. Obviously the Bedford coaching staff is too smart to give up forfeits in those spots most matches and will find ways to get the best matchups possible in them, but they could often be using undersized guys to plug holes.
In this one, that wasn’t a problem, as they got a forfeit at 170, used one of their better guys at 182 in Michael Brett, then added forfeits at 220 and 285. They gave up six points to Jacob Nickelson at 195, but would gladly trade that for the 24 they got in the upper weights.
The other reason I wanted to attend the match was to see Jonathan Gabriel in person. Again, I didn’t miss out on anything, as the talented Bedford freshman got a forfeit at 106 pounds. I expect him to be the top freshman in the area this season.
Jake Warren pinning Garret Foster at 113 intrigues me, and it does look like there were a couple of good matches at the very end of the night. Toby Brett’s 3-1 decision over Jon Fabian would have to qualify as the highlight of the night, but the outcome that interests me the most is Mike Laue’s 2-1 victory over Kenny Collins at 145. I don’t know anything about Collins, but such a tight match with a quality wrestler like Laue tells me that I might find out more about him rather quickly.
Ryan Spring of the Bedford Gazette did tell me that Somerset’s Damian Jano was out with an injury.
The Daily American has a story on the match here.

Meyersdale 56, Portage 18
220-Cameron Neel, P, forfeit
285-Justin Dunmeyer, M, forfeit
106-Trevor Thomas, M, forfeit
113-Billy Charlton, M, forfeit
120-Brady McKenzie, M, pinned Brady Ratosky, :51
126-Collin Day, M, maj. dec. Nick Lutz, 14-2
132-Tanner Hetrick, M, dec. Chase Fox, 5-4
138-Hunter Lantz, M, forfeit
145-David Stanton, M, forfeit
152-Seth Deist, M, maj. dec. Caleb Kephart, 18-10
160-Austin Imler, M, pinned Frank Fordick, 1:12
170-Cody Kephart, P, pinned Blake Hoover, 2:25
182-Gavin Berkley, M, dec. Paul Husar, 4-0 
195-Charlie Litzinger, P, by forfeit
Records: Meyersdale 1-0; Portage 0-4.

Analysis: Not too much to write home about here, as half of the matches were forfeit. Four of those went in favor of Meyersdale. The Red Raiders also won six of the seven contested matches.
The highlight of the night looks like the 132-pound bout, where Tanner Hetrick (35-7 last year) edged Chase Fox (17-9). The other good matchup was at 182, as Gavin Berkley beat Paul Husar 4-0.

The Daily American has a brief on the match here.


Forest Hills 52, Johnstown 24
152-Ian Shugars, FH, pinned Will Gomez, 2:39.
160-Cody Law, FH, maj. dec. Jesaiah Wilson, 12-3.
170-Richard White, J, pinned Jacob Colbert, :44.
182-Zach Pinkas, FH, pinned Bailey Piscatello, :36.
195-Nate Litvin, J, pinned Billy Kovalcik, 3:03.
220-Jarrett Bowen, FH, forfeit.
285-Noah Eckenrode, J, forfeit.
106-Tanner McCall, FH, forfeit.
113-Tristan Law, FH, forfeit.
120-Jake Keiper, FH, forfeit.
126-Josh Gould, FH, forfeit.
132-No match.
138-Rodney Hall, J, forfeit.
145-Chris Knotts, FH, forfeit.
Records: Forest Hills 1-0, Johnstown 0-1

Analysis: I didn't have a chance to look at the projected lineups for these squads prior to the match, but seeing the box score, it's a big disappointment to see that only five matches were contested. Nine consecutive bouts were either a forfeit or, in the case of 132 pounds, no match. That's a shame.
Johnstown seemed like it had been making real strides last season, and from the PJW results, I know they have some talented younger wrestlers. But for the Trojans to have six weight classes where they couldn't send out a wrestler is disappointing.
As far as the results go, there's not much to pick from. The biggest thing that jumps out at me is that Cody Law only beat Jesaiah Wilson 12-3. That's not meant as a criticism of Wilson, who went 13-15 last year. It's simply a testament of how much is expected out of Law. He was a scoring machine last year, when he finished second in the state, and has already committed to wrestle for Cael Sanderson at Penn State. There will be a lot more pressure on Law this year and most of us will expect him to score five or six points in almost every dual. When he doesn't, it will raise a few eyebrows, as this one surely will.


Penn Cambria 43, Central Cambria 34

170-Myers, PC, pinned Bowser, 1:27.
182-Wyland, PC, pinned Crow, 1:27.
195-Croft, CC, pinned Smith, :37.
220-Schlosser, PC, pinned Rickard, 2:33.
285-Branick, CC, forfeit.
106-Ostrowski, CC, forfeit.
113-Stevens, PC, pinned Lazaration, :49.
120-Opdenhoff, CC, pinned Biter, :48.
126-Taylor, CC, maj. dec. Japp, 14-0.
132-A. Farabaugh, PC, pinned Makin, 3:25.
138-D. Farabaugh, PC, maj. dec. Bednar, 9-1.
145-Bilonick, CC, pinned Eckenrode, 5:23.
152-Hogue, PC, pinned Karlinsey 1:59.
160-Driskel, PC, dec. Kline, 6-1.
Record: Central Cambria 3-4.

Analysis: I don't know too much about either of these teams, but the first thing that I noticed is that there is no Link in Penn Cambria's lineup. The family that has produced three standouts for Penn Cambria and Pitt-Johnstown has a fourth talented wrestler who was too small to wrestle 106 last season as a freshman. I expected him to have put on some weight and be in the lineup this season, but apparently he's still only 92 pounds and won't be on the team. Penn Cambria forfeited 106 in this match as well as 285, where the Panthers were without Seth McLendon, who won 29 matches and was a regional qualifier last season. I was told that McLendon will be out until January, so Penn Cambria will have to make do without him for now.
Penn Cambria coach Todd Niebauer bumped his wrestlers up and it worked out, for the most part, but there was one hiccup. Michael Eckenrode was leading Tanner Bilonick 10-1 in the third period when he got caught and pinned.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Better late than never?

The season is only a few days old, but I'm already behind. I hoped to have the season previews ready by this time, but haven't been able to get all of the info, as I was out of the area for the past 10 days.
Working on tracking down lineups for all teams and hoping to take a look at last weekend's results as soon as possible.
As I said before, it's going to be very tough to keep the blog updated this year, but I will do my best. Please be patient.

Monday, December 3, 2012

The best resource for Pennsylvania wrestling

It's not wrestling season until I get a copy of Tom Elling's Pennsylvania Wrestling Handbook.
Luckily, I was able to pick up a copy of it last week, thanks to Rich Vetock, who literally and figuratively went the extra mile for me.
If you have never picked up a copy of the book, you're really missing out. You can order one here. I've gotten a new one each season for years and can't imagine covering the sport without it. I carry it with me to virtually every match and use it all of the time.
It's a great resource, both for the new season and the history of the sport. Although it's labeled "Pennsylvania Wrestling Handbook" it does offer info on wrestlers from neighboring states as well.
If you are a fan - and I assume you are if you're reading this blog - pick up a copy of the book. It's well worth it.