Twenty WPIAL wrestlers advance to PIAA Class AAA semifinals

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Friday, March 9, 2018 | 6:39 PM


HERSHEY — The WPIAL proved again why it is one of the toughest wrestling regions in the state.

Twenty wrestlers advanced to Saturday's semifinals at the PIAA Class AAA championships at the Giant Center, including three — Hopewell junior Jacob Ealy, West Allegheny junior Ty McGeary and Mt. Lebanon sophomore Luke Stout — who placed fourth at the WPIAL tournament and PIAA Southwest Regional last week.

District 3 (Harrisburg area) was second with 11 in the semis and District 1 (Philadelphia area) was third with seven. District 11 was tied for fourth with District 6 with five.

The semifinals begin at 9 a.m. and every semifinalist is guaranteed a spot on the podium.

Heading that list is returning champion Sam Hillegas of North Hills, who won the 113-pound title in 2017. Hillegas is the top seed at 126.

There are three semifinal matches that will pit WPIAL wrestlers:

At 126 pounds, Hillegas faces Ealy; at 160, Stout faces Belle Vernon senior Zach Hartman; and at 182, Thomas Jefferson junior Max Shaw battles Albert Gallatin senior Tim Wallace.

The others to advance were Norwin sophomore Kurtis Phipps and Seneca Valley freshman Alejandro Herrera-Rondon at 106; Shaler junior Ryan Sullivan and Hempfield junior Kyle Burkholder at 113; Canon-McMillan senior Logan Macri at 120; Hillegas and Latrobe sophomore Gabe Willochell at 126; Franklin Regional junior Colton Camacho at 132; Kiski Area senior Noah Levett at 138; McGeary at 152; Canon-McMillan sophomore Gerrit Nijenhuis, Stout and Hartman at 160; Belle Vernon junior Scott Joll at 170; Wallace and Shaw at 182; Connellsville senior Nate Ansell at 195; Laurel Highlands senior Ian Edenfield at 220; and Kiski Area senior heavyweight Isaac Reid.

The WPIAL will return home with 33 placewinners.

Paul Schofield is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at pschofield@tribweb.com or via Twitter @Schofield_Trib.

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