2013 PIAA Individual Wrestling Championships Recap – Day Two

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Saturday, March 9, 2013 | 11:18 AM


Day 1 of the PIAA tournament could not have went better for the AAA WPIAL wrestlers, with 38 of 42 wrestlers staying alive. The success continued into Day 2, with 31 of 42 wrestlers continuing their wrestling season and guaranteeing themselves a spot on the medal stand Saturday night.

Most of the success continued in the winners bracket, where 23 WPIAL wrestlers moved in the semi-finals, which are scheduled to start 9:00 AM Saturday. In two weight classes the WPIAL stayed perfect, with all 3 qualifiers advancing. One was at 120 pounds, where Sam Krivus of Hempfield, Vincenzo Joseph of Pittsburgh Central Catholic, and Dalton Macri of Canon McMillan all advanced. Joseph and Macri will wrestle in one semi-final in a rematch of last weeks WPIAL semi-finals, where Joseph beat Macri 10-2. The other weight class with 3 WPIAL qualifiers in the semi-finals is at 126 pounds, with Conner Schram of Canon McMillan, Michael Kemerer of Franklin Regional, and Tyler Walker of North Hills. Kemerer and Walker will wrestle in one semi-final, which is also a WPIAL semi-final rematch where Kemerer beat Walker 5-4.

Six weight classes feature a pair of WPIAL wrestlers in the semi-finals but they are all on opposite sides of the bracket. The weight classes with 2 WPIAL wrestlers include: 132 (Tyler Smith, Franklin Regional and Ethan Kenney of Connellsville), 145 (Solomon Chishko, Canon McMillan and Josh Shields, Franklin Regional), 152 (Heath Coles, Norwin and Tyler Reinhart, Greensburg Salem), 160 (Zack Zavatsky, Latrobe and Zach Voytek, Greensburg Salem), 170 (Cody Wiercioch, Canon McMillan and Noah Wilps, Chartiers Valley), and 195 (Jacob Hart, Hampton and Matt McCutcheon, Kiski Area).

Others in the semi-finals are Luke Pletcher of Latrobe (106), A.C. Headlee of Waynesburg (113), Josh Maruca of Franklin Regional (138), Zach DeLuca of Pittsburgh Central Catholic (220), and Shane Kuhn of Kiski Area (285).

After Day 2 the team standings in the PIAA AAA tournament looks much like the way the dual standings ended, with Canon McMillan (40 points) at the top, District 3 Central Dauphin (36 points) at number two, and Franklin Regional (33.5 points) at number three. Other WPIAL teams in the top 10 include Kiski Area (8th with 18 points) and Latrobe (10th with 17.5 points).

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After the second day of wrestling at the 2013 Pennsylvania state championships, at least one thing is certain. The WPIAL will certainly have two Class AA state wrestling champions. And, as many as four athletes may stand atop the podium on Saturday afternoon. Six District 7 wrestlers won quarterfinal and semifinal bouts on Friday, advancing to the championship finals at the PIAA Class AA Individual Wrestling Championships at the GIANT Center in Hershey, Pennsylvania.

Saturday’s Class AA finals are scheduled to begin at 2:00pm. The championship bouts, along with consolation matches for 7th, 5th, and 3rd places, will be wrestled on four mats simultaneously for each weight class.

Be sure to stay tuned to MSA for at least 13 hours of LIVE mat-to-mat action from Hershey from 9:00am until 10:00pm on Saturday.

The 113-pound title bout will feature two WPIAL wrestlers. South Fayette senior Seth Carr will face Derry’s freshman phenom George Phillipi. Look for a closely contested bout as Carr dropped a 1-0 decision to Phillipi two weeks ago at the WPIAL Class AA Championships at Chartiers Valley High School.

The 132-pound final will also be a battle of WPIAL wrestlers as Kittanning’s Jason Nolf will wrestle Keystone Oak’s Nick Zanetta for the third consecutive weekend. Nolf beat Zanetta in the WPIAL Class AA final, 3-0, two weeks ago and also narrowly defeated the Eagle’s senior, 8-6, last Saturday at the Southwest Regional tournament in Johnstown. The Wildcats’ junior will be looking to win his second state title in three years. Zanetta, a University of Pittsburgh recruit, will aim to improve on his state runner-up performance of last season.

Burrell’s Dakota DesLauriers’ (182) and Chartiers-Houston’s Garrett Vulcano (195) will also represent the WPIAL in gold medal bouts. The WPIAL’s AA big men will take on Muncy’s Troy Hembury (42-1 at 182) and Milton’s Ryan Solomon (39-0 at 195), respectively. Both wrestlers are Northeast Regional champions and Solomon, a senior who will join Zanetta at Pitt next season, is a defending state champion.

The 170-pound third place consolation bout will be another All-WPIAL match-up as Jefferson-Morgan’s Dustin Conti will attempt to defeat South Fayette’s Mike Fetchet for the third straight weekend. Conti edged Fetchet for both the WPIAL and Southwest Regional crowns. Also wrestling for bronze medal honors will be Nate Reckner, South Side (120), John Demaske, Jefferson-Morgan (126), Phil Marra, Burrell (145), and Jake Temple, Avella (220).

A fifth place consolation bout involving another pair of WPIAL wrestlers will be Charleroi’s Nick Gavazzi against Burrell’s Steve Edwards at 138 pounds. Other wrestlers competing for a fifth place finish are Southmoreland’s Austin Griffiths (106), Freedom’s Boe Bonzo (152), Valley’s Terrell Fields (182), Kittanning’s Zac Croyle (195), and West Greene’s Cody Jacobs (220).

Seventh place contestants from the WPIAL include Jake Rothka, (Bentworth, 113), Jake Wentzel, (South Park, 132), and Jared Walker, (South Fayette, 160).

Impressively, only three of 25 wrestlers from the WPIAL were eliminated during the second day of competition. In all, 22 of the 34 total WPIAL Class AA wrestlers who competed at Hershey earned All-State honors.

Defending state champ Bethlehem Catholic continues to lead the team standings with 86.5 points. Benton is second with 64. Burrell has scored 40.5 points and trails third place Saegertown by just one-half point. South Fayette is in sixth place with 36 points.

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