Burrell Wins Record 11th Straight WPIAL AA Wrestling Crown
By: Likitha Janga
Saturday, February 4, 2017 | 6:20 PM
Every year begins the same way in AA WPIAL wrestling, with fans asking one question, who will end Burrell’s reign? And for the 11th year in a row, the answer remains the same, no one.
Burrell came in to Saturday with an intensity that was clearly unmatched, and they dominated from start to finish en route to their 13th overall WPIAL crown. It started with their semi-final win over Derry, where after losing the first match by fall, rattled off 11 straight wins to knock off the Trojans 44-18. They advanced to the finals, where they would meet Freedom for the second straight season. The Bulldogs were coming off a 38-30 win over South Fayette, avenging an earlier 40-28 loss from the South Side Duals.
The match started at 106 pounds, which was the perfect spot for Burrell to jump out to an early lead on Freedom. Outside of an 8-4 decision for ZJ Ward of Freedom over Bryan Gaul at 113, Burrell was able to jump out to a commanding 24-3 lead. That was thanks to four falls from Trent Valovchik, Trent Bechtold, Dillon Jeffrey, and Ethan Awes.
Freedom would tighten the match up, with the Komara brothers (Chase and Kody) getting back to back wins to make the score 24-12 at the halfway point. But then Burrell would respond right back, as Corey Christie picked up a technical fall and Shaun Gates added a forfeit to widen the lead to 23, 35-12. After an exciting match at 170 pounds, where Dean Ward of Freedom overcame a pair of deficits to defeat Austin Mele in double overtime, Burrell senior Anthony Marra was called on to put the match away. And he did. Marra took Bryson Miller of Freedom to overtime before securing the match winning takedown to take a 4-2 victory. This gave Burrell a 38-15 lead with three bouts to go, securing the Bucs of their 11th straight WPIAL Championship. Burrell would go on to win the match 44-27 over Freedom.
To hear from Burrell seniors Dillon Jeffrey and Anthony Marra, check our Youtube page to see Center Stage interviews. For a full recap of the AA WPIAL team tournament, listen in to Inside the WPIAL Wrestling Circle, Monday night at 7:00 PM. Burrell head coach Josh Shields will be a special guest on the show.
Burrell Buccaneers 44 – Freedom Bulldogs 27
106 – Trent Valovchik (B) fall Thomas Young (F) 4:59 – 6-0 Burrell
113 – ZJ Ward (F) dec. Bryan Gaul (B) 8-4 – 6-3 Burrell
120 – Trent Bechtold (B) fall Austin Alberts (F) 2:22 – 12-3 Burrell
126 – Dillan Jeffrey (B) fall Gordon Kalamasz (F) 3:00 – 18-3 Burrell
132 – Ethan Awes (B) fall Jake Pail (F) 3:14 – 24-3 Burrell
138 – Chase Komara (F) dec. Daniel McCarthy (B) 8-2 – 24-6 Burrell
145 – Kody Komara (F) fall Sean Stuben (B) 1:09 – 24-12 Burrell
152 – Corey Christie (B) tech. fall Brett Johnston (F) 17-0, 4:00 – 29-12 Burrell
160 – Shaun Gates (B) won by forfeit – 35-12 Burrell
170 – Dean Ward (F) dec. Austin Mele (B) 9-7, 2OT – 35-15 Burrell
182 – Anthony Marra (B) dec. Bryson Miller (F) 4-2, OT – 38-15 Burrell
195 – Mason Slahtovsky (B) fall Nick Wolfe (F) 4:50 – 44-15 Burrell
220 – Randy Simmons (F) fall Phil Coutch (B) 2:53 – 44-21 Burrell
285 – Evan Sweesy (F) won by forfeit – 44-27 Burrell
Derry Finishes in 3rd
After coming in second in their Section one week ago, Derry responded back in a big way. The Trojans looked strong in their match against South Fayette, winning 5 of the first 6 to take a 25-6 lead and winning the last 4 matches of the day to secure a 49-21 win and more importantly, a berth into the PIAA Championships. They will wrestle Monday night against the District 10 runner-up for the right to advance to Hershey on Thursday.
Derry Trojans 49 – South Fayette Lions 21
106 – Kace Sabedra (D) maj. dec. Noah Broyles (SF) 11-3 – 4-0 Derry
113 – Colin Dunn (SF) fall Garret Lenhart (D) 1:45 – 6-4 South Fayette
120 – Jason Baker (D) fall Eoin Horowitz (SF) 0:36 – 10-6 Derry
126 – Shawn Broadway (D) fall Cort Blatz (SF) 1:42 – 16-6 Derry
132 – Onreey Stewart (D) dec. Eli Brinsky (SF) 14-9 – 19-6 Derry
138 – Trey Weinell (D) fall Michael Gates (SF) 2:45 – 25-6 Derry
145 – Mike Cusick (SF) dec. Dom Jellison (D) 7-2 – 25-9 Derry
152 – Michael Dedi (SF) fall Gannon Lenhart (D) 5:28 – 25-15 Derry
160 – Colten Nemcheck (D) dec. Camden Hoover (SF) 7-4 – 28-15 Derry
170 – Joe Bastaroli (SF) fall Hunter Hebenthal (D) 4:28 – 28-21 Derry
182 – Dominic Deluca (D) fall Kirk Hegarty (SF) 1:49 – 34-21 Derry
195 – Matt Marron (D) dec. Mark Kurchena (SF) 2-0 OT – 37-21 Derry
220 – Hunter Edmiston (D) fall David Gubinsky (SF) 1:28 – 43-21 Derry
285 – Noah Wiencek (D) fall Jake Walker (SF) 2:23 – 49-21 Derry