Burrell’s A.J. Corrado wins state title with overtime pin

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Friday, March 12, 2021 | 9:52 PM


HERSHEY – AJ Corrado didn’t have pancakes for breakfast Friday, but he served one up in the PIAA Class AA finals.

He pancaked Midd-West senior Avery Bassett in overtime for a pin in the 160-pound final and celebrated his first PIAA title to cap off a historic day for the Burrell program at the Giant Center.

The score was tied 1-1 when Corrado attacked.

“I knew he was going to take that shot, and I was actually looking to hit the pancake,” Corrado said. “When he took it, I saw the opening and hit it. It was something I’ve been working on ever since I came to Burrell. I use it a lot. I guess I serve breakfast, lunch and dinner.”

Corrado actually had three close matches, so he was used to the close battles.

“I feel I’m in better shape than most wrestlers,” Corrado said. “I wrestle all my matches where I slowed down my opponents. I train hard every day and I feel great.”

Corrado (34-0, 155-35) also finished as a four-time PIAA placewinner.

It was the first time the school had three finalists during the same season.

Burrell freshman Cooper Hornack (28-3) had never reached the finals in a state event during his illustrious youth wrestling career.

And while he dropped a 6-2 decision to Hickory freshman Louie Gill, it ended up being a learning experience. Hornack defeated Gill at the West Super Region on March 6.

Gill was able to expose Hornack’s back to the mat to pick up three near-fall points in the second period.

“Losing here makes me want to work even harder,” Hornack said. “I just got caught in the second period. I thought I wrestled well until that point.”

Burrell senior Ian Oswalt (24-3) lost a 1-0 heartbreaker to three-time PIAA champion Glendale senior Brock McMillan in a rematch from the 2020 final.

McMillen was able to escape in the second period and held on for the win. He finished 6-0 in his career against Oswalt.

“He’s tough on top. He’s a leech,” Oswalt said. “He hangs on for dear life. He does a really good job to sag on the opposite side and covers your hips.

“That’s no excuse. I shouldn’t get ridden out in the state finals. I was close to taking him down in the first period, but I just couldn’t finish.”

Oswalt said he wasn’t supposed to wrestle this season because of a leg injury that could require surgery.

He said it’s not an excuse for losing.

Oswalt (164-24) finished his career as a four-time PIAA placewinner and two-time runner-up.

Paul Schofield is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Paul by email at pschofield@triblive.com or via Twitter .

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