Fisher’s Files: Quaker Valley coach in favor of new wrestling rules

Sunday, May 19, 2024 | 11:01 AM

The National Federation of State High School Associations has made new rule changes for wrestling in the offseason.

• Beginning next season, wrestlers will be considered in bounds with only one point of contact by either competitor inside or on the boundary line.

• Another change is three points for a takedown and more points for near falls (two for a two-count, three for a three-count and four for a four-count).

The rule changes are following what colleges have been using the past few years. Austin Heinl, Quaker Valley’s highly successful wrestling coach, supports the PIAA adopting the changes as early as the 2024-25 season.

“I believe they will adopt the rules. I hope they do,” Heinl said. “I really like the college rules for wrestling. I’m glad the high school association is making a push to bridge the gap between high school and college wrestling. It’s going to be hard to implement everything college wrestling does, but I think the more consistent the rules are between high school and college wrestling the better it sets up the student-athletes and college coaches for success.

“The out-of-bounds rule is probably my favorite. Youth tournaments almost always opt for the college out-of-bounds rules over the high school one due to how much it’s preferred over the other. I hope to see some of the stalling rules in college wrestling trickle down to high school wrestling, as well.”

The Quakers won their sixth consecutive section championship with a 6-0 record in 2023-24 and finished 13-3 overall.

QV advanced to the PIAA tournament as the WPIAL’s third-place team.

Quakers track athletes qualify

Quaker Valley participated in the Northern Area Last-Chance track and field meet May 9 at Pine-Richland.

“The meet was somewhat squandered by weather,” QV coach Jared Jones said, “but Rose Pocasangre was able to improve her seed time in the 300-meter hurdles and Maggie Doz was able to improve her 3,200-meter time for one of the last qualifying spots for WPIALs.”

Pocasangre registered a time of 47.92 to take third in the 300 hurdles. She also placed ninth in the 100 hurdles in 16.88.

Doz posted a 13:03.75 time in the 3,200. Doz and Pocasangre are freshmen.

Other top 10 performances for the QV girls team were attained by junior Jay Olawaiye, the runner-up in the long jump with a mark of 16 feet, 4.25 inches; junior Kwilai Karto, who placed third in the 400 in 1:00.34; senior Ellie Cain, with a ninth-place showing in the 1,600 in 5:30.69; and freshman Maddie Gatehouse, 10th in the 200 in 28.42.

QV’s boys team was led by sophomore Xander Vescio, who placed seventh in the 110 hurdles event in 16.82, and Oliver Graham, a senior who corralled 10th place in the 3,200 in 10:24.89.

SA baseball falls in 1st round

Winning pitcher Jordan Smith, a senior hurler, infielder and outfielder, doubled and knocked in two runs May 6 as the Sewickley Academy baseball team held on to defeat Carlynton, 5-4, in a Section 3-A game.

Smith was the team’s leading hitter this season.

Junior P/C/INF/OF Will Straka and sophomore outfielder drove in a run apiece for the Panthers against Carlynton.

Sewickley finished fourth in Section 3-A with a 5-7 record and was 5-10 overall.

The Panthers received the No. 12 seed for the WPIAL playoffs where they lost to No. 5 Western Beaver, 11-5, in a May 14 first-round matchup.

Straka went 3 for 3 with a double.

MacDonald takes 6th at championships

Quaker Valley graduate Alex MacDonald is finishing his first year at Amherst College as a member of the men’s track and field program.

MacDonald placed sixth in the discus event at the NESCAC Championships held April 27 at Tufts University. His toss of 42.79 meters was less than 2 meters off first place.

The Mammoths tallied 151.5 points to finish second in the team scoring which matched their best finish at the conference championship. Host Tufts won its third straight title with 173.5 points.

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