Marquee matchup highlights Westmoreland County Tournament

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Tuesday, February 9, 2021 | 7:05 PM


The Westmoreland County Wrestling Tournament always seems to feature a lot of great matchups.

The 2021 tournament had more than its usual marquee matchups Saturday.

Some of the matches pitted the top wrestlers in the state. That included Latrobe’s Vinny Kilkeary and Penn-Trafford’s Troy Hohman, Franklin Regional senior Carter Dibert and Hempfield senior Ethan Berginc, Hempfield junior Briar Priest and Latrobe sophomore Nathan Roth, Franklin Regional’s Finn Solomon and Hempfield’s Lucas Kapusta, Hempfield’s Tyler Linsenbigler and Franklin Regional’s Garrett Thompson and Burrell senior AJ Corrado against Kiski Area junior Enzo Morlacci.

But the 215-pound matchup featured the Tribune-Review’s No. 1 seeds: Mt. Pleasant junior Dayton Pitzer in Class AA and Belle Vernon junior Cole Weightman in Class AAA.

Pitzer defeated Weightman for the second time this season, rallying for a 6-4 victory. Pitzer’s dominance in the top position prevented Weightman from scoring during the final two periods.

Pitzer defeated Weightman, 7-4, on Jan. 16 at the Mid-Winter Mayhem.

Weightman snagged the first takedown, then the two exchanged reversals. But Pitzer added a second reversal to tie the score 4-4 after the first period.

“I got the first takedown and a reversal, and I was feeling good,” Weightman said. “I’m still a little out of shape. I need to get back in the room and keep working.”

Pitzer started on the bottom to begin the second period and got a reversal for a 6-4 lead. He then controlled the rest of the match in the top position.

“Conditioning was the difference in the match,” Pitzer said. “It went back and forth at the beginning, I just kept my composure because I knew I could go the entire six minutes hard, and it worked out in my favor. I try to be as tough as I can in every position. I felt I could keep him down.”

Pitzer and Weightman have met numerous times over the years and respect each other.

“Cole is a great competitor,” Pitzer said. “I enjoy wrestling guys like that. I get better from that. In the end, it all adds up. Wrestling guys like that helps you.”

Weightman said the lack of being in the practice room has slowed him.

“This match will help me with everything I did wrong,” Weightman said. “I need to get a better push off the bottom.

“We’ve been battling our entire lives. He does everything well. He’s really good on top; I really couldn’t do anything. Bottom, he’s really good. He’s all-around a little bit better wrestler than I am.”

Pitzer was pleased to finally win a county title but knows if he wants to win a second state title, he has more work to do.

“It feels good to win a county title,” Pitzer said. “I finished second as a freshman, and I wasn’t able to wrestle last year. I definitely need to work on a lot more things and get better.”

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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