Thomas Jefferson’s Shaw ‘very pleased’ with PIAA bronze

Friday, March 16, 2018 | 11:00 PM

Max Shaw capped his brilliant 2017-18 wrestling season at Thomas Jefferson with a third-place finish at the PIAA Class AAA tournament at Hershey's Giant Center.

Shaw, a junior and two-sport standout, defeated Butler's Christian Sequete, 7-2, in the third-place consolations at 182 pounds.

“I'm very pleased with how I performed at the state tournament,” Shaw said. “Winning was obviously the ultimate goal, but getting on the podium, especially on the upper half, was my main focus.

“However, I'm more pleased with the progress I've made throughout the season as far as my skills and endurance. My coaches and I worked relentlessly.”

Shaw rolled past Council Rock South's Giani Gilch, 11-0; Big Spring's Blake Barrick, 5-2; and Delaware Valley's Andrew Kidd, 5-2; before losing to Albert Gallatin's Tim Wallace, a section rival, in the semifinal round.

Shaw, a captain, finished 34-4 this season. He also led the Jaguars in technical falls.

“The competition at the state tournament was absolutely phenomenal,” Shaw said. “The intensity was through the roof, and there is nowhere to hide.”

Shaw also placed third at 182 pounds at the WPIAL championships, defeating Hampton's Justin Hart, 5-3, in the consolation round.

“Getting through the WPIAL championships is a hefty task itself,” Shaw said. “Wrestling on this side of the state is the real deal. When you look at how many WPIAL guys brought home (PIAA) medals, it should speak for itself. I thought as a whole we had a great showing.”

Seven other TJ grapplers qualified for the WPIAL championships, consisting of senior Kellen Lynch (113), junior Alex Weber (138), sophomores Brendan Finnerty (132) and Denver Haynes (220) and freshmen Nathan Krutules (106), Kale Buckiso (120) and Michael Zacur (126).

Lynch, Weber, Krutules and Buckiso advanced to the quarterfinal round at the WPIAL finals. Shaw, a starting linebacker on the football team, already is looking forward to his senior year at TJ. Until then, he will train to enhance his two-sport status.

“My expectations for next year are higher,” Shaw said. “Nothing would please me more as a wrestler than to finish out my high school career as a PIAA champion. As for the (TJ) wrestling team, I also have lofty expectations, only because I truly believe we have the ability. ”

Ray Fisher is a freelance writer.


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