Trib HSSN Wrestling Team of the Week for Feb. 16, 2021: Burrell Bucs

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Tuesday, February 16, 2021 | 6:01 AM


The No. 1 Burrell Bucs have won 45 consecutive matches in the WPIAL playoffs, and for the 15th year in a row, they were crowned WPIAL Class AA champions this past Saturday with a 38-18 victory over the Burgettstown Blue Devils. They did so in convincing fashion.

With consecutive wins from Aaron Edwards, Ian Oswalt, Damian Barr, Simon Slahtovsky, Colby Christie and AJ Corrado from 138 to 189 pounds, the Bucs went up 28-0. Barr, Christie, and Corrado all picked up pins.

The Blue Devils battled back into the match before freshman Cooper Hornack, who was just a toddler the last time Burrell lost in the WPIAL finals, stopped the bleeding with a 6-0 decision over Parker Sentipal at 106 pounds.

After an exciting match against Quaker Valley’s Logan Richey in the WPIAL semifinals, 120-pounder Niko Ferra had another close match against Burgettstown. He clinched the title for Burrell with a 4-3 win in ultimate tiebreaker. Burgettstown’s Gavin Suica was assessed a penalty point to end the match.

Nick Salerno earned a major decision over Rudy Brown at 132 pounds to end the match. The Bucs won nine of the 13 matches.

Burrell also beat Quaker Valley, 41-27, in the semifinals on Wednesday and captured its 18th straight section championship on Monday with a 51-12 win over Derry and a 49-18 victory over Mt. Pleasant.

Honorable mention

• Waynesburg: With a dominating 67-3 victory over Seneca Valley, the Raiders captured their second straight WPIAL title and seventh overall. They only dropped the 113-pound match when Seneca Valley’s Tyler Chappell earned an 8-3 decision over Joseph Simon. The Raiders also beat North Allegheny, 51-9, on Wednesday and captured their section title with a 66-6 victory over Peters Township on Monday.

Burgettstown: The Blue Devils earned their second straight trip to the WPIAL Class AA finals with a win over Beth-Center, 48-11, on Wednesday, winning 10 of the 13 weight classes. They also defeated Beth-Center on Monday to capture the Section 1 championship. Although they fell to Burrell for the second straight season on Saturday, they still won four matches. Dylan Slovick (113) picked up a forfeit, Joey Sentipal (126) picked up a decision over Burrell’s Shawn Szymanski, and Shane Kemper (215) picked up the lone pine of the match for Burgettstown. Heavyweight Joey Baronick earned a 5-0 decision over Philip Walsh.

Seneca Valley: The Raiders earned their third straight trip to the WPIAL Class AAA finals. But, without key wrestlers like Alejandro Herrera-Rondon, Antonio Amelio, Dylan Chappell and Chanz Shearer, they didn’t quite stand a chance against Waynesburg. They won their section title with a win over North Allegheny, 36-27, on Monday and punched their ticket to the finals with a 42-24 win over Connellsville.

Quaker Valley: In just five years of existence, the Quakers wrestling program continues to prove it belongs in the conversation. They won their third straight section championship on Monday with a 45-21 victory over Montour. They’ve also punched their ticket to the WPIAL Class AA semifinals the past three seasons and lost to Burrell the past two. Just a few weeks after losing to Mt. Pleasant, 42-21, at the Hampton Dawg Duals, the Quakers took down the Vikings in the quarterfinals, 36-32, before pushing Burrell to the edge in a 41-27 loss in the semifinals.

Greg Macafee is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Greg by email at gmacafee@triblive.com or via Twitter .

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