Waynesburg Central, Quaker Valley Victorious at WPIAL Team Wrestling Finals
Monday, February 7, 2022
Pittsburgh, Pa. – The Western Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic League (WPIAL) crowned a three-peat champion and a first-time champion this past Saturday, Feb. 5, as Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association (PIAA) District 7 held its WPIAL Team Wrestling Championships for the 2A and 3A classifications.
3A RECAP [Bracket]
Waynesburg Central made it three straight WPIAL team wrestling titles, as it defeated Connellsville, 35-18, to capture the 3A crown at Peters Township High School.
The Raiders advanced to Saturday’s final four following wins over Thomas Jefferson (61-3) and Norwin (52-10) on Wednesday, Feb. 2, then knocked off Canon-McMillian, 36-22, to move onto the final. Their opponent Connellsville first qualified for Saturday with victories over Peters Township (56-10) and Kiski Area (42-18), then defeated Greater Latrobe, 37-27, to set up a bout with Waynesburg Central.
Starting at the 113 weight class, the Raiders jumped out to a 12-0 lead with wins by decision from Ky Szewczyk, Joseph Simon, Zander Phaturos, and Mac Church. The Falcons responded with a 7-5 triumph at 138 by Lonzy Vielma to make it 12-3, but Cole Homet eked out a 5-4 win at 145 to restore Waynesburg Central’s 12-point advantage.
Connellsville cut into the gap with wins at 152 and 160. Ethan Ansell collected a 5-0 decision at 152 before 160 featured the first pin of the finals, as Jared Keslar won in 3:21 to make it 15-12.
Rocco Welsh halted the Falcons run at 172, winning by technical fall, 22-5, to push the Raider lead to 20-12. Brody Evans added three more points at 189 with a 5-1 decision, then Eli Makel (215) and Noah Tustin (285) sealed the three-peat with pinfalls at 1:46 and 0:31, respectively.
In the third-place consolation final, Greater Latrobe defeated Canon-McMillian, 40-25.
All four finalists have qualified for the PIAA 3A Team Wrestling Championships, which will take place from Feb. 7-12. In the preliminary round on Monday, Feb. 7, Greater Latrobe will travel to Carrick and Canon-McMillian will face Cumberland Valley on the road. The winners will advance to Hershey for the first round on Thursday, Feb. 10, where they will join Waynesburg Central (who wrestles either Spring-Ford or Dallastown) and Connellsville (who wrestles La Salle College).
2A RECAP [Bracket]
Quaker Valley ended Burrell’s 15-year run at the top of the 2A classification, topping the Bucs in a 30-28 thriller at Chartiers-Houston High School.
The Quakers qualified for Saturday’s semifinals with a 48-26 win over Laurel on Wednesday, Feb. 2, while Burrell dispatched of Montour, 57-18, to start its title defense. Quaker Valley then knocked off Burgettstown to start the afternoon, 36-35, and the Bucs were victorious over Mt. Pleasant, 37-28, to set up the 2A final.
The match started at the 160 weight class, as Burrell jumped out to a 12-0 lead with decision wins by Nico Zanella (3-1) and Damian Barr (5-1) before Cam Martin scored a pinfall in 3:05 at 189.
Martin’s pin started a streak of five straight, with Quaker Valley on the right side of three of those. Patrick Cutchmember scored a pinfall in 5:48 at 215, but Luke Boylan responded for the Bucs with one in 2:50 at 285. The Quakers then earned pinfall victories at 106 and 113, with Issac Maccaglia (2:29) and Jack Kazalas (0:54) scoring them back-to-back to tie the match at 18-18.
Burrell regained the lead with a narrow 4-3 decision by Cooper Hornack at 120, but that would be short-lived as Quaker Valley netted decisions from Marcus Richey at 126 (8-5) and Brandon Krul at 132 (4-3) to go ahead for the first time, 24-21.
The Bucs battled back, earning a 12-3 major decision from Issac Lacinski at 138 to move ahead once more, 25-24. Shawn Szymanski followed that up with a 5-3 decision at 145 to give Burrell three more team points, but the Quakers’ Justin Richey secured a pinfall at 152 in 0:37 to secure the school’s first WPIAL team wrestling championship.
Burgettstown defeated Mt. Pleasant, 43-20, in the third-place consolation final to clinch the final PIAA spot.
Quaker Valley, Burrell, and Burgettstown move onto the PIAA 2A Team Wrestling Championships, which will run from Feb. 7-12. Burgettstown will travel to Fort LeBoeuf for the preliminary round on Monday, Feb. 7, while Burrell is set to face Bishop McDevitt in the first round on Thursday, Feb. 10 in Hershey. Quaker Valley will face the winner of Saucon Valley/Canton on Thursday in the first round.
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