RSSCategory: High School Wrestling

Huskies Get by Saint Marys in Final Dual of the Season

| February 16, 2018 | 0 Comments

Despite missing four starters from the lineup, Mifflin County rode the return of Joey Taptich and a decisive win from Anthony Fultz to a 37-33 dual meet victory over Saint Marys on Thursday.

The Huskies end the regular season with a 12-7 record and now have a week off before a date at the District 6, Class 3A championships in Altoona on Saturday, February, 24.

“This dual meet broke up the monotony of practice because that’s what could end up happening where you have a couple weeks of just practicing,” Mifflin County coach Kirby Martin said. “Hopefully, this keeps our edge heading into next weekend. We need to have several good days of practice. We need to continue to practice with a lot of pace, keep building our conditioning, and just start to get excited about the postseason.”

The Huskies, without the services of Christian Fisher (113), John Retherford (138), Dylan Grassmyer (195) and Kross Todaro (220), won seven bouts picking up bonus points in six of those. Mifflin County had three forfeits, two falls, and a major decision to go along with a regular decision.

With the Flying Dutchmen leading 27-25, the match at 195 would decide the dual meet with forfeits coming to Saint Marys at 220 and the Huskies at heavyweight. Anthony Fultz jumped up two weight classes and the senior gave Mifflin County the victory with a fall over Sean Lathrop.

“It came down to the end and unfortunately, we needed every single point. I’m very proud of him as a senior to get a pin in our last dual meet of the season to seal the match,” Martin said. “He’s put in his time. He’s been with us for four years. He was a starter earlier in the season, but with guys moving weight classes, he got bumped out. Tonight, he had one more chance and made the most of it.”

Fultz got a quick takedown, locked up a tight cradle and referee Gary Barger slapped the mat for the fall in 29 seconds.

“There was a lot of fire there. It’s my last match. I won’t be going on to districts or anything, so I figured put it all out there,” Fultz said. “I had that kid tight and obviously it worked. I got the pin pretty quick. I figured as long as I didn’t get tired out I could get the win. It’s pretty awesome. I’m never going to forget this or the team. It’s been a big part of my life shaping me as a person.

“Wrestling has instilled in me a lot of good habits and it’s made me a better person. I was just trying to do my job and win the match.”

Taptich made his season debut at 126 after missing the majority of the regular season with a broken hand. The Husky senior didn’t disappoint the home crowd coming away with a 13-4 major over Greg Tettis.

“Leading up to this day, I was so anxious and so ready to just get after it. I felt so restrained for two or three months working out every morning and after school,” Taptich said. “It felt so good to break out here with the home crowd one last time. It’s an awesome experience and one of my favorite feelings I’ve ever had in my life. I’m glad I was able to get back here for one. I would have liked to get back for more. My mindset is to go out and wrestle as hard as I can for six minutes.”

Taptich, showing no signs of mat rust, scoring four takedowns, three off a sharp double, two escapes and three back points to roll to the victory.

“His initial takedowns were excellent. He needs to put in some work in the room and get his conditioning up, but hopefully, this will build his confidence,” Martin said.

At 120, Derek Burk (18-13) jumped out to a 10-2 lead after two periods and then had to fight off a hard-charging Tylor Herzing in the third for the 12-8 victory. Taptich followed with a win and at 132, Logan Wise (23-12) decked Hayden Tettis with a headlock for the fall in 1:31 to give the Huskies a 13-6 lead.

Back-to-back falls by the Dutchmen (5-11) gave the visitors an 18-13 lead before Trey Kibe (31-5) built an 11-3 advantage before pinning Jeremy Garthwaite in 2:29 of their 152-pound match, giving Mifflin County the lead back at 19-18.

At 170, Trent Hidlay didn’t get to wrestle in front of the home crowd for his final bout in the Husky gymnasium, thanks to a forfeit by Saint Marys that brought the Husky boo-birds out in full force. Hidlay is now 32-0 on the season and winner of 70 in a row.

In the match of the night, Jacob Krepps lost a hard-fought bout to Zach Becker by a 4-2 count in the overtime tiebreaker at 182. After a scoreless first, Becker (29-5) received a penalty point and an escape to make it 2-0. Krepps (19-13) scored a takedown to even things up at 2-2. A scoreless first and sudden death forced the 30-second rideouts.

In the first rideout, Krepps got too high and Becker shrugged him off to come around for a reversal. The Husky sophomore couldn’t get off the bottom in the second rideout in the 4-2 loss.

Bronson Smith-Price picked up a forfeit to end the scoring for Mifflin County.

The Husky junior high won 50-29 and some wore singlets from the Lewistown, Kish, Indian Valley and Rothrock days. Singlets couldn’t be found for Chief Logan and Penn Highlands.

Mifflin County 37, Saint Marys 33
113: Eddie Messineo (SMAH) over (MCH) (For.) 120: Derek Burk (MCH) over Tylor Herzing (SMAH) (Dec 12-8) 126: Joey Taptich (MCH) over Gregory Tettis (SMAH) (MD 13-4) 132: Logan Wise (MCH) over Hayden Tettis (SMAH) (Fall 1:31) 138: Johnny Wittman (SMAH) over Max Oburn (MCH) (Fall 5:31) 145: Alec Bittler (SMAH) over Brycen Hassinger (MCH) (Fall 1:00) 152: Trey Kibe (MCH) over Jeremy Garthwaite (SMAH) (Fall 2:29) 160: Tim Beimel (SMAH) over Brian Smink (MCH) (Fall 2:46) 170: Trent Hidlay (MCH) over (SMAH) (For.) 182: Zach Becker (SMAH) over Jacob Krepps (MCH) (TB-1 4-2) 195: Anthony Fultz (MCH) over Sean Lathrop (SMAH) (Fall 0:27) 220: Michael Rusciolelli (SMAH) over (MCH) (For.) 285: Bronson Smith-Price (MCH) over (SMAH) (For.) 106: Double Forfeit

Mifflin County vs. Saint Marys Preview

| February 15, 2018 | 0 Comments

Mifflin County closes out its regular season at home tonight with a dual meet against Saint Marys out of District 9. The Huskies will use this as a tune-up to get ready for the postseason, beginning next Saturday in Altoona at the District 6 Class AAA championships.

The Flying Dutchmen are 5-10 on the season having beaten Punxsutawney, Curwensville, Redbank Valley, Coudersport, and Warren. Saint Marys has been behind the eight-ball in dual meets having to forfeit at three weights (106, 195, and heavyweight) for most of the season.

Leading the way for the Dutchmen is junior Alec Bittler, ranked tenth in the state at 145. Bittler sports a 23-3 overall record. Other top wrestlers for Saint Marys include sophomore Tylor Herzing (23-8 at 120), along with seniors Hayden Tettis (19-8 at 132) and Zach Becker (28-5 at 182).

The Huskies (11-7) captured the District 6 championship two weeks ago with wins over Central Mountain (36-35) and Bald Eagle Area (36-33). Mifflin County stumbled at the PIAA Duals – dropping a 47-18 decision to Nazareth and a 42-27 loss to Central Dauphin.

Mifflin County features three ranked wrestlers in senior Trent Hidlay (No. 1 at 170), junior Christian Fisher (No. 15 at 113), and freshman Trey Kibe (No. 9 at 152). Hidlay is 31-0 on the season and a winner of 69 straight matches. Kibe is 30-5, and Fisher is 25-7.

Other winning wrestlers for the Huskies include Derek Burk (17-13 at 120), Logan Wise (22-12 at 126/132), John Retherford (14-12 at 138), Jacob Krepps (19-12 at 182), and Kross Todaro (20-9 at 220). Look for the return of Joey Taptich to the lineup tonight. The Husky senior missed most of the regular season with a broken hand.

Here is the probable lineup for tonight’s dual with Mifflin County wrestlers listed first:

106: No match
113: No. 15 Christian Fisher, Jr. (25-7) vs. Eddie Messineo, Fr. (4-14)
120: Joey Taptich, Sr. (0-0) or Derek Burk, So. (17-13) vs. Tylor Herzing, So. (23-8)
126: Taptich or Burk vs. Greg Tettis, So. (10-13)
132: Logan Wise, Sr. (22-12) vs. Hayden Tettis, Sr. (19-8)
138: John Retherford Jr. (14-12) vs. Johnny Wittman, So. (14-11) or Nick Crisp, Fr. (9-2)
145: Brycen Hassinger, Fr. (9-16) vs. No. 10 Alec Bittler, Jr. (23-3)
152: No. 9 Trey Kibe, Fr. (30-5) vs. Jeremy Garthwaite, Fr. (14-16)
160: Cole Baker, Sr. (2-17) or Haydn Crum, So. (0-3) vs. Austin Sadosky, Sr. (4-8) or Tim Beimel, Sr. (7-5)
170: No. 1 Trent Hidlay Sr. (31-0) vs. Sean Lathrop, Fr. (9-15) or Sadosky
182: Jacob Krepps, So. (19-12) vs. Zach Becker, Sr. (28-5)
195: Dylan Grassmyer, Jr. (2-8) vs. Lathrop or Forfeit
220: Kross Todaro, Sr. (20-9) vs. Michael Rusciolelli, Sr. (10-10)
285: Bronson Smith-Price, So. (11-13) vs. Forfeit

Forfeits Hurt Mifflin County in Loss to Central Dauphin

| February 9, 2018 | 2 Comments

It’s hard enough to win a match at the PIAA Duals with a full squad. Forfeit two weights and it’s almost impossible to claim a victory.

Mifflin faced such a situation against Central Dauphin. The Huskies had two forfeits at 106 and 220 giving the Rams the 42-27 victory in the first round of consolations at the state duals on Saturday morning.

With the loss, the Huskies (11-7) remain winless at 0-8 in four appearances at the PIAA Duals. The forfeits, coupled with toss-up defeats at heavyweight and 145, proved to be the difference as the Rams (20-3) stopped Mifflin County for the second time this season.

Central Dauphin took a 9-0 lead to start the match with a decision and forfeit before Mifflin County rallied to make it 9-6. At 113, Christian Fisher stopped Tye Weathersby 6-0 and Derek Burk made a takedown in the second and an escape in the third stand up in the 3-0 victory at 120.

The Rams captured four of the next five matches to move out to the 30-12 advantage before the Huskies started their comeback. Central Dauphin added bonus points in all four wins with two falls, a technical fall, and a major decision. The only Husky winner during that stretch was John Retherford at 138. Retherford pinned Bryce Buckman in 2:11.

Trey Kibe (30-5) kicked off the rally for Mifflin County with a fall in 2:55 over Tim Smith at 160. The Husky freshman scored a takedown in the first with an escape and deuce in the second before cranking Smith over to his back. Trent Hidlay (31-0) followed at 170 and was like a shark after chum – building a 10-1 lead before decking Micah Hillegas in 1:37. At 182, Jacob Krepps (19-12) had two takedowns, an escape, and a penalty point in the 6-1 win over Jackson Talbott.

With the Huskies trailing 30-27 with two bouts left, Cian Blythe recorded a fall over Dylan Grassmyer at 195 and Mitchell Talbott got the forfeit at 220 setting the final score.

Mifflin County hosts Saint Marys in the final dual of the regular season on Thursday, February 15.

Central Dauphin 42, Mifflin County 27
285: Carter Urich (CDH) over Bronson Smith-Price (MCH) (Dec 1-0) 106: Josh Miller (CDH) over (MCH) (For.) 113: Christian Fisher (MCH) over Tye Weathersby (CDH) (Dec 6-0) 120: Derek Burk (MCH) over Mitchell Arch (CDH) (Dec 3-1) 126: Chris Wright (CDH) over Josh Snook (MCH) (Fall 2:08) 132: Andrew Wert (CDH) over Logan Wise (MCH) (TF 16-0 4:28) 138: John Retherford (MCH) over Bryce Buckman (CDH) (Fall 2:11) 145: Hunter Bentz (CDH) over Brian Smink (MCH) (MD 15-1) 152: Kollin McCullough (CDH) over Brycen Hassinger (MCH) (Fall 1:37) 160: Trey Kibe (MCH) over Timothy Smith (CDH) (Fall 2:55) 170: Trent Hidlay (MCH) over Micah Hillegass (CDH) (Fall 1:37) 182: Jacob Krepps (MCH) over Jackson Talbott (CDH) (Dec 6-1) 195: Cian Blythe (CDH) over Dylan Grassmyer (MCH) (Fall 0:31) 220: Mitchell Talbott (CDH) over (MCH) (For.)

Nazareth Controls Mifflin County in 47-18 PIAA Duals Win

| February 9, 2018 | 0 Comments

Christian Fisher works for the takedown against Andrew Smith of Nazareth.          Photo by Jeff Fishbein, sports editor of the Lewistown Sentinel.

Nazareth is a name symbolic with the elite in Pennsylvania wrestling and they showed it Thursday evening in a dominant 47-18 victory in the first round of the PIAA Class AAA Duals.

The Blue Eagles (17-3) were in command on their feet – claiming a 32-12 takedown advantage and winning 10 of 14 bouts with seven earning bonus points.

The Huskies (11-6) had an early 6-0 lead when the ever-improving Bronson Smith-Price turned Justyce Searock over to his back for the fall in 3:56. Smith-Price (11-12) pinned his last three opponents.

Nazareth proceeded to claim the next seven bouts to grab a commanding 32-6 advantage. The Blue Eagles earned two decisions, a forfeit, two falls, and two majors during the run.

Mifflin County slick freshman Trey Kibe stopped the bleeding with an impressive 3-0 win over Nate Stefanik in a battle of state-ranked wrestlers. Kibe (29-5) broke a scoreless tie in the third with an escape and sweet ankle pick for the 3-0 victory. Kibe, ranked ninth, rode Stefanik (No. 14) the entire second period.

Trent Hidlay remained undefeated on the season with a fall in 3:56 over Jake Dressler at 170. Hidlay (30-0), owner of a 68-match winning streak, had nine takedowns and built up a 19-8 lead before getting the fall. At 182, Jacob Krepps (18-12) made a an escape and takedown in the second-period stand up for the 3-1 win over Zach Keifer.

The Huskies face Mid-Penn Commonwealth foe Central Dauphin (19-3) in the first round of consolations today at 10 a.m.

Nazareth 47, Mifflin County 18

285-Bronson Smith-Price, (MIFFLIN COUNTY) Fall Justyce Searock, (NAZARETH AREA) 3:56
106-Andreo Ferraina, (NAZARETH AREA) For Any Wrestler, (MIFFLIN COUNTY)
113-Andrew Smith, (NAZARETH AREA) Dec Christian Fisher, (MIFFLIN COUNTY) 6-3
120-Blaine Wilson, (NAZARETH AREA) Dec Derek Burk, (MIFFLIN COUNTY) 15-9
126-Drew Clearie, (NAZARETH AREA) Fall Josh Snook, (MIFFLIN COUNTY) 0:53
132-Sean Pierson, (NAZARETH AREA) Major Logan Wise, (MIFFLIN COUNTY) 19-8
138-Andrew Cerniglia, (NAZARETH AREA) Fall John Retherford, (MIFFLIN COUNTY) 3:29
145-Connor Herceg, (NAZARETH AREA) Major Brycen Hassinger, (MIFFLIN COUNTY) 15-6
152-Trey Kibe, (MIFFLIN COUNTY) Dec Nathan Stefanik, (NAZARETH AREA) 3-0
160-Samuel Sasso, (NAZARETH AREA) Fall Hadyn Crum, (MIFFLIN COUNTY) 2:56
170-Trent Hidlay, (MIFFLIN COUNTY) Fall Jake Dressler, (NAZARETH AREA) 3:25
182-Jacob Krepps, (MIFFLIN COUNTY) Dec Zachary Keifer, (NAZARETH AREA) 3-1
195-Cade Wilson, (NAZARETH AREA) For Any Wrestler, (MIFFLIN COUNTY)
220-Stephen Schott, (NAZARETH AREA) Dec Dylan Grassmyer, (MIFFLIN COUNTY) 5-3

Martin, Huskies Looking For First Win at State Duals

| February 8, 2018 | 0 Comments

There are many accomplishments in the seven-year history of the Mifflin County wrestling program – four District 6 Class AAA Dual meet championships, three District 6 tournament crowns, and a Northwest Regional title.

Even with all the accolades, one team goal on coach Kirby Martin’s to-do list hasn’t happened yet – a win at state duals. Last week’s stunning performance at the District 6 Duals gives the Huskies another chance to notch a win at Hershey. In three previous appearances, the Purple and Black are 0-6 at the Giant Center.

“We still have not one a match down there. It is getting to the point where it’s frustrating because yes, it’s great getting there, but you still want to make ripples at that tournament,” Martin said. “Getting a win down there is one of our top goals.

Standing in the way of that victory is a formidable foe in Nazareth. The Blue Eagles are the defending state champions who demolished Spring Grove 60-3 on Monday in preliminary round action. Nazareth has a tradition dating back to the fifties when Harold Wilson won the first state title for the school in 1954. The program owns two state team championships (2006 and 2017) along with 23 state champions, 50 state finalists, and 97 individual PIAA medals.

The Blue Eagles are 16-3 on the season with two of their losses coming to top-ranked and District 11 rival Bethlehem Catholic. The other loss was to a team from Maryland by one point. To say that Nazareth, ranked fourth in the state, is loaded is an understatement.

Coach Dave Crowell has a lineup stacked with talent featuring seven state-ranked wrestlers led by senior Sammy Sasso, ranked first at 152 and a returning PIAA champion heading to Ohio State. Also ranked are Andreo Ferraina (No. 24 at 106), Andrew Smith (No. 12 at 113), Sean Pierson (No. 10 at 126), Ryan O’Grady (No. 14 at 138), Nate Stefanik (No. 14 at 152), and Cade Wilson (No. 3 at 195).

In addition to Sasso, Pierson, Wilson and Andrew Cerniglia (132), back after missing the regular season due to injury, earned individual medals at states a year ago.

It goes without saying, but Martin knows the challenges his squad faces Friday evening.

“Nazareth is an elite program in Pennsylvania. They have a hall-of-fame coach. They are a powerhouse,” Martin said. “I really respect how they go about their business. Their kids are well-coached and handle themselves off the mat. I have a tremendous amount of respect for who they are and how they wrestle. It’s always an honor and a privilege to wrestle Dave Crowell and one of his teams or kids.”

The Huskies (11-5) are wrestling their best at the right time thanks to a brutal schedule featuring King of the Mountain, Powerade, and the Ultimate Warrior Tournament, as well as an always rugged Mid-Penn Commonwealth slate. The evidence of their toughness was on full display last week in wins over heavily favored Central Mountain (36-35) and BEA (36-33) to claim district honors.

No. 15 Mifflin County has three ranked wrestlers in the fold – junior Christian Fisher (No. 14 at 113), freshman Trey Kibe (No. 9 at 152), and PIAA champion Trent Hidlay (No. 1 at 170). The Blue Eagles defeated the Huskies 31-30 in the first round of the 2016 state duals.

Giving up a forfeit at 106 is not an ideal situation when facing a team like Nazareth which is why Martin must get significant contributions not only from his big five but everyone up and down the lineup. Even in a loss, the key is not to give up bonus points. If he can get the same performances from Derek Burk, Logan Wise, John Retherford, Josh Snook, and Bronson Smith-Price like he did last Saturday, Martin may get that elusive win at state duals.

“We have to wrestle our best match. We have to wrestle with a lot of energy and intensity. We’ll have to weather the storm at times because they have some awesome wrestlers,” Martin said. “The weekend at district duals was outstanding, but representing this county and the kids that are in our program, have been through the program, and are coming up through, to be at the state tournament, whether team or individual event, is the highest level you can reach. We want to continue to set a standard for the younger wrestlers coming up that this is something we are capable of year in and year out if we sacrifice and work hard.”

First-round action with Nazareth gets underway at 8 p.m. Thursday evening at the Giant Center in Hershey. Win or lose; the Huskies face either Central Dauphin or third-ranked Kiski Area in the quarterfinals (2 p.m.) or the consolations (10 a.m.) on Friday. The Rams defeated the Huskies in the regular season 35-26.

Here are the probable lineups for the Nazareth match. Look for the Huskies to move people up for this dual meet, maybe from 152 on up to 220. What I have below will change during the match. This the regular lineup for both teams during the season.

#4 Nazareth Blue Eagles (16-3) vs. #15 Mifflin County Huskies (11-5)

106: Forfeit vs. No. 24 Andreo Ferraina, Fr. (18-12)
113: No. 14 Christian Fisher, Jr. (24-6) vs. No. 12 Andrew Smith, So. (17-5)
120: Derek Burk, So. (16-12) vs. Blaine Wilson, So. (23-12)
126: Logan Wise, Sr. (22-10) vs. No. 10 Sean Pierson, Jr. (31-6)
132: Josh Snook, Jr. (6-16) vs. Andrew Cerniglia, So. (2-1)
138: John Retherford Jr. (13-11) vs. No. 14 Ryan O’Grady, Sr. (21-9)
145: Brycen Hassinger, Fr. (9-14) vs. Connor Herceg, So. (23-9)
152: No. 9 Trey Kibe, Fr. (28-5) vs. No. 14 Nate Stefanik, So. (18-6)
160: Cole Baker, Sr. (2-17) vs. No. 1 Sammy Sasso, Sr. (31-1)
170: No. 1 Trent Hidlay Sr. (29-0) vs. Jake Dressler, So. (15-13)
182: Jacob Krepps, So. (17-12) vs. Zach Keifer, Sr. (11-7)
195: Dylan Grassmyer, Jr. (2-6) vs. No. 3 Cade Wilson, Sr. (28-4)
220: Kross Todaro, Sr. (20-9) vs. Stephen Schott, So. (18-9)
285: Bronson Smith-Price, So. (10-12) vs. Justyce Searock, jr. (13-15)