Carson’s Corner: High Expectations for Huskies in 2014-15

| December 5, 2014 | 0 Comments

MugThe Mifflin County wrestling team is set to begin season number four with high expectations in 2014-15.

Under the direction of head coach Kirby Martin, the Huskies captured back-to-back District 6 Class AAA tournament titles as well as a D6 dual meet crown in 2013. Last season Mifflin County was 16-7 and finished third in the Mid-Penn Commonwealth.

A solid core group led by Hayden Hidlay (PIAA 6th at 138), state qualifiers Noah Stewart and Trey Hartsock, as well as regional qualifiers Noah Meyers, Isaac Underhill and Brandon Wilson has Martin feeling very confident about the squads potential.

“The attitude they bring every day to practice is contagious,” Martin said. “That’s something we just want to rub off on the entire team. The goal is to get each individual on the team working up to their standards and keep pushing everybody to get in better shape, develop better technique and get tougher mentally. That’s what I am looking for this season. My goal is to win more than we did last year. If we do that, the other goals will take care of themselves.”

Throw in a solid group of junior high grapplers led by Trent Hidlay, a PJW runner up last season, and it’s easy to see that Mifflin County will be a threat in districts, regionals and the Mid-Penn Commonwealth.

Let’s break down what I feel will happen in District 6 AAA and the Mid-Penn Commonwealth this season.

District 6 AAA

There’s only one team capable of hanging with the Huskies in 2014-15 and we all know who it is – Central Mountain. What a surprise.

The Wildcats return 12 starters from last year with state qualifiers Gavin Caprio and Demetri Probst leading the charge. Central Mountain also has back regional qualifiers Geo Barzona, Keenan Bottorf, Bryce Hanley, Loc Long, Isaac Porter and Emery Watson.

Make no mistake, the other six teams in District 6 have solid kids but for the fourth consecutive year, Mifflin County and Central Mountain will duke it out for the district crown.

The 0nly question to answer is  who will come out on top?

Mid-Penn Commonwealth

The always tough Mid-Penn Conference finds the Huskies in the top half of the Commonwealth division. Cumberland Valley is clearly the odds on favorite and rightly so.

The Eagles return nine starters with PIAA third-place finisher Patrick Duggan the mainstay for CV. State qualifiers Will Kaldes and Jackson Stanford return to a deep team also featuring regional qualifiers Trenton Cook, Felix Belga, Wyatt Long and Carl Reichert.

Former Mifflin County resident Quentin Milliken, along with Francis Duggan and Anthony Zaitsev give Cumberland Valley a trio of the top freshmen in the state. The strong just keep getting stronger.

The second tier of the Commonwealth consists of three teams – Mifflin County, Central Dauphin and Chambersburg.

The Rams are s0lid but not as dominate as they once were. State placewinners Tyshawn White (3rd at 113) and Zach Elvin (4th at 132) return. Jake Cherry, Mitch Pleskonko and Eli Robinson were regional qualifers.

Chambersburg has a solid group of eight starters back led by state qualifiers Garrett Kyner and David Rump.

Here are my predictions for the Mid-Penn Commonwealth in 2014-15:

1. Cumberland Valley
2. Mifflin County
3. Central Dauphin
4. Chambersburg
5. State College
6. Carlisle
7. CD East
8. Harrisburg

 Ephrata Duals

The Huskies kick off the season at the Ephrata Duals and once again the main competition for Mifflin County will come in the form of Downingtown East.

The Cougars beat the Huskies the last two years in Ephrata, winning the duals both years. Eight starters return, led by state qualifier Wade Cummings, so Downingtown East once again will be tough to defeat.

Biglerville, Daniel Boone, Ephrata, Garden Spot, Hempfield (D3), Lebanon, Reading and Columbia will be there, but the title should come down to the Cougars and Huskies.

Six state qualifiers will be in action at Ephrata – Hayden Hidlay (the only one to earn a medal in the group), Hartsock, Stewart, Cummings, Scott Cooper of Biglerville and Will Finkey of Garden Spot.

Another wrestling season begins. Isn’t it the best time of the year?

Category: Carson's Corner

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