Though Tunkhannock wrestling’s team season ended, the Tigers could at least leave everything out on the mat.
That wasn’t quite the case in Thursday’s first-round loss to Brookville, when forfeits kept a number of Tigers from gaining useful reps on the state stage.
While there were a few bright spots, Tunkhannock ultimately dropped its first-round matchup to Brookville in the PIAA Team Wrestling Championships, 42-33, on Thursday afternoon in Hershey.
Tunkhannock fell into the Class 2A consolation bracket of the double-elimination tournament.
Against Brookville, Luke Carpenter (170 pounds) picked up a decision, and Jeffrey Meader (182) won by default to bring the Tigers to a 12-9 deficit through four weight classes.
But the Raiders went on six-bout, 30-point run from there, including a pin by defending state champion Colby Whitehill (285).
Brookville recorded five total pins by the time it pulled ahead to a 42-9 lead. With the victory clinched at that point, the Raiders forfeited the four remaining weight classes.
Siegel said he was told the decision was made to avoid injuries or unsportsmanlike conduct penalties.
In addition to its two contested wins, Siegel said other young wrestlers weren’t far from success in their state debuts.
Sophomore Owen Woods (106) was tied through two periods of a 6-5 loss to Cayden Walter, who has a one-point loss to a former state champion on his own resume this season. Sophomore Frankie Scranta (195) led after two periods of a 13-11 loss, and Siegel said junior Jhamal Zacharias (285) also wrestled tough against Whitehill.
“We had some guys that could’ve got some wins today. Not forfeit wins, but wins,” Siegel said. “Owen was right in the heat of the battle with a kid that’s very good. ... It came right down to the end, just got out of position. But we were very excited with his effort.”
But nearly a full lineup got on the mat for Tunkhannock on Friday morning, when the District 2 champions fell to Corry, 46-20, and were eliminated from the PIAA Team Wrestling Championships in Hershey.
“It’s tremendous experience for these kids,” Tunkhannock coach Gary Siegel said in a phone interview. “I can see how coaches want to get their teams down here.”
The Tigers could have seen the same situation play out in their first-round consolation match. Both matches started at 152 pounds.
Corry, District 10’s runner-up, won the first eight bouts to take a commanding 37-0 lead before Tunkhannock’s strong lower weights could make an impact. But the Beavers wrestled all the way through the match, which allowed all four Tigers who’d won by forfeit the day before actually compete on the Giant Center’s floor.
Among them, David Evans (126 pounds) scored a tech fall, while Ethan Munley (138) and Gavin D’Amato (145) pinned their opponents. Owen Woods (113) also picked up a decision earlier to help the Tigers hold an edge over the final six weight classes.
“On paper, we think we had it at about a two-point underdog, but it didn’t turn out that way,” Siegel said. “But the kids still gave the great effort we were looking for. Just some matches didn’t go the way we wanted.”
The Tigers shift their focus to the individual postseason but only after they outlasted the rest of the Wyoming Valley Conference’s teams.
They went a perfect 3-0 in Division 2 play and outscored three opponents 168-52 on the way to the District 2 team championship. It was a first for all members of the team, which had last won district duals gold in 2016.
“The guys really performed and wanted to win that district team title. That’s what I’m going to take away,” Siegel said. “They worked and they brought that one home.”
Corry fell in its next match Friday afternoon to Burrell, 38-23.
Tunkhannock was back on the mat last night in a home match against Abington Heights, and will head to Dallas tomorrow night for action against the Mountaineers. Then the Tigers are home again on Friday, hosting West Scranton’s Invaders.
Brookville 42, Tunk. 33
152: Wyatt Kulik (B) pinned Alexzandre Pierce, 1:22. 160: Wyatt Griffin (B) pinned Sean Meder, 1:47. 170: Luke Carpenter (T) dec. Hayden Kramer, 5-3. 182: Jeffrey Meader (T) inj. def. Elliot Park, 0:54. 195: Cole LaBenne (B) dec. Frankie Scranta, 13-11. 220: Nathan Taylor (B) pinned Nick Marabell, 1:25. 285: Colby Whitehill (B) pinned Jhamal Zacharias, 2:50. 106: Cayden Walter (B) dec. Owen Woods, 6-5. 113: Owen Reinsel (B) pinned Jeb Stephens, 0:22. 120: Brayden Kunselman (B) by forfeit. 126: Dave Evans (T) by forfeit. 132: Matt Rosentel (T) by forfeit. 138: Ethan Munley (T) by forfeit. 145: Gavin D’Amato (T) by forfeit.
Tunk. 20, Corry 46
152: Nick Lapinski (C) maj. dec. Alex Pierce, 11-2. 160: Dylan Gourley (C) pinned Sean Meader, 2:21. 170: Austin Sacchetti (C) dec. Luke Carpenter, 7-4. 182: Matt Petrilla (C) pinned Tyrese Konen, 1:43. 195: Hayden Linkerhof (C) pinned Frankie Scranta. 220: Shawn Proctor (C) dec. Nick Marabell, 8-2. 285: Xavier Reyda (C) dec. Jhamal Zacharias, 5-0. 106: Lucas Munsee (C) won by forfeit. 113: Owen Woods (T) dec. Kayden Reyda, 4-0. 120: Damion Kinney (C) won by forfeit. 126: David Evans (T) tech fall Derek Hurd, 17-2 (2:44). 132:
Lucas Peterson (C) dec. Matt Rosentel, 4-2.
138: Ethan Munley (T) pinned Chris Almeda, 0:50. 145:
Gavin D’Amato (T) pinned Hunter