Powerade finals

Team Results
1. Central Dauphin 2. Colonial Forge, Va. 198. 3. Shasy Side Academy 157. 4. Christiansburg 146. 5. Connellsville 144. 6. Burrell 142, 7. Hempfield 136, 8. Parkersburg 134, 9. Canon-McMillan 132, 10. Penn-Trafford 107.
Area Teams
29. Waynesburg 61, 32. Burgettstown 57, 35. McGuffey 56., 38. Trinity 43, 39. West Greene 38, 40. Chartiers-Houston 37

Individual Results
103–Nico Megaludis, Franklin Regional, dec. Devin Carter, Christiansburg, Va., 6-3
112–Shane Young, Penn-Trafford, pinned Simon Rice, Central Dauphin, 4:23
119–Nico Cortese, Shady Side Academy, dec. Michael Garofalo, Colonial Forge, Va., 6-5
125–Dane Johnson, Shady Side Academy, dec. Ian Squires, Colonial Forge, 5-4
130–Josh Kindig, Blue Mountain, dec. Chad Frankhouser, Indian Valley, 7-2
135–Colin Johnston, Canon-McMillan, dec. Shane Welsh, Burrell, 5-2
140–Marshall Peppelman, Central Dauphin, dec. Jordan Shields, Burrell, 6-3
145–Walter Peppelman, Central Dauphin, dec. Dominick Demor, South Side Beaver, 9-0
152–Sam Rakes, Christiansburg, dec. Donnie Tasser, Belle Vernon, 3-2
160–Steve Bosak, State College, dec. Josh Condon, Harrison, Ga., 3-0
171–Lance Bryson, Albert Gallatin, dec. Peter Huntley, Colonial Forge, Va., 9-4
189–Max Huntley, Colonial Forge, Va., dec. Andy Thomas, Parkersburg, W.Va., 5-1
215–Matt Lindamood, Parkersburg, W.Va., dec. Glenn Carson, Southern Regional, N.J., 6-4 OT
Hvy–Nick Cook, Fauquier, Va., dec. Paul Snyder, Mt. Pleasant, 3-1 OT
Outstanding Wrestler – Colin Johnston, Canon-McMillan


Powerade semifinals

103 – Devin Carter, Christiansburg dec. Geoff Alexander, Shady Side Academy, 4-0; Nico Megaludis, Franklin Regional dec. Clayton Youtz, Central Dauphin, 6-3
112 – Shane Young, Penn Trafford dec. Frank Goodwin, Mt St. Joseph, 4-2 OT; Simon Rice, Central Dauphin dec. Mitchell Port, Bellefonte, 2-0
119 – Nico Cortese, Hempfield dec. Joe Lascari, North Star, 3-1; Michael Garofalo, Colonial Forge dec. Nathan Pennesi, Latrobe, 11-4
125 – Dane Johnson, Shady Side Academy dec. Travis Shaffer, Derry, 6-4; Ian Squires, Colonial Forge - VA dec. Patrick Wieger, Central Dauphin, 3-2
130 – Josh Kindig, Blue Mountain dec. Kenny Stank, Central Dauphin, 10-9; Chad Frankhouser, Indian Valley dec. Joe Pantaleo, Colonial Forge, 7-2
135 – Colin Johnston, Canon McMillan tech. fall over Ryan Medved, Harrison, 5:15 17-1; Shane Welsh, Burrell DEC Cort Choate, Blue Mountain, 1-0
140 – Marshall Peppelman, Central Dauphin maj. dec. Alex Medved, Harrison, 11-0; Jordan Shields, Burrell dec. Brandon Wilson, Parkersburg, 1-0
145 – Walter Peppelman, Central Dauphin maj. dec. Shane Alterio, Bellefonte, 14-0; Dominick Demor, South Side Beaver dec. Craig Chelednik, Hempfield, 2-1
152 – Sam Rakes, Christiansburg dec. Chris Servian, Pleasant Valley, 10-3; Donnie Tasser, Belle Vernon dec. Matthew Cunningham, Shady Side Academy, 3-1
160 – Josh Condon, Harrison dec. Jake Kemerer, Hempfield, 1-0; Steve Bosak, State College dec. Tony Dallago, Central Dauphin, 5-1
171 – Lance Bryson, Albert Gallatin dec. Kurt Brendel, Shady Side Academy, 5-1; Peter Huntley, Colonial Forge dec . Tom Heckman, Cedar Cliff, 11-8
189 – Andy Thomas, Parkersburg dec. Keith Dickey, Cedar Cliff, 3-2; Max Huntley, Colonial Forge dec. Matt Wilps, Chartiers Valley, 5-2
215 – Glenn Carson, Southern Regional dec. Dan Conley, Burgettstown, 5-1; Matt Lindamood, Parkersburg dec. Dan Utchel, Chartiers Valley, 3-1
285 – Paul Snyder, Mt. Pleasant dec. Sam Brownlee, Canon McMillan, 5-3; Nick Cook, Fauquier maj. dec. Justin Haines, Connellsville, 10-1

Conley's win

One of the better bouts to watch on the first day of the Powerade tournament came when most had already left the building. Dan Conley of Burgettstown and Felton Banks of Colonial Forge got into a knock-down, drag-out quarterfinals battle that went the distance. Conley won the match with a reversal in the final overtime. But the two put on quite a show in this high-energy bout. Not only was the battle fierce but the scoring table took the brunt of most of it. Twice it was knocked over as the wrestlers rolled out of bounds, sending people scurrying and papers, pencils and whatnot flying into the air. To its credit, the clock equipment survived, and so did everyone near it. Banks appeared the only one to leave unhappy.

Prelude to disappointment

If the first day of the Powerade Wrestling Tournament showed area fans anything, it's that wrestling in the two counties is in a down cycle. Only three area wrestlers made it to the semifinals, stunning considering that Trinity, McGuffey and Waynesburg had none. It's easy to take success for granted from the stands and you miss it that much more when it doesn't happen in a tournament like this. I agree with Trinity coach Jeff Bricker that these things go in cycles but it's tough when the area is in a cycle where the wheels have fallen off. It doesn't make one optimistic about the postseason.



Here is the link to all the information you will need for the Powerade Christmas Wrestling Tournament, which begins Friday.



News on Courts

Kenny Courts has a knee injury that might wipe out his freshman season at Central Dauphin. Here is the link.



Herpes information

Here is a link to information on mat herpes.


A matchup lost

One of the many subplots to the Powerade Christmas Wrestling Tournament disappeared this week when it was learned that Kenny Courts, a freshman from Central Dauphin, tore his miniscus in his knee while capturing the 135-pound title in the Beast of the East Tournament. Courts was considered a rising star in the sport and would have been in the same weight class for Powerade as Canon-McMillan's Colin Johnston, who has finished first and second in the last two PIAA Championships. Courts will miss at least a month and probably more because of the injury.


Everyone, take a deep breath

Since the first report of an outbreak of "Mat Herpes," rumors have been flying through the WPIAL at an unprecedented pace. There have been rumors (false) that the PIAA is shutting wrestling down for two weeks. There were also rumors (false) that the WPIAL will be shutting wrestling down for two weeks. Everytime a school postpones a dual meet, rumors swirl that it's "Mat Herpes" and all that does is create fear and prompt kids to quit wrestling.

Look, if you want to protect yourself or son or daughter from any infection, then read up on the subject. Knowledge is the best way to fight any type of disease. Something as simple as making sure you shower after a competition can keep you relatively safe from skin infections. But you would be surprised at how many wrestlers do not have good hygiene.

Stop listening to rumors and use your common sense to keep yourself safe.


Another outbreak

South Park had to cancel its dual meet against Washington Wednesday night and shut down the wrestling program after an outbreak of "Mat Herpes." Connellsville, Pine-Richland and two other schools that have not been identified have had problems with it this season. It's not about to go away. The big fear in wrestling circles is that an outbreak might hit a program at the end of the season or during the postseason. There would be little, if anything, the WPIAL or PIAA could do if that happens.


Watson's fine

Burgettstown got a boost from the return to strength of Ryan Watson. The 189-pounder missed nearly all last season with a series of shoulder problems. But Wednesday night against West Greene, Watson looked strong and overpowering. That's good news for the Blue Devils, who appear headed for another section title.


For a brief time, South Fayette and Fort Cherry considered a co-op program that would have sent South Fayette wrestlers to Fort Cherry and make the team Class AAA. Fort Cherry OK'd the measure at a school board meeting two weeks ago but South Fayette turned it down. The SF school board wants to start its own program, but there are some money concerns in the district that might not make that happen.

Co-ops can be a good way to keep a sport alive without the burden of cost. But there can be drawbacks. Athletes who compete at neighboring schools could feel a loss of identity with their own school and there can be border rivalries. Imagine Washington and Trinity deciding on a football co-op. With fewer athletes and rising costs, co-ops are becoming more popular.

South Fayette might have made a stand against a co-op with Fort Cherry but that was the easy part. Now, it must find a way to establish a wrestling program that has been in hibernation.


It's an old problem but it seems to be circulating in better company these days. Forfeits in wrestling, especially Class AA, have been a problem for this area. With the number of students declining and the number of weight classes rising over the last decade, coaches are finding it harder and harder to fill a full lineup.

Tuesday's wrestling match between South Side Beaver and Fort Cherry highlighted the problem. Fort Cherry forfeited four weight classes and SSB one in the Rams 43-35 victory. The dual meet lasted just over an hour and the crowd was small. Fort Cherry head coach Rick Chaussard said he hadn't seen this many forfeits at Fort Cherry since he took over the program 11 years ago.

That's not a good sign.



Wrestling has popped into the papers for some unusual reasons. Mat Herpes has forced Connellsville and Pine-Richland to suspend matched because of an outbreak of "Mat Herpes." Skin infections have always been a worry in the sport and this is not the first time that this has happened. I recall Trinity and McGuffey cancelling two dual meets because of it.

One of the biggest problems in fighting this is that wrestlers are sometimes stubborn about their personal hygiene. Keeping yourself and your clothes clean are tantamount to avoinding an outbreak.

It's not just wrestling's problem but a problem that exists in all high school sports. Schools spend a lot of money on sanitizing their locker rooms and equipment but if the athletes don't have good habits, something like this is bound to happen.


Great source of info

If you want a thorough and informative wrestling handbook for the season, then you need to purchase Ken Wunderley's 2006-07 Recap. The price is reasonable and the book is packed with statistical information from last season. It includes the performance of each wrestler who competed in the WPIAL last season, his record, where he placed in the postseason and career record.

The book also has last year's standings, a breakdown of every weight class in Triple-A and Double-A and the results of the team tournaments.

The cost is $20, plus $2 for shipping and handling. Send checks Ken Wunderley, P.O. Box 726, McKeesport, Pa. 15134

As some of you know, Ken has worked part-time for this newspaper covering wrestling and has been involved in the sport for decades. It's the one book to have if you're looking for a complete guide for the season. There is one on my desk at work.

A good tournament

If you want to get an early peak at some of the Class AA talent in the area and WPIAL, then make sure you make it to Chartiers-Houston High School this weekend for the 13th annual invitational. Avella, Bentworth, Beth-Center, Charleroi, Chartiers-Houston, Fort Cherry, and Jeff-Morgan will be competing from the area.

But there are other schools, including Shady Side Academy and South Side Beaver, that are sure to have strong seasons. They are worth getting a look at early.

Frank Vulcano Jr., is the tournament director so you know it will be well-run and very organized.

Welcome back

I know I've gotten a late start to the wrestling blog but then I normally do. This blog is going to be a little different this year. I am going to post some polls, get more opinions from you and lead you to as many good wrestling stories as I can find around the state.

At first blush, I don't think this season looks promising for this area, but it's still hard to tell. The number of returning state placewinners is low and some teams, probably Trinity and McGuffey, will struggle while the rebuilding process takes place.

As always, I welcome your comments and criticism as long as they are in good taste.

Now it's time to get to work.