Team Tournament notes

Jefferson-Morgan's youth was exposed by Kittanning in the quarterfinals of the WPIAL Class AA Team Tournament. The Rockets have six freshmen and four sophomores on the roster and that inexperience was costly in a 34-32 loss. The Rockets gave up three pins and two major decisions and head coach Scott Rhodes took a big chunk of time after the match explaining how getting pinned was devastating to their chances. He's right. The good news is that the Rockets should be strong for years as the talent matures.

Canon-McMillan and Chartiers-Houston breezed through their two dual meets and each reached the semifinals. Strong would be the word used to describe the way the two teams wrestled. Both teams are one win away from qualifying for the PIAA Team Tournament. All finalists are in and the third-place team in Class AAA.

Here is a trivia question: Which team has been in every team tournament since the new format was adopted in 1979? (Answer at the end)

The upset of the round came in Waynesburg's 43-24 loss to Franklin Regional in the first round. At 119, freshman Tyler Smith decisioned Waynesburg's Derrick Nelson, 3-2. The two wrestlers met early in the season and Nelson won 5-3. Smith is 28-6 this season.

Ryan Dodd of Chartiers-Houston was back in the lineup for the first two rounds after fears that he might have mononucleosis were found to be unfounded. A healthy and well-rested Dodd had two pins for the Bucs.

Bentworth has counted on its strong lineup of middle and upper weights to win dual meets this season but the lightweights were a big reason why the Bearcats rolled over Burgettstown, 50-18. Jacob Rothka and Trevor Wood each had a pin for a dozen of those points. The run of Sam Lapcevic, Nick Smydo Francis Mizia, Dylan Demain and Gus Mizia makes the Bearcats tough to beat.

Gary Kiefer of Fort Cherry and Neal Rands of Ringgold have not participated in a postseason match. Kiefer has a shoulder injury from football that has not been right all season and Rands has a knee injury from football that he reaggravated in the Tri-County Wrestling Tournament.

Triva question answer: Connellsville has been in every team tournament event since the new format began in 1979.


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