MERCER COUNTY AREA —
The Reynolds and Greenville wrestling teams each bring all 14 wrestlers into the District 10 Class AA Championships this weekend at Sharon High School and will battle it out with Fort LeBoeuf for the team title.
Reynolds, which defeated both Greenville and LeBoeuf in duals this season, is the favorite to cop its 20th team crown since team points were first counted in 1981. But a lot of things can happen with the number of talented matmen who will compete for one of six places to advance to next weekend’s regional tourney.
Saegertown’s Tyler Vath (132) goes for his third D-10 crown, while seeking their second straight are: Michael Bartolo (126) and Levi Stoyer (145) of Reynolds; Dylan Reynolds (182) of Saegertown; Adam Fish (138) of Seneca. Fort LeBoeuf’s George McGuire (138) won in 2012.
The tournament opens with preliminary round at 5:15 p.m. Friday. On Saturday, the morning session starts at 9 a.m. The consy finals for third and fifth are set for 3 p.m., followed by the parade of champions and announcements at 4:45 p.m. The finals will tentatively begin at 5:30.
Following is a look at the tournament by weight class:
106 - Reynolds freshman Gage Bayless (33-4) holds the role of favorite in a group of talented young wrestlers. He’ll probably face Greenville’s Michael Lineman (34-4) or Corry’s Nate Munsee (22-5) in the finals.
113 - Raider sophomore Seth Hogue (28-7) lost in the finals last year to eventual state champ Devin Brown of Saegertown, but is top pick to move up one slot on the medal stand. He’ll probaby face Jamestown’s Faris Messai (24-4) in the semis, then could see a rematch of the Section 2 finals with Hickory junior Justin Walter (24-5).
120 - Matt Wheeler (29-2) was runner-up to Vath at this weight last year, but returns as a slight favorite in 2014. He’ll probably see Saegertown’s Bingbong Elizon in the semis then face Fort LeBoeuf’s Jarrette Carter in the finals. Reynolds’ Chaise Hauck at Greenville’s Joey Safner are darkhorses here to pull an upset.
126 - The finals could be a rematch of the Section 2 title tilt, with defending D-10 champ Bartolo (28-8) taking on Sharon’s Austin Alfreno (21-7). Bartolo will probably tangle with LeBoeuf’s Tyler Kuzma in the semis, while Alfreno could face Commodore Perry freshman John Mott, the Sec. 3 champ.
132 - Two-time champ Vath (28-6) eyes a third crown in a tough weight class. Vath will probably face either Luke Walter (31-3) of Grove City or Conneaut Area’s Kyle Lukowich (26-5) in the finals. Reynolds’ Joel Leise and Greenville’s Blake Reynolds are also wrestling well at tournament time.
138 - Fort LeBoeuf senior McGuire (32-4) is top choice to duplicate his 2012 championship and will probably meet Greenville freshman ace Gavin Wilkerson (35-6) in the semis. Defending champion Fish (25-5) is on the other side of the bracket and will probably see Sharon’s Section 2 champ Troy Hejazi in the quarterfinals. Seneca’s Nick Monico is also a factor on that side of the brackets.
145 - Reynolds senior Stoyer (24-3), a state place-winner, seeks his second D-10 crown and should roll to the finals for a probable clash with Conneaut Area’s Taylor Ellis (26-4) or Saegertown’s Matt Humes (25-12).
152 - Raider Mason McCollum (31-7) heads the field here and should see LeBoeuf’s Brad Malinowski in the semis. The two have split a pair of meetings this campaign. Cochranton’s Robert Boozer (30-4) is expected to reach the finals on the other side of the bracket.
160 - Greenville sophomore Gage Gladysz (35-2) has had an outstanding season and it should continue here with a D-10 crown. However, he’ll have to get by Reynolds’ Kegan Miller in the semis, while Harbor Creek’s Matt Newara (28-4), Sharon’s Cory Buchanan (25-6) and Grove City’s Kenny Bable (17-8) will battle it out on the other side of the bracket.
170 - Look for a rematch of the Section 2 finals here between champ Dakota Geer (29-1) of Franklin and Reynolds’ Mike Millero (35-6). Geer won 3-2 with an escape in the ultimate tie breaker session. North East’s Jordan Bryan (16-4) will look for an upset against Millero in the semis, while Geer will have to get past Greenville’s Zach Miller (32-5).
182 - Reynolds will be in the finals here in more ways than one. A semifinals match looms between Saegertown’s Dylan Reynolds (31-4) and Greenville’s Justin Reynolds (32-5), while the other side of the bracket could see Austin Moffett (15-5) of team Reynolds make the finals. Moffett will probably see Jamestown’s Mohammed Messai or Sharon’s Beau Dignall in the semis.
195 - This weight class is up for grabs, although Fort LeBoeuf’s Garrett Reinwald (33-7) is probably the slight favorite to meet Sharpsville’s Chris Mueller (26-7) in the semis . On the other side of the bracket, Lakeview’s Marquis Spence (23-5) and Maplewood’s Isaiah Stearns will probably meet in the semis.
220 - North East’s Andrew Phelps (23-3) might be favored, but he’ll have to get past Reynolds’ Cole Rickert (23-6) who has been wrestling at a very high level since the state duals where Reynolds finished as runner-up as a team. Jamestown’s Jason Shappee (23-8) could reach the finals from the other side of the bracket, but Seneca’s Tory Pusateri and Lakeview’s Andrew Clayton could play a role.
285 - Lakeview’s Sam Breese may have won the state championships last year, but the D-10 title eluded him as he finished third. He’s expected to win it all this year and will probably see a Section 2 finals rematch with Reynolds’ Gene Ringer.