3 county wrestlers reach PIAA quarterfinals
HERSHEY - After 33 wins without facing a whole lot of stiff competition this season, Shippensburg's Cameron Tinner had a feeling he'd find some at Giant Center on Thursday evening.
Boy, did he ever.
But the Greyhound junior 220-pounder still managed to hang on for a victory and become one of three Franklin County wrestlers to advance to the quarterfinal round of the PIAA Class AAA Wrestling Championships.
He will join Ship teammate Chandler Olson (126) and Chambersburg's Drew Peck (182) in the quarterfinal round, which begins at 2:15 Friday afternoon. The Trojans' Garrett Kyner is still alive in the consolation bracket at 138.
"I think I needed that," Tinner said after barely holding off Nathan Barcaskey of Moon in the first round, 9-7. "I knew I wasn't going to blow through everybody up here."
Certainly not Barcaskey, who at around 6-foot-4, was "about a head taller than anybody I've wrestled this year," Tinner said.
Tinner's takedown produced the only points of the first period and he notched a tilt to make it 4-0. Early in the third, Barcaskey let Tinner up to make it 6-2, but then he started really attacking Tinner.
That earned him two takedowns (which equaled the total Tinner had allowed this year), the last with 23 seconds left and Tinner working with a stalling warning. But Tinner was able to stave off a final takedown shot to win.
"That kid is good, but I slowed down in the third period," Tinner said. "I'll have to better on my feet."
Ship coach Tony Yaniello said, "Cam is a smart kid and when he was up three or four points in the third period, he tried to slow the match down and just ride the storm out. But that kid was good, and I don't think many kids have had good shots at Cam this year."
Olson, a PIAA veteran, had a difficult pairing in Pennridge's Kordell Rush. The match was scoreless after Olson rode Rush through the second period. Olson finally broke through for an escape with 38 seconds left, then added a late takedown for a 3-0 win.
“Every match is a grind and I knew this would be a tough one," Olson said. "You know you’re going to have close matches and you don’t expect to score a lot of points. So you just stay in position and try to not let him score on you.”
Olson nearly had a takedown in the first period, but Rush fended him off.
“I almost had the takedown a couple of times, but he scrambled tough and fought it off,” Olson said.
The Trojans' Peck had a more stress-free match at 182, rolling up a 9-0 major decision over Cole Dixon of Dallas. He had a takedown and nearfall in the first period, an escape and takedown in the second and a tilt in the third.
"The first one's one of the hardest, because you're going to be a little nervous," Peck said. "I just wanted to get everything out of my system. Getting that first takedown is big because it puts points on the board and it gets into their head a little."
Trojan coach Matt Mentzer said, "He was dominate - he scored from his feet, on bottom and on top, and that's what we need."
Kyner had a brilliant start, catching Pennwood's Abraham Charles in a headlock and flattening him for a pin in 1:07 in a preliminary round bout.
"He had plenty of time and he was patient, and he finished it," Mentzer said.
In the first round, Kyner met up with Luke Pletcher of Latrobe, who is 40-1 and ranked No. 1 in the country at 138. Pletcher held a 7-1 lead in the second when Kyner escaped the then took Pletcher down. But Pletcher came right back with a takedown into a cradle for a pin in 3:24.
Mentzer said, "I told one of our coaches that they had better have gotten that takedown on tape, because that'll be a good memory. Garrett did not back down. I think two of his attacks were his best shots and he would have gotten a takedown on almost anybody else, but Pletcher turned them into takedowns himself. That kid's legit."
Chambersburg's Aaron Rump, bothered by a shoulder injury suffered two weeks ago at districts, was not able to score a single point in his two bouts. He lost 2-0 to Cary Palmer of Council Rock South and 1-0 to Lucas Miller of Boyertown and was eliminated.
"He just didn't have much strength," Mentzer said. "He got his arm trapped underneath in both matches and couldn't get out."
In the quarterfinals, Peck (35-2) will face Bayard Rustin's Csts Hatzipavlides (39-6), Tinner (34-0) takes on Evan Callahan of Freedom (28-4) and Olson (35-2) meets up with defending champion Luke Karam of Bethlehem Catholic (34-3), who beat Olson 4-2 in the semifinals last year.
Kyner (34-8) will wrestle Cumberland Valley's Will Kaldes (38-9) for the fourth time this year.
126: Cary Palmer (Council Rock South) d Aaron Rump (Chambersburg), 2-0. 138: Garrett Kyner (Chambersburg) p Abraham Charles (Pennwood), 1:07.
126: Chandler Olson (Shippensburg) d Kordell Rush (Pennridge), 3-0. 138: Luke Pletcher (Latrobe) p Kyner (Chambersburg), 3:24. 182: Drew Peck (Chambersburg) md Cole Dixon (Dallas), 9-0. 220: Cameron Tinner (Shippensburg) d Nathan Barcaskey (Moon), 9-7.
126: Lucas Miller (Boyertown) d Rump (Chambersburg), 1-0.