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Knights defeat Tide
Friday, February 1, 2013
By Rich Murawski Assistant Sports Editor
CURWENSVILLE - The Curwensville wrestling team jumped out to an early 24-9 lead on visiting Mo Valley Thursday night at Patton Hall, getting big wins at 145 and 182 along the way.
But the Black Knights reeled off falls in five of the final six bouts to storm back for a 45-30 win.
Despite the nice comeback, Mo Valley head coach Justin Fye wasn't happy with how some of the dual meet unfolded.
"We definitely came out flat," he said. "I told them before the match, ‘you can't sit and joke around and think you're going to have an easy match.'
"It doesn't matter who you're wrestling. One move can end a match real quick. When you stop wrestling, bad things happen. Some of those matches we lost tonight, we stopped wrestling and they took us down or put us on our back."
The Black Knights opened the night with a win at 132, as sophomore Ryan Thomas held off Brandon Sass, 4-2, He scored a takedown in the first and rode out Sass in the second, but was unable to turn him.
After giving up an escape to Thomas to start the third, Sass notched a takedown to get within a point and let Thomas up, hoping to secure another before time ran out. But Thomas thwarted his attempt and held on for a decision in a bout that Golden Tide head coach Duane Wriglesworth was very pleased with.
"We were thinking we might give up six because sometimes Sass is hot and cold," Wriglesworth said. "So I was very happy with Sass' stick-with-it-ness and his performance, especially on his feet."
Thomas beat Sass by 12-1 major decision on the opening weekend of the season.
The Tide picked up the first of three forfeit wins at 138 as Shawn Ebersole had his hand raised to put the hosts on top, 6-3.
Curwensville's Trey McKenzie picked up a 10-6 decision at 145 in a bout that Wriglesworth was hoping to get.
McKenzie led 2-0 after one period, but got put on his back for three nearfall points by a Sam Ohler power half early in the second. McKenzie recovered to reverse Ohler and score two back points of his own to take a 6-3 lead heading into the third.
There, McKenzie added two sets of nearfall points to take a 10-3 advantage before an Ohler escape and late takedown tightened the gap.
"That was the key matchup we wanted," Wriglesworth said. "We felt we could win that. McKenzie was a little under the weather and I thought he pulled through for us."
Dakota Royer took a forfeit win at 152 to give Curwensville a 15-3 lead before Black Knight Cody Hamilton halted some of the Tide momentum with a second-period pin of Jake Stiles at 160.
Leading 2-0 after one, Hamilton reversed and pancaked Stiles before showing him the lights at 2:28.
Curwensville got those points right back at 170 thanks to another forfeit. Nate Wriglesworth accepted that for the Tide to give them a 21-9 advantage.
The hosts then took all the momentum at 182 when Austin Pollick scored a pair of back points at the buzzer to upend Black Knight Kent Stewart, 6-4.
Stewart looked to be in control of the bout on his feet after earning takedowns in each of the first two periods for a 4-2 lead.
But Pollick took advantage of Stewart taking down in the third, turning him twice, including getting the two-count just before the final buzzer to finish off his comeback win.
"We were in control on our feet, but we got on bottom and stopped moving," Fye said. "And Pollick stayed in good position. He didn't panic on top at all. There were a couple times where we almost got a reversal, but (Pollick) didn't panic. He just outwrestled us there.
"Pollick had an outstanding match," Wriglesworth said. "He's giving up 20 pounds there. To wrestle a kid that outsizes you that much and come from behind and turn the kid twice to win the match ... I'm really, really happy. That was a real leadership match."
But after that bout, the Black Knights came roaring back.
James Stodart began the comeback with a forfeit win at 195 before Jake Ludwig's 65-second fall at 220 started a run of three pins for Mo Valley.
Ludwig took down and let up A.J. Bloom twice before a third takedown led to a pancake and a fall.
Jack Bunnell gave the Knights their first lead since the first bout, scoring a 46-second fall over Ricky Magnuson at heavyweight.
Bunnell surprised Magnuson with a jap-whizzer, sending him to the mat and recording the pin to give Mo Valley a 27-24 lead.
"When you're a heavyweight and you hit that, and you get the other heavyweight's hips on the mat, you can pin him because it's hard for him to get his hips off the mat," Fye said. "Jack kept the bottom arm after he hit the whizzer and just went for the fall. He went out and went after it."
"We were hoping to do better there," Wriglesworth said. "I definitely didn't expect to get pinned and thought we had a shot of winning. But that was a tossup match. That and 106 were tossups."
The tossup at 106 went the Black Knight's way as well as Nick Krupa decked Jason Koptchak in 3:52 after each wrestler nearly picked up falls earlier.
Krupa hit a headlock and had Koptchak in all kinds of trouble early in the first before the referee had to stop the bout due to blood time for the Tide matman.
Krupa was awarded four back points and was staked to a 6-0 lead.
But Koptchak took up to start the second and turned Krupa to his back twice for two back points each time.
A third attempt to turn Krupa turned disastrous for Koptchak when the Black Knight reversed him to his back and pinned him. That gave Mo Valley its biggest lead to that point, 33-24.
"I was very pleased with how some of the guys wrestled," Fye said. "Bunnell went out and went after a pin. Nick Krupa came back strong for the team. He got himself in a couple bad positions, but he was going after the fall the whole time, and he wrestled tough."
Curwensville broke up the Mo Valley run with a fall at 113 as Sam Bressler stopped Joey Vanish in 1:10.
But Mo Valley's Dylan Fudalski put the match out of reach at 120 when he won by fall in overtime over Tyler Mays.
Mays took an early lead, using a headlock for a takedown.
Fudalski escaped and took Mays down but was reversed almost immediately in a scramble at the edge of the mat.
Leading 4-3 after one period, Mays chose down to start the second, but was unable to break free of Fudalski's grasp. The Knight 120-pounder tried to turn Mays with a series of pinning combinations, but the bout went into the third still 4-3.
It looked like Mays was going to return the favor in the third, but Fudalski was able to score a reversal with under 30 seconds left to go. But he got too aggressive trying to turn Mays and gave up the bout-tying penalty point due to a full nelson.
It didn't take long for Fudalski to atone for his mistake as he took Mays to his back and finished him off 38 seconds into the overtime.
"That was a good match. It was definitely exciting," Wriglesworth said. "Hat's off to Mo Valley."
"That's probably the best he's wrestled since around Christmas," Fye said of Fudalski. "He's wrestled some tough kids and he's cutting weight. But we know how good he can be. He outconditioned his kid. He wrestled strong for seven minutes. He wrestled tough the whole time, and it was nice to see that."
Mo Valley's Bryce Bloom finished off the meet quickly, needing just 21 seconds to hook up a seat belt and pin Aryan Shearer.
"We were hoping it would be closer than it was," Wriglesworth said. "We did get the draw that we wanted, but we were hoping it would be closer. Just a couple toss-up matches we didn't get. Give Mo Valley credit. They came ready to wrestle. They had a couple kids that went out and got some toss-up matches for them.
"I'm torn. I'm upset that we didn't win some matches, but I'm very happy about some of the performances we did get."
Curwensville dipped to 6-11 with the loss and hosts Clarion Thursday.
Mo Valley improved to 10-7 and hosts Claysburg-Kimmel Tuesday evening.
"I thought we wrestled alright," Fye said. "We definitely didn't wrestle our best. To have an off night and still win is big. But I can't complain about some of the kids that went out to wrestle. Some of them ... we'll talk about it and have them ready for the next match."

Moshannon Valley 45, Curwensville 30
132-Ryan Thomas, MV, dec. Brandon Sass, C, 4-2. (3-0).
138-Shawn Ebersole, C, won by forfeit. (3-6).
145-Trey McKenzie, C, dec. Sam Ohler, MV, 10-6. (3-9).
152-Dakota Royer, C, won by forfeit. (3-15).
160-Cody Hamilton, MV, pinned Jake Stiles, C, 2:28. (9-15).
170-Nathan Wriglesworth, C, won by forfeit. (9-21).
182-Austin Pollick, C, dec. Kent Stewart, MV, 6-4. (9-24).
195-James Stodart, MV, won by forfeit. (15-24).
220-Jake Ludwig, MV, pinned A.J. Bloom, C, 1:05. (21-24).
285-Jack Bunnell, MV, pinned Ricky Magnuson, C, 0:46. (27-24).
106-Nick Krupa, MV, pinned Jason Koptchak, C, 3:52. (33-24).
113-Sam Bressler, C, pinned Joey Vanish, MV, 1:10. (33-30).
120-Dylan Fudalski, MV, pinned Tyler Mays, C, 6:38 OT. (39-30).
126-Bryce Bloom, MV, pinned Aryan Shearer, C, 0:21. (45-30).


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