Knights look to stay atop Con­ti­nen­tal

NP aims for 4th straight con­fer­ence ti­tle

The Reporter (Lansdale, PA) - - SPORTS - By Mike Cabrey [email protected]­tu­ry­media.com @mp­cabrey on Twit­ter

The North Penn wrestling team has ruled the Sub­ur­ban One League Con­ti­nen­tal Con­fer­ence the past three sea­sons. But this year’s SOL re­align­ment will make a four-peat an even tougher task for the Knights as two-time de­fend­ing SOL Amer­i­can champ Quak­er­town is back in the Con­ti­nen­tal.

“A team goal every year is to win our league cham­pi­onship,” North Penn coach Robert Shettsline said. “This won’t be easy es­pe­cially with Quak­er­town now back in our league. We also want to com­pete at dis­trict du­als and qual­ify mul­ti­ple wrestlers for the state cham­pi­onship tour­na­ment.”

North Penn has not dropped a con­fer­ence dual meet the past three sea­sons — a run of 19 straight wins — while Quak­er­town, who re has racked up 19 straight dual vic­to­ries since los­ing a Con­ti­nen­tal matchup with Pen­nridge in 2016. NP and the Pan­thers meet Jan. 16 at Quak­er­town.

The Knights have a new group of heavy­weights but are strong in the light and mid­dle weights, re­turn­ing Blooms­burg com­mit Patrick O’Neill, the se­nior tak­ing sev­enth at 160 pound in his first trip to the PIAA Cham­pi­onships last sea­son.

Soud­er­ton and Pen­nridge will see if they can push into the SOL

Con­ti­nen­tal ti­tle race. The In­di­ans re­turn a pair of state qual­i­fiers in se­niors Tyler Wil­liams — six­th­place in 132 at Her­shey — and Bruno Stolfi. The Rams grad­u­ated PIAA champ Josh Still­ings but does have state qual­i­fier Evan Wid­ing back in its lineup.

“Our league is al­ways tough es­pe­cially with Quak­er­town back in the Con­ti­nen­tal but we should be in the mix with ev­ery­one this sea­son,” Soud­er­ton coach Tris­tan Boyd said.

With Quak­er­town in the Con­ti­nen­tal, the Amer­i­can is left with a void at the top with Hat­boro-Hor­sham and Ply­mouth Whitemarsh — which fin­ished se­cond and third, re­spec­tively, in the con­fer­ence last sea­son — along with Wis­sahickon all have an eye on claim­ing the con­fer­ence ti­tle.

In the al­ways tough Pi­o­neer Ath­letic Con­fer­ence, Methac­ton will try to con­tend in the Lib­erty Di­vi­sion with a three wrestlers that reaches states last year — Tonee El­lis, Kibwe McNair and Ro­man Moser.

Ger­man­town Academy is set on build­ing off tak­ing 12th place at the 2018 Prep Na­tion­als that in­cluded a fourth-place fin­ish by ju­nior Christo­pher Kim at 106.

In the Philadel­phia Catholic League, Arch­bishop Wood has a solid re­turn­ing group while also ask­ing a few fresh­man to make an im­me­di­ate im­pact as the Vik­ings look to re­peat last year’s suc­cess af­ter claim­ing the league du­als crown and took first in the team stand­ings both the PCL and Dis­trict 12 Cham­pi­onships.

La Salle won just twice last sea­son but a deep Ex­plor­ers side is look­ing to bounce back un­der firstyear coach Ben­jamin. Court­ney.

Dis­trict 1 Post­sea­son Changes

The the path to Her­shey is a bit shorter as league tour­na­ments are no longer the first step in the Dis­trict 1 post­sea­son. In­stead, there will be four dis­trict Class 3A tour­na­ments — North at Pottstown, East at Quak­er­town, South at In­ter­boro, West at West Ch­ester Rustin — with the top four from each ad­vanc­ing to the South East Re­gional at Soud­er­ton.

The East field will con­sist of 16 Sub­ur­ban One teams. Soud­er­ton will be in the North tour­na­ment along with the 11 3A PAC pro­grams. Chel­tenham, PW, Up­per and Wis­sahickon will com­pete in the South field.

The SOL will still hold con­fer­ence cham­pi­onship meets, all three tak­ing place Jan. 26 — the Amer­i­can at Wis­sahickon, Con­ti­nen­tal at Cen­tral Bucks South and Na­tional at Tru­man.

Abing­ton Friends

Coach: Terry McGovern League: Friends Schools League. Last Sea­son: 6-8.

Key Losses: Syd­ney Tommy Yick.

Top Re­turn­ers:

Clay Lewis (Fr.).

Out­look: Cole Lewis, a Prep Na­tion­als qual­i­fier, and Clay Lewis, who qual­i­fied for the PAISAA tour­na­ment as an eighth grader, lead a young Kan­ga­roo side. “Team is very young and very green, this year is a re­build­ing year, lost a lot of good wrestlers from in­juries and other sit­u­a­tions at the be­gin­ning of the sea­son,” McGovern said. “We have a lot of re­ally tough tour­na­ments in­clud­ing Beast of the East on our sched­ule this year to get the guys a lot of ex­pe­ri­ence for the post sea­son. Dual tour­na­ments are go­ing to be hard to win this year with small num­bers.” Smith, Cole Lewis (Jr.),

Academy New Church

Coach: sea­son).

Last Sea­son: 8-12.

Key Losses: Gan­non Blair, Derek Cron­lund, Ethan Tim­bers.

Top Re­turn­ers: Joe Dy­bal­ski (Sr., 220), Win­ston Roth (Sr., 152), Jor­dan Wil­son (Jr., 138), Matt Thyge­son (Sr., 170), Sean McCurdy (Jr., 195).

Oth­ers to Watch: Ge­orge Boula­jeris (Jr., 132), Caden Si­mons (Jr., 285), Nick We­in­stein (Fr., 120). Out­look: “With a good nu­cleus of re­turn­ing wrestlers and a team of 30 par­tic­i­pants, ANC should fair very well in dual meets and look to chal­lenge for a Friends League

Eyvind

Boye­sen

(25th Soud­er­ton’s Tyler Wil­liams goes to work on Man­heim Cen­tral’s Zach Zeamer at last year’s PIAA Class AAA Cham­pi­onships.

Cham­pi­onship,” Boye­sen said. “Joe Dy­bal­ski, a Na­tional Prep Qual­i­fier last sea­son, should fair well and looks to com­pete again at the Na­tional Preps.”

Arch­bishop Wood

Coach: sea­son).

League: Philadel­phia League Blue Di­vi­sion.

Last Sea­son: 12-4

Key Losses: Tommy Hooven, Max Shaf­fer, Matt Palage, Stephen Veneziale.

Top Re­turn­ers: Kevin Baker (Jr., 120⁄126), Talon Pis­archuk (So., 145⁄152), Zac St. Thomas (Sr., 152⁄160), Billy Grace (Sr., 182⁄195), Liam Jones (170⁄182).

Oth­ers to Watch: David McDonough (Fr., 113), Con­nor Eck (So., 126⁄132), Nolan Cataldi (Fr., 145⁄152), Quinn Collins (Fr., 170⁄182).

Out­look: The Vik­ings are look­ing to re­peat the suc­cess of last sea­son’s squad — win­ning the PCL Du­als ti­tle, tak­ing first at both PCL and Dis­trict 12 Cham­pi­onships — with a side that has both youth and ex­pe­ri­ence. Ben­salem trans­fer Eck — who made the South East Re­gional last year — is ex­pected to an­chor the light weights, which may fea­ture three fresh­man at 106, 113 and 120. Wood’s strength in at the mid­dle weights with Pis­archuk, who qual­i­fied for the Cadet Greco-Ro­man Na­tion­als in the off­sea­son, and cap­tains St. Thomas, Grace and Jones — who all ad­vanced to North East Re­gion­als in 2018. Fresh­men Cataldi and Collins are also ex­pected to con­trib­ute in the mid­dle weights. Wood took a hit at the heavy­weights with Char­lie Mininger (195/220) and Joe Kelly (285) both out for the year with leg in­juries that oc­curred dur­ing the foot­ball sea­son.

Chris

Meis­ter

(fourth Catholic (3-0 di­vi­sion).

Cen­tral Bucks West

Coach: Steve Romes­burg sea­son).

League: SOL

Last Sea­son:

Key Losses: An­drew Soto, Spencer Pili­gian, Har­ri­son Radovich. Top Re­turn­ers: Chris Cle­land (So., 113), Ryan Hiber (Sr. 220), Jake Tosti (Sr. 120).

Oth­ers to Watch: Teague McCor­mack (Fr., 106), CJ Waller (Fr., 125), Carl DiGior­gio (Fr., 195).

Out­look: The young Bucks aren’t big in num­ber, but they do re­turn a pair of re­gional qual­i­fiers in Cle­land and Hieber while Tosti reached dis­tricts last year. CB West may still lack some num­bers, but all of its wrestlers will be ready to do bat­tle,” Romes­burg said. “With a young group and a team with a few va­can­cies, the team looks to gain valu­able ex­pe­ri­ence as the sea­son presses on. An­chored by two se­niors, Ryan Hieber (220 lbs.) and Jake Tosti (120 lbs.), the rest of the team will need to do their job and get a few pins along the way to help achieve a win.” Con­ti­nen­tal

(sev­enth Con­fer­ence. 3-7 (2-4 con­fer­ence).

Ger­man­town Academy

Coach: Solomon Fleck­man (third sea­son).

League: In­ter-Aca­demic League. Key Losses: Bran­don Sei­d­man, Patrick Salmon, Ben Sawyer, An­drew San­difer

Top Re­turn­ers: Christo­pher Kim (Jr.), Mark Fas­ciocco (Sr.), Jamie Mc­Grath (So.), Sami Cerebe (So.), Chris­tian Cole­man (So.). Out­look: The Pa­tri­ots grad­u­ated two of their three Prep Na­tion­als medal­ists (Salmon and Sei­de­man) but GA’s third, Kim, took fourth at 106 – the pro­gram’s high­est fin­isher at the meet since 2012.

Se­nior Fas­ciocco and sopho­mores Cereb, Cole­man and Mc­Grath re­turn to the GA lineup af­ter all qual­i­fied for Prep Na­tion­als last sea­son.

Hat­boro-Hor­sham

Coach: Tren­ton Mongillo (se­cond sea­son).

League:

Last Sea­son: 12-9 (6-1 con­fer­ence), lost to Down­ing­town West in Dis­trict 1-3A Du­als first round. Key Losses: Nick Chap­man, Sammy Ne­gron.

Top Re­turn­ers: Alanna Bar­be­rio (So., 113), AJ Ve­gas (Sr., 138), Davis Wheeler (Sr., 145), CJ Grier (Jr., 182), Lo­gan Flynn (Jr., 195). Oth­ers to Watch: Sam Smith (So., 126), Rus­sell Lilly (Fr., 132), Hunter Long (Fr., 145). Out­look: The Hat­ters fin­ished se­cond in the Amer­i­can last sea­son and will try to make a push SOL Amer­i­can Con­fer­ence.

to the top with a lineup that in­cludes dis­trict qual­i­fiers Flynn, Grier, Ve­gas and Wheeler. “HH looks to be com­pet­i­tive this sea­son as a team and in­di­vid­u­ally,” Mongillo said. “We want to win the Amer­i­can (Con­fer­ence) ti­tle, qual­ify for Dis­trict Du­als, and win.

“We have a full lineup, with ex­pe­ri­enced and ver­sa­tile wrestlers and a large team with over 40 wrestlers in the room.”

La Salle

Coach: Ben­jamin Court­ney (first sea­son).

League: PCL Red Di­vi­sion

Last Sea­son: 2-12 (1-3 di­vi­sion) Key Losses: Gar­rett Zo­bel.

Top Re­turn­ers: Jimmy Po­draza (Sr., 132), Luke Lot­sis (Sr., 138), Nate Wil­liamson (Sr., 182), Dillon Trainer (Jr., 220).

Oth­ers to Watch: (Sr., 285).

Out­look: La Salle is look­ing for a bounce-back cam­paign in its first sea­son un­der Court­ney. The Ex­plor­ers are young — and also grad­u­ated Zo­bel, a two-time state medal­ist — but with more than 40 wrestlers on the ros­ter they have a deep lineup aim­ing to con­tend in the PCL. As a sopho­more, Trainer ad­vanced to the North East Re­gion­als at 220.

Methac­ton

Le­land Mer­sky

Coach:

League: PAC Lib­erty Di­vi­sion. Last Sea­son: 11-10 (2-3), lost to Coun­cil Rock South Dis­trict 1-3A Du­als first round.

Key Losses: Michael Blake­more. Top Re­turn­ers: Tonee El­lis (Sr.), Kibwe McNair (Jr.), Ro­man Moser (Jr.), Corey Mora­bito (Sr.), Jorge Car­mona (Sr.), William Re­bert (Sr.).

Out­look: With a trio of re­turn­ing state qual­i­fiers — El­lis, McNair and Moser — the War­riors look to bat­tle with usual Dis­trict 1 heavy­weights Boy­er­town, Owen J. Roberts and Spring-Ford in the PAC Lib­erty.

Brad Clark (se­cond sea­son)

Norristown

Coach: Mark Harner

League: PAC Lib­erty Di­vi­sion. Last Sea­son: 4-11 (0-5 di­vi­sion). Key Losses: Rick Bre­gen­zer, Rich Mag­gio

Top Re­turn­ers: Nick Se­mon (Sr.), Sean Caw­ley (Jr.) Marvins Ravix (Jr.), Lakine Wal­lace (Sr.). Oth­ers to Watch: Isaiah Tucker (Jr.), Kenya Spence (Jr.). Out­look: The Ea­gles look to break­through in the al­ways tough PAC Lib­erty. Se­mon ad­vanced to re­gion­als in 2018 af­ter tak­ing fourth at the Dis­trict 1-3A Cen­tral tour­na­ment.

North Penn

Coach: sea­son).

League:

Last Sea­son: 12-5 (6-0 con­fer­ence), lost to West Ch­ester Hen­der­son Dis­trict 1-3A Du­als first round

Key Losses: Erik Laugh­lin (knee in­jury), Ryan Cody (eight place PIAAs, 285), Reid Dent­ner, Gar­ret Qual­let, Dan Si­bel, Owen Vere­spy.

Top Re­turn­ers: Patrick O’Neill (Sr., 160), Nophir Har­rell (So., 132), Alec Schrum (Jr., 138), Ed­die Galang (So., 113/120), Me­hedi Hasan (Sr., 145), Jar­ret Niedosik (Jr., 170), Jabez Chae (Jr., 120). Oth­ers to Watch: Will Mar­row (Fr., 126).

Out­look: The Knights’ run at a fourth-straight Con­ti­nen­tal crown has some hur­dles with NP re­plac­ing its up­per weights and two-time Amer­i­can champ Quak­er­town now in the con­fer­ence. But North Penn has a strong group in the light and mid­dle weights led by Blooms­burg com­mit O’Neill, who last sea­son at 160 won the South East Re­gional ti­tle and took sev­enth at states. Schrum, Hasan and Niedosik all qual­i­fied for dis­tricts last sea­son.

Robert SOL

Pen­nridge

Shettsline(25th Con­ti­nen­tal Con­fer­ence.

Coach: JT Smith (first sea­son). League: SOL Con­ti­nen­tal Con­fer­ence.

Last Sea­son:

Key Losses: Josh Still­ings, David Blan­chard, Michael Bel­jan. Top Re­turn­ers: Evan Wid­ing (Sr.), Jadin Bass (Sr.) Lo­gan Green (Jr.)

Out­look: Still­ings is now at Drexel af­ter earn­ing the Rams’ first state gold since 2005 but there’s still a solid group at Pen­nridge for first-year coach Smith. Wid­ing won a pair of matches at the PIAA Cham­pi­onships last sea­son 5-5 (3-3 con­fer­ence). Out­look: “We are car­ry­ing a large team with vary­ing amounts of ex­pe­ri­ence,” Dubbs said. “We look to have a strong sea­son and be com­pet­i­tive within the PAC. We have some re­turn­ing wrestlers that can do very well and hope to wind up in Her­shey this year.”

Ply­mouth Whitemarsh

Coach: David Luthy.

League: SOL Amer­i­can.

Last Sea­son: 9-6 (5-2 con­fer­ence)

Key Losses: Marco DiBat­tista, Zach Fisher, Scott Horry, Dar­ren Ries, War­ren Young.

Top Re­turn­ers: Paolo DiSanto (Jr.), David Gar­cia (Sr.) John Zhang (Sr.), Isaac Avel­lino (Sr.), Jake Gi­nesin (So.).

Out­look: The Colo­nials should be among the teams vy­ing to top spot in the Amer­i­can af­ter de­fend­ing champ Quak­er­town is now in the Con­ti­nen­tal. DiSanto earned his first state ap­pear­ance as a sopho­more by tak­ing re­gional bronze in 285.

Soud­er­ton

Coach: Tris­tan Boyd (eighth sea­son).

League: SOL Con­ti­nen­tal.

Last Sea­son: 6-10 (4-2 con­fer­ence).

Key Losses: Har­ri­son

(117 ca­reer wins).

Top Re­turn­ers: Tyler Wil­liams (Sr., 138/145), Bruno Stolfi (Sr., 195), Con­nor Trow­bridge (145/152).

Out­look: The In­di­ans look to stay among the top sides in the Con­ti­nen­tal af­ter tak­ing third last sea­son. Both Wil­liams and Stolfi ad­vances to states in 2018 with Wil­liams leav­ing Her­shey with a sixth-place medal in 132. Trow­bridge reached re­gion­als af­ter tak­ing third at dis­tricts.

“We have a lot of se­niors this sea­son with the ca­pa­bil­ity to do well,” Boyd said. “Tyler is a re­turn­ing PA 6th and Bruno lost in the blood round at states. Sev­eral other se­niors in­clud­ing Con­nor, Bry­don Bate­man, Spenser Haslam and Dean Taipale should do well this sea­son pro­vided we stay healthy through a tougher than nor­mal sched­ule. We are adding some good youth this sea­son as well.”

Up­per Me­rion

An­drade

Coach:

League: PAC Fron­tier Di­vi­sion). Last Sea­son: 2-12 (1-4 di­vi­sion). Key Losses: An­thony Ya­cov­etti (re­gional qual­i­fier)

Top Re­turn­ers: Faith (My­ers (Sr., 138), Collin Power (So.), Ay­den Cheng (So.), Sean Wil­liams (Jr.), Johnathan Baez (So.), Victor Guirard (So.), Manny Salazar (Jr.), Miguel Amor (Jr.) Oth­ers to Watch: David Es­tock (Fr., 132), Gabe Va­mas (138), Ed­uardo Lazado (152), Jeifer Perez (170), James Shore (220), Trey­mayne Brown (285).

Out­look: The Vik­ings con­tinue to re­build in sea­son No. 2 un­der Harner with 13 fresh­men on the ros­ter, six be­ing looked at to con­trib­ute in the var­sity lineup. Harner sees a hand­ful of wrestlers mak­ing a post­sea­son push in­clud­ing Power, Cheng, Wil­liams and Brown.

Tim Harner (se­cond sea­son).

Up­per More­land

Coach: John DeFranco (sev­enth sea­son).

League: SOL Amer­i­can.

Last Sea­son: 6-7 (4-3 con­fer­ence).

Key Losses: Harry Green.

Top Re­turn­ers: Austin Zubyk (Sr., 170), Chris Walker (Jr., 138). Oth­ers to Watch: Chris Di­azJack­son (So., 132), John Richter (Sr., 145).

Out­look: My ex­pec­ta­tions are al­ways the same, work hard, wres­tle tough and con­tinue to im­prove each week,” DeFranco said. “We start off the sea­son at the Pope John Paul II In­vi­ta­tional Tour­na­ment and we’ll see what we have and where we can im­prove af­ter our first com­pe­ti­tion. As a team, we’re look­ing for­ward Hat­boro-Hor­sham ‘Bat­tle of the Bor­der’ Match.”

Wis­sahickon

Coach: An­thony Stagliano (ninth sea­son).

Last Sea­son:

Key Losses: Nick Sen­der­ling, Bray­den Druger, Jon Keller.

Top Re­turn­ers: Char­lie Bram­mer (Sr., 126/132), Pe­ter Sweeney (Sr., 138/145), Brian Fen­nell (Sr., 195/220), Mark Thomp­son (Sr., 285).

Oth­ers to Watch: Kevin Salmon (Jr., 160⁄170), Dan Keller (Jr., 182⁄195).

Out­look: Bram­mer, Sweeney and Thomp­son re­turn to the lineup af­ter reach­ing dis­tricts last year as the Tro­jans are set on con­tend­ing for the Amer­i­can ti­tle and a spot in dis­trict du­als. 10-16 (3-4 con­fer­ence).

BILL RUDICK — FOR DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

North Penn’s Patrick O’Neill in ac­tion dur­ing last sea­son’s PIAA Class 3A South East Re­gional.

BILL RUDICK — FOR DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

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