Exeter Claims 5 Individual Titles, Team Title
The team with their 2nd consecutive Sectional Championship Trophy.
Exeter Wrestling's individual post-season got under way on Saturday at Governor Mifflin Intermediate School. Exeter has high hopes after coming off a banner season of team accomplishments. Heading into the Sectional Tournament, the Eagles looked to defend their title from a year ago. Winning titles for the Eagles, and advancing to the District III Tournament were Austin Desanto (SR, 126), Tyler Harkness (SR, 152), Tyler Bagoly (SR, 170), Denny Karas (JR, 195) and Oscar Daniels (SR, 285).
Harkness in the Sectional Finals.
Desanto locked up his fourth consecutive title with a dominating technical fall in the finals. Desanto's road to the finals wasn't any more difficult - posting a first period fall and first period technical fall in the preceding two rounds. Tyler Harkness entered the tournament as the #5 seed, and clearly wasn't content with that ranking. Harkness' day was dominating as well - notching three wins by fall, and one win by technical fall, for his first sectional title.
Tyler Bagoly with his OW trophy.
Bagoly took home his second consecutive title. Bagoly was barely tested en route to the finals where he'd square off with Tommy O'Brien of Wilson - ranked 5th in the state behind Bagoly (4th). The matchup was the most highly anticipated of the finals, and the match delivered. Bagoly and O'Brien went scoreless through the first period; however, Bagoly opened the scoring with a reversal, and later put O'Brien to his back for three more points. O'Brien scored an escape late in the third, too late for a comeback of any sort, and Bagoly took gold with a 5-1 decision. The dominating final win was noticed by all coaches, as Bagoly was voted the tournament's "Most Outstanding Wrestler."
Karas and Daniels also took home their second consecutive title. Powered into the finals with two falls, Karas ran off a 9-2 decision over #17 Ben Fromm of Cocalico. Daniels scored a first round fall to advance to the semifinals. In the semis, Daniels posted a 5-2 decision to advance to the finals. The finals saw Daniels square off against #17 Brady Maxwell of Cocalico. Daniels handed Maxwell a convincing 5-2 loss to bring home gold. Jon Greenleaf (SR, 220) continued his quest for 100 wins, getting 3 wins to advance to the finals. In the finals, Greenleaf dropped a 3-1 decision to returning PIAA 7th Place Jesse Enck of Daniel Boone.
Tyler Borton (SR, 160) dropped a close semifinal match to eventual champion Bailey Funk of Wilson. Borton rebounded in the consolations to take home 3rd place, and his second trip to the District III tournament. Ryan Watts (SR, 113), Ryan Matthews (SO, 120) and Nolan Buck (SR, 182) advance to the District tournament with 4th place finishes. Each wrestler suffered 2 losses in the tournament - both losses came at the hands of the same opponent for each. Not qualifying for the tournament, but finishing on the podium were Alex O'Neill (JR, 138) and Gage Moran (JR, 145). Both took home 6th place finishes, and dropped close consolation semifinal matches to eliminate them from the District tournament.
The 10 wrestlers advancing will be back in action on Thursday evening at the Giant Center in Hershey. A top 4 finish at the District III tournament will advance the wrestler to the PIAA AAA State Championships two weeks later - again in Hershey at the Giant Center. #workday
• Click Here for the2017 AAA D3 Section I Brackets
• Click Here for the2017 AAA D3 Section I Team Scores
• Click Here for the2017 D3/SC Regional Brackets
Exeter's Run Cut Short By Perennial State Powers
Exeter opened up with a win over Boyertown at the PIAA State Duals. The win would be the organizations first team duals win at the Giant Center for the PIAA State Tournament. In the past, Exeter had only won a "wrestle-in" bout - only getting them to "The Show" at the Giant Center once, and returning home after a 0-2 performance. This year was different. As the group of 10 seniors continue to raise the bar of what Exeter Wrestling is, they once again guided their team further than any other team in program history. The Boyertown dual was expected to be close, and it didn't disappoint. Oscar Daniels (SR, 285) got Exeter started with a forfeit, and Jake Keller (FR, 106) won a huge swing bout by major decision to put Exeter up 10-0. Boyertown responded with a pair of major decisions and a fall over the next 3 bouts, to take the lead at 14-10.
Desanto working a bar on his opponent.
Moran looking for the fall against Boyertown.
Austin Desanto (SR, 132) got Exeter back on top with a technical fall, coming close to the pin several times. Justin Landis (SR, 138) has been battling through excruciating pain, winning some and losing some. On this night, it would be a loss; however, Landis would prevent Boyertown from getting any bonus points. Gage Moran (JR, 145) took another key swing bout - this one by fall. Once on top, Moran through his legs in and cranked on a power half. After a nice adjustment with his hips, Moran flattened his opponent with 6 seconds remaining in the first period. The 6 point fall put Exeter back on top - temporarily - 21-17, heading into the heart of the Bears lineup.
Exeter would surrender the next three bouts - all by decision - and fall behind by a score of 26-21. After weathering the storm of some of Boyertown's strength, Boyertown would now need to hold on as Exeter would run a pair of State Ranked wrestlers to the mat, and a senior 4-year starter. Ty Bagoly (SR, 170) - ranked #3 in the state at 170 pounds - would bump up to take on Boyertown's Elijah Jones, ranked #6 in the state at 182 pounds. Bagoly would surrender the initial takedown, but would later lock up a cradle and turn Jones to his back for a 3-point near fall. Bagoly would add 3 more points, and walk off the victor by a score of 6-3.
With the Eagles now down by only two points, the match headed into the final two bouts. Denny Karas (JR, 195) - ranked #6 in the state would win by fall in the middle of the second period, as he turned his Boyertown opponent with an arm bar, pushing the Eagles ahead 30-26. Exeter felt more than confident at this point, knowing that even if Boyertown could get a win, it would need to be by bonus points against senior, and 4-year starter, Jon Greenleaf (SR, 220). Greenleaf would go into the second period scoreless, and that wouldn't last long. :49 seconds into the second period the match was over, and Exeter had notched their first ever dual meet win in Hershey. The Eagles now advanced to the quarterfinals against #5 North Allegheny. Exeter needed all of the swing bouts against North Allegheny, as well as key bonus point victories in other matchups, in order to advance to the state semifinals.
Karas with the pin vs. Canon Mac.
Daniels with a takedown on the edge.
Tyler Bagoly, Nolan Buck and Denny Karas would do their part early, with a three match win streak by fall, decision, and fall, respectively. Jon Greenleaf would have his hands full with North Allegheny's defending state champion Jake Woodley. Greenleaf - who's normally hard to score on - would come up on the short end of the 19-9 decision, limiting NA's stud to only one additional bonus point. Oscar Daniels would post a 5-2 decision, and the Eagles were on their way with a 18-4 lead. At the turn, Exeter would surrender a major decision and a fall before a heartbreaking 3-1 loss for Ryan Watts (SR, 113). Watts would bump up to 120 pounds, and appeared to have a takedown locked up in the waning seconds; however, after a scramble ensued, Watts wound up on the short end of the decision, as NA's Gabe Falo scored a takedown with :02 seconds remaining.
The loss could have hurt the teams momentum and hopes, but Chris Matthews (SO, 120) - also up a weight - would take a one point decision for the Eagles by way of a score of 3-2. The momentum came at a good point, as Austin Desanto would follow Matthews with an onslaught of takedowns and a 23-8 technical fall. Exeter would be in the lead by a score of 26-17 with only 4 bouts remaining. However, the four bouts remaining would see Exeter as longshots in each one. Justin Landis would battle 6th ranked Zach Stedeford - and surrender a major decision 9-1. Gage Moran took on NA's #3 Jake Hinkson. Moran had caught the attention of the entire arena, battling extremely hard against the heavy favorite. Down by a score of 2-0 in the last 20 seconds of the second period, Hinkson locked up a tight cradle and put Moran on his back for the fall and a 1-point North Allegheny lead 27-26. Tyler Harkness (SR, 152) was caught for backpoints early, and was unable to get to his offense and close the gap, ultimately surrendering a 7-0 decision adding 3 team points to the NA lead, now 30-26.
To say the battle was uphill at this point would be an understatement. Exeter's Tyler Borton (SR, 160) would take the mat against NA's Eric Hong - ranked #2 Nationally at the weight. Borton would not make it to the second period, and the Eagles would need to regroup for one more bout to keep their hopes of a state medal alive. Final score NA 36, Exeter 26. Exeter's path to a state medal would get no easier in the consolation bracket. After losing to #5 North Allegheny, Exeter was bumped to the loser's bracket to square off with #4 Canon-McMillan. It would appear as the emotion of the big victories and disappointing losses had taken its toll on the Eagles, as they dropped a 42-21 dual to the Big Macs. The effort and energy never seemed to arrive - as the Eagles dropped one disappointing match after another. Winning for the eagles in their finale were Denny Karas (fall), Jon Greenleaf (dec. 2-0), Austin Desanto (forfeit), Tyler Borton (dec. 6-2) and Tyler Bagoly (dec. 4-0).
The Eagles would end the programs best season as a Top 10 ranked team in the #1 high school wrestling state in the country. With the opportunity to compete as a team in dual meets over, the team now heads into the individual postseason with several wrestlers focused on some state hardware. #workday
• Click Here for State Pictures
DISTRICT III CHAMPIONS!!!
The Eagles with their District 3 Championship Trophy.
Exeter appeared in its first ever District III title match over the weekend, after falling short in the semifinals the last three years. The opponent would be a familiar foe in Cedar Cliff, the team the Eagles squared off with last year in the District III 3rd place bout. Last year, Exeter bested Cedar Cliff in a close dual. This year, the expectations were the same. The Eagles could take home their first ever District III Championship, but in order to do so, they were going to have to win the close bouts, and minimize bonus point victories for Cedar Cliff.
The bout started at 126 where Brandon Borton (SO, 126) faced one of Cedar Cliff's top wrestlers in Josh McLaughlin. McLaughlin, ranked #5 in the district at 132, dropped a weight class for the dual. Outgunned, Borton gave McLaughlin a fight before losing by fall midway through the second period. At 132 pounds, Austin Desanto (SR, 132), ranked #1 in the state, received a forfeit to start a run of 8 consecutive Eagle victories - many by the slimmest of margins. Justin Landis (SR, 138) has been making the best of a bad situation, fighting through a nagging, painful injury for the better half of the season. Landis would take on #9 in the district Luis Tirado. Tirado came out and secured an early takedown but couldn't seem to keep Landis on the mat. After several times to their feet, and many mat returns, Landis turned into Tirado from his feet and hit him with a lateral drop as time expired in the period. The reversal was good, to even the score, but time was up before Landis could get any back points. The bout continued as a back and forth battle, but late in the third period, Landis once again got into an upper body tie and was able to throw Tirado to his back, secure near fall points, and lock up the victory by an 8-7 final.
Gage Moran (JR, 145) took the mat at 145 against Christian Prestil. Prestil, typically a 138 pounder moved up (along with Tirado) due to the vacancy that the forfeit to Desanto created. This meant that most of the lineup would bump, and exposed Cedar Cliff's strategy. Moran would start slow but score first. On top, Moran went to work and was a hammer, grinding out back points on a couple of occasions - nearly securing the fall in both instances. Ultimately, Moran would finish the match with his opponent on his back, as time expired, one second away from a 5-count for backpoints, leaving him just that one-second shy of a major decision, winning 11-4.
Matt Ward working for the fall.
With things going the Eagles' way, there were several swing bouts upcoming. Matt Ward (JR, 152) entered the lineup for just the 5th time this season. Coming into the bout with a 2-2 record, Ward is known in the room as one of the harder workers - and always willing to go to battle. Ward took to the mat and scored the first takedown. From there he didn't look back. With the crowd on their feet, the Spartan Center erupted in a deafening roar as Ward won by fall at the 5:58 mark in the match. With a major decision locked up, the fall gave Exeter 2 additional team points.
As if there couldn't be enough drama in the dual, a pair of 152-pounders would take the mat at 160 pounds. Exeter's #11d Tyler Harkness (SR, 152) and Cedar Cliff's #5d Jared Meise. This was the swing bout the Exeter staff was anticipating. Harkness has been on fire of late - almost surpassing his total wins for sophomore and junior seasons combined this year. Harkness found himself trailing for most of the bout, going back and forth. In the third period, he surrendered a takedown to put himself down 7-4 with time quickly winding down. He worked quickly for an escape, and persisted on his feet against a fading Meise, securing the match tying takedown with 6 seconds remaining. The match would end regulation in a dead heat, and they entered the sudden victory period on their feet. After a brief injury time taken by Meise, the period started with Meise taking a quick deep shot. Harkness "funked" Meise to come out the back - getting the takedown and the victory at the :37 mark of sudden victory.
With Exeter going full throttle through the heart of the lineup, the lead was built to 21-6 as Tyler Borton (SR, 160) headed out for a brawl. Borton had the crowd on their feet, almost immediately as Cedar Cliff's Hunter Nelson hit him with a "gator roll" to score a quick 2 point takedown and 2 point near fall. Borton would quickly reverse Nelson and earn near fall go to the second period, relieved, at a 5-4 lead. Borton would control the remaining two periods, logging a 9-6 decison and putting the Eagles up 24-6.
#3s #1d Tyler Bagoly (SR, 170) was battling illness last meet against Shippensburg, and was still feeling the effects heading into his meeting with Cedar Cliff's Bobby Whalen. If "Bags" wasn't feeling well, Whalen didn't want to hear about it, and certainly didn't want to see him at full strength. Bagoly took it to Whalen, running up a 17-2 technical fall late into the third period. Getting the technical fall by way of takedowns late in the third secured an additional team point for the Eagles boosting their margin to 29-6 with with 6 bouts remaining. #11d Nolan Buck (SR, 182) would enter another huge swing bout, with the meet still not out of reach for Cedar Cliff. Wrestling at 195 pounds, Buck was seeing Cedar Cliff's #7d Donovan Ball - a 170-pounder weighed in at 182. Buck scored first, but Ball battled back. Midway through the second, Ball through a violent crossface and was penalized for a point. That point proved to be the margin needed, as Buck continued to keep Ball off a good shot, winning by a 6-5 final score. Eagles 32, Cedar Cliff 6.
Buck's decision would be the last for the Eagles as #6s #2d Denny Karas (JR, 195) was upset at 220 pounds by #19s #3d Emorson Wentz - Cedar Cliff's 182-pounder. Exeter's #9s #4d Oscar Daniels would surrender a decision to Cedar Cliff's #3s #1d Francis Duggan - a 2x PIAA Medalist. Daniels battled through a difficult first period, as Duggan looked to turn Daniels, knowing he needed a fall for his team to remain mathematically in the dual. After the first period, Duggan's conditioning failed, and while he was able to score on his feet, he was unable to get Daniels to his back, and the 11-5 loss for Daniels secured the Eagles biggest victory in team history.
Exeter would lose the final 3 bouts by Fall, Tech Fall and decision, respectively. The final score Exeter 32, Cedar Cliff 27.
The loss was Cedar Cliff's first of the season, and the win pushed Exeter to 22-1. Exeter became the first Berks County team to win a District III AAA title since Boyertown in 2001. Speaking of Boyertown, the Eagles will face off against the Bears in their first round PIAA AAA Team Duals at the Giant Center in Hershey on Thursday at 8 PM. #Workday
• Click Here for the Cedar Cliff Box Score
• Click Here for the PIAA AAA Team Tournament Bracket
• Click Here for the PIAA AAA Team Tournament Schedule
Eagles Advance to District III Title Match
This group of Exeter seniors has made history once again - and changed the direction of the program single handedly. Year after year, the team logged program firsts by winning titles, placing wrestlers, and most notably, advancing to the PIAA State Team Duals Tournament. However, advancing to the state tournament this year isn't a first for the Eagles... it's not even a second or third. The program has qualified for its 4th consecutive PIAA tournament as a team. That means something, beyond the fact that it is 4 in a row. It means the culture of the program has changed, and no member of this team has a memory of not qualifying for the tournament. It's no longer a goal, it's an expectation. It's what Exeter Wrestling does.
Tyler Harkness with a cradle.
The stage was set for them in the district semifinal on Thursday night. The same stage, same round, same setting they've been turned back from in three previous runs. This time, was different. They were the favorite, and they weren't matched up with District III perennial powers Central Dauphin or Cumberland Valley - who between the two have accounted for 14 of the last 15 DIII championships. This year, a new foe: Shippensburg. The match began at 126 pounds, where Brandon Borton (SO, 126) would get to his offense and threaten too late in the match. Borton would drop a decision. David Wentling (JR, 126/132) took one for the team, surrendering a fall to Chandler Olson - the #2 ranked wrestler in the state at 132. Exeter was in a hole by the score of 9-0 after two bouts.
Austin Desanto (SR, 132) would receive a forfeit at 138. Justin Landis (SR, 138) would put one of the gutsiest performances together in Exeter wrestling history to change the tide. Battling an injury, Landis found himself down by 1 with less than 30 seconds to go. Landis fought through the pain to secure a takedown with 15 seconds remaining, and would finish on top for the win, bringing the Eagles back to even at 9-9. Tyler Harkness (SR, 152) would find himself trailing late in the bout as well. Harkness, late in the third, would find himself a cradle to break the match open for a 9-6 win and the first Eagles lead 12-9.
Ryan Watts looking for the fall.
Tyler Borton (SR, 160) got on a roll on his feet running up an 11-2 major decision that would continue the Eagles upper weight run. Ty Bagoly (SR, 170), Nolan Buck (SR, 182) and Denny Karas (JR, 195) would win by fall, major decision and fall, respectively, pushing the Eagles lead to a 32-9 with 5 bouts remaining. The Eagles would get one win in those remaining bouts, a fall by Ryan Watts (SR, 113) that would put the match out of reach for Shippensburg, as the final score would end at 38-23.
The Eagles now face undefeated Cedar Cliff at 1 PM on Saturday at the Milton Hershey Spartan Center. The finals appearance is the first in school history, and the Eagles look to bring home a District III championship on their way to next week's State Tournament. Come out and support on Saturday! #Workday
Wrestlers Rout in District Prelims and Quarters
Tuesday night saw the end of an era, as the senior wrestlers took their home mat for the final two times. It was only fitting that these two times would be a couple of the biggest home duals in program history, as part of the District III AAA Team Tournament. First up, the #2 Eagles would bang heads with #15 South Western. The matchups going in looked favorable for the Eagles; however, a few starters battling sickness and injuries always makes things interesting.
Chris Matthews working for the fall.
The bout started at 152 pounds with Exeter's Trio of Tylers - Harkness (SR, 152), Borton (SR, 160) and Bagoly (SR, 170). Harkness got the Eagles on the board in dominating fashion with a 16-4 major decision. He was followed by Borton with a 6-0 shutout and Bagoly with a second period technical fall. Nolan Buck (SR, 182) would hang on for a 7-5 decision and Denny Karas (JR, 195) added a first period fall to get the Eagles out running to a 21-0 lead. The Eagles would never relinquish the lead - and, in fact, the 21 points would be more than South Western could muster as they rolled to a 51-19 victory.
Big Spring would be the next obstacle for Exeter as the win would give them their 4th straight District III Semifinal appearance. On paper, the bout looked about as close as it could be, with the Eagles holding a razor thin margin. Borton opened the bout, dropping a 2-1 decision by way of a late takedown at the buzzer. Bagoly would respond with another technical fall, and Buck dropped a hard fought 5-1 decision to put the eagles in a 6-5 hole after 3 bouts. Next up would be one of the most highly anticipated bouts of the night as Exeter's #6 state-ranked Denny Karas would battle #8 Blake Barrick. Karas used an mid-first takedown to start the scoring, and only continued to build a lead, winning in convincing fashion by a margin of 7-2. Jon Greenleaf (SR, 220), battling flu-like symptoms committed everything he had to the teams cause, and held off his opponents late scoring attempt for a 3-1 decision.
Then things took off... Oscar Daniels (SR, 285) isn't typically the small guy - weighing in at 265 +/-. However, Big Springs Hunter Adams made use of the entire 287 pound limit, weighing in at 286.8! Daniels speed and agility were too much for the Adams' size as Daniels scored a fall mid-way through the second period. Daniels fall was followed by an impressive second period fall by Jake Keller (FR, 106) who seems to be improving in every outing. This was Keller's second fall of the night. At 113, Ryan Watts (SR, 113) is ranked #9 in the District. He met up with Hunter Gregoris - ranked #10 in the district. In what was another swing match for the dual, Watts was coasting to a 7-1 victory - surrendering a meaningless reversal at the buzzer. Chris Matthews (SO, 120) scored early and often, running away with a first period tech fall by an 18-3 margin. Austin Desanto (SR, 132) did his best Matthew's impression with his own tech fall in the first, by a 20-5 margin. Harkness would end the dual, which was out of reach for Big Spring, by way of receiving a forfeit.
Exeter heads back to the mat on Thursday at 5:30 vs. Shippensburg at Spring Grove Area High School. A win against Ship would put the Eagles in their 4th consecutive PIAA Team Dual Championships - and their first ever District III Championship Dual (Sat @ Milton Hershey). #Workday
Eagles Repeat As County Champs
Exeter took to the mats at Wyomissing Friday, January 27, looking to defend a county team title - for the first time ever. Standing in their way would be Reading (who knocked off Schuylkill Valley) and Governor Mifflin (who defeated Hamburg and Wyomissing). It didn't matter, the Eagles were ready to go. The semifinal match saw Reading win only 2 of the 14 bouts during the dual. The most notable event of the dual was at 195 as the Exeter Faithful erupted with cheers as Denny Karas (JR, 195) won by fall in 2:09 to secure his 100th career victory!
The finals ended as quickly as they started. Total match time was about 45 minutes, as Exeter won 10 of 14 to secure their second title by a score of 57-18. Going 2-0 for the Eagles Friday night were Ryan Watts (SR, 113), Austin Desanto (SR, 132), Justin Landis (SR, 138), Tyler Harkness (SR, 152), Tyler Borton (SR, 160), Tyler Bagoly (SR, 170), Denny Karas, Jon Greenleaf (SR, 220) and Oscar Daniels (SR, 285).
The Eagles now officially start their post-season run as the #2 seed in District III. They will host South Western in the opening round, and look to meet either Red Land or Big Spring in the quarterfinals. Wrestling starts at 6 PM on two mats, featuring all four teams. Come out and support the team, pack the stands, and let's make it loud! #Workday
Grapplers Take Down Boone in Landslide
The Eagles wrapped up their league duals with neighborhood rival Daniel Boone, in similar fashion to how they've run through the county all season. At the end of the night, the Eagles had put a 70-6 beating on the Blazers. The dual started and (nearly) ended with the most competitive bout of the evening. At 106 pounds, Exeter's Jake Keller (FR, 106) squared off against Daniel Boone's Stephen Spitko in a rematch of the county finals. The county final saw Keller secure the first takedown, and then the wheels came off - losing by fall in the first period. This bout was quite different, as Keller used two early takedowns and a set of near fall points to run up a 7-1 lead early on. Spitko battled back getting some back points of his own, and the match came down to the closing seconds, but Keller couldn't close the deal, losing a hard fought 11-9 decision.
Ryan Watts hand fighting on his feet.
Alex O'Neill looking for the fall.
After Keller's bout, Ryan Watts (SR, 113), Chris Matthews (SO, 126), Alex O'Neill (JR, 138), Gage Moran (JR, 145) and Tyler Harkness (SR, 152) ran off a series of pins for the Eagles. Buried in the run of pins was a major decision by Brandon Borton (SO, 120). Austin Desanto (SR, 132), Tyler Borton (SR, 160), Ty Bagoly (SR, 170), John Harrell (JR, 182) and Denny Karas (JR, 195) received forfeits.
At 220, Jon Greenleaf (SR, 220) would square off against Jessie Enck in a rematch of last year's county final. Enck, a 2016 PIAA 7th place medalist, has been Greenleaf's nemesis. Unfortunately, this bout wouldn't be much different than the prior meetings. Scoreless after one period, Greenleaf was unable to escape in the second period, leading to a scoreless match at the start of the third period. Greenleaf conceded the escape immediately, but was unable to score on his feet, and ultimately dropped a 3-0 decision. Oscar Daniels (SR, 285) won by fall in the finale.
The Eagles get back on the mats in the BCIAA County Team Tournament on Friday at Wyomissing High School. As the Division I leader in the standings, the Eagles receive a bye to the semifinals where they will face the winner of Schuylkill Valley/Reading High at 5:45 PM. The finals will follow at 8:00 PM. #Workday
Wrestlers Run the Table at Blue & White Duals
The team with the Blue/White Duals championship trophy.
Exeter hosted 10 area teams at home for their annual Blue/White Duals on Saturday, January 21. On the docket for the Eagles were Quakertown, Garnet Valley, Coatesville and Red Lion. Preliminary research had the team feeling positive about the outlook within their pool, and expected to have a showdown with #23 Downingtown West. Quakertown would be the first victim. Exeter started down 0-6 after the first bout, but then ran off a series of 8 consecutive wins, which included falls by Gage Moran (JR, 145), Tyler Harkness (SR, 152), Tyler Borton (SR, 160), Nolan Buck (SR, 182), Denny Karas (JR, 195), Jon Greenleaf (SR, 220) and Oscar Daniels (SR, 285). Tyler Bagoly (SR, 170) added a 15-0 technical fall to the mix to put the Eagles by an insurmountable 47-6 margin. Ryan Watts (SR, 113) bumped to 120 to take an 8-2 decision. Chris Matthews (SO, 126) posted a 6-4 win, and Austin Desanto (SR, 132) ended the meet with a 25-10 technical fall, giving Exeter momentum with a 58-15 win in the first round.
Garnet Valley looked to be a much closer bout on paper. Things got even closer when Tyler Harkness was caught in a scramble for a neutral fall in the first period. The team quickly regrouped as Borton and Bagoly added a pair of pins. Nolan Buck, who has been hampered by injuries all season, suffered another setback and injury defaulted in his bout. That would end the day for Buck. Karas, Greenleaf and Daniels ran off three first period falls, and Ryan Watts added another fall early in the second. The Eagles held a narrow 36-21 lead heading into the strength of Garnet Valley's lineup. However, Exeter had one more hammer to throw their way as #1 Austin Desanto squared off against #3 (@ 126) Matt Marino. Desanto chased Marino for much of the match but couldn't escape Desanto's relentless attacking and surrendered a convincing 17-7 major decision to lock the match up, and keep the Eagles on pace for the finals winning 40-34.
Coatesville would only manage 5 wins against the Eagles, as the team took a 51-22 victory into the final round against an undermanned Red Lion team. Red Lion would only send a wrestler to the mat at 7 of the 14 weights, and managed 2 victories, as the Exeter ran away with a 65-12 victory. Downingtown West, as anticipated, emerged from the other bracket after escaping with a 34-28 win over Stroudsburg, by way of a 6 point fall in the meets final bout. The team put together a solid performance - one of their best of the year - winning all of the matches that they were favored in. Winning 9 bouts - 7 by bonus points - the # 10 Eagles took flight on the #23 Whippets and posted a dominating 44-22 victory.
Going 5-0 for the Eagles were Ryan Watts, #1 Austin Desanto, #4 Tyler Bagoly and #9 Oscar Daniels. One loss performances were handed in by Chris Matthews, Gage Moran, Jon Greenleaf, Denny Karas, and Tyler Harkness. The Eagles will visit Daniel Boone on Wednesday @ 6:30 to close their league dual season. Friday Night, the Eagles will take the mat in the Team County Tournament. The heavily favored Eagles will wait in the semi-finals to find out who their opponent will be, as they look to defend another title this season. #workday
• Click Here for the Dual Box Scores
Seniors Sent Off with Blowout
During the past three plus years, most things have gone well for the group of 2017 seniors on the roster, and Wednesday night was no different - as nearly everything went their way in a 67-6 blowout of visting Oley Valley High School. The meet would see 7 of the team's 10 seniors compete. The group had accounted for 717 career victories heading into the match, and they would all add one more win each to the total. Austin Desanto (SR, 132) moved up to 138 pounds and secured a fall in just 1:38.
Tyler Borton with the fall in his first match back.
The trio of Tyler's - Harkness (SR, 152), Borton (SR, 160) and Bagoly (SR, 170) - and Nolan Buck (SR, 182) would rattle off four consecutive first period falls. Jon Greenleaf added an injury default win (blood time) in what looked to be the most competitive match of the dual. Oscar Daniels (SR, 285) wrapped it up for the seniors with a 9-1 major decision. Three seniors were missing from the lineup - Ryan Watts (sick), Ryan Barzd (sick) and Justin Landis (inury).
Others winning for the Eagles were Gage Moran (JR, 145), Denny Karas (JR, 195), Jacob Keller (FR, 106), Brandon Borton (SO, 120), and David Wentling (JR, 126). The Eagles now sit at 10-1 heading into this weekend's Blue/White Duals hosted in our home gymnasiums. Exeter is scheduled to face Quakertown, Garnet Valley, Coatesville and Red Lion. Wrestling starts at 8 AM with the final round scheduled for 3:30. #workday
Eagles Continue Roll Through BCIAA Individual Championships, Repeat As County Champions
READING, PA - The Eagles hit the mats at the county tournament over the weekend, once again shorthanded with three seniors - Jon Greenleaf (SR, 220), Nolan Buck (SR, 182) and Justin Landis (SR, 138) - still sidelined nursing injuries. Even at less than full strength, the Eagles proved once again to be too much for the county competitors rolling to their second BCIAA Individual Tournament team title in as many years. After day 1, the Eagles sat atop the team standings by the narrowest of margins, just one half point ahead of Governor Mifflin. During the early round on day 2, they sent eight wrestlers into the semifinals vying for a spot in Saturday evening's finals. It's during this round that the Eagles separated themselves from the rest of the county, advancing 7 of 8 - half of the weight classes - to the County Finals.
The team with their second straight BCIAA Tournament Championship.
Freshman Jake Keller (106) avenged an earlier season loss to his Reading opponent, with a fall in the second period. Coming in as the third seed, Keller knew he was still the favorite, as he was caught for a fall in the dual meet while leading 10-1. Keller left nothing to chance, locking up the win before time could tick off the clock in the second period. Ryan Watts (SR, 113) dominated his way to the finals with a third period fall. Chris Matthews (SO, 126) may have had the easiest semifinal, as his opponent from Oley Valley was deemed ineligible for day 2 due to the appearance of a skin infection; however, Matthews - the eight seed - made headlines in the quarterfinals when he knocked off top-seeded Jethro Solomon of Schuylkill Valley with three near fall points midway through the third, breaking a 2-2 tie. Matthews would surrender an escape and move forward with a 5-3 victory.
Austin Desanto (SR, 132) handled his business as usual, racking up two technical falls by a scoring margin of 37-6 in a measly 2:16 of wrestling. Tyler Harkness (SR, 160) dropped a decision in the semifinals to Wyomissing's Tanner Vogel by score of 7-5. Harkness, uncharacteristically, gave up some big moves and found himself in a hole that was just a little too deep to recover from. Tyler Bagoly (SR, 170) advanced to the finals for the 3rd consecutive year with a 10-0 thumping of Reading's Ezekial Torres. The match was dominated whistle-to-whistle by Bagoly in a match that wasn't nearly as competitive as the score would indicate. Denny Karas (JR, 195) used a second period fall to advance, while Oscar Daniels (SR, 285) used a 5-1 decision to wrap up the semis, and set the stage for an Exeter heavy finals round.
The finals got off to a quick start with Keller gaining a takedown over Daniel Boone's highly-touted freshman Steven Spitko. This was the second takedown Spitko had given up on the season. Spitko rebounded quickly to get the fall at the end of the first. Watts became Exeter's first County Champion of 2016-17 with a 3-1 decision over Twin Valley's CJ Morton. Watts missed last season's county tournament due to a concussion, winning his first county title in what has been a very solid career for the senior. Chris Matthews looked to be in for a dogfight with Mifflin's Kyle Seibert. It took overtime to decide the dual meet matchup in early December. Matthews wasn't quite as competitive this time around, dropping a 9-3 decision in the finals.
Austin Desanto took on Daniel Boone's Jack Zummo. Zummo, coming from the 6th seed, was overmatched from the handshake as Desanto ran the score up quickly in a 20-3 clinic in just 1:12 to take home his 3rd county title. Bagoly took on 2016 State Qualifier Tommy O'brien from Wilson in his final. Bagoly, wrestling conservatively, maintained a consistent hand fight on his feet taking the match to the second period tied at zero. After a quick reversal, Bagoly held O'brien down for the remainder of the period, to take a 2-0 lead to the third. The third period would look almost identical to the first, and the score wouldn't change - giving Bagoly his second county championship. Karas' matchup in the finals had much of the Geigel Complex intrigued, as he would face Tulpehocken's freshman Zach Ruffner. Ruffner advanced to the finals by upsetting 2016 PIAA AAA Qualifier Charles Wildermuth of Oley Valley by a score of 7-2. Karas squashed any debate as to who top dog was quickly, getting the fall in the finals in just 1:08 to repeat as county champion. Daniels wrapped up the finals in anything but heavyweight fashion. Daniels displayed his dominance on his feet en route to a 23-8 major decision of Brandywine's Michael Hubble.
Also placing for the Eagles were Gage Moran (JR, 152) with a 3rd place finish, Tyler Harkness (3rd), and John Harrell (5th). In the placement round, the Eagles won 8 of their 10 bouts to close out the team title in dominating fashion. Heading into the final round, Exeter held a 190-158 advantage over rival Governor Mifflin. However, Mifflin would fail to make it to the 190 threshold - as the Eagles finished with a 223.50-182 margin of victory. Exeter pays tribute to their sensational group of Senior's this Wednesday at home against Oley Valley. The match is scheduled to start at 6:30PM with a ceremony to honor the class prior to the dual meet. Exeter stays at home for the weekend when they host their Blue/White Duals on Saturday. Saturday's action starts at 8AM. The Eagles look to repeat as champions of their duals. #workday
• Click Here for the Final Brackets
• Click Here for the Final Team Score
Shorthanded, Eagles Takedown Bulldogs
The Exeter wrestling team headed to the other side of town to take on the Wilson Bulldogs. A week ago, there was likely little thought of this being a marquee matchup of recent Berks County powers, but coming off of Parkland last weekend, the Eagles have a bit of the injury bug. The recent injuries left the team without Justin Landis (SR, 138), Nolan Buck (SR, 182) and Jon Greenleaf (SR, 220).
Gage Moran in on a takedown.
The dual got started in uneventful fashion, as Jake Steward (FR, 113) took a forfeit from the Bulldogs. Exeter bumped 113-pound starter Ryan Watts (SR) to 120 pounds to face defending county champion Brandon Connor. A questionable first period takedown proved to be the difference in an 8-6 loss suffered by Watts. Chris Matthews (SO, 126) got Exeter back on their winning ways after Brandon Borton (SO, 120) lost his matchup bumping to 126. Matthews faced a familiar opponent in Wilson's Ryan Lesko. Matthews faced Lesko twice last season, coming away with 1-point victories each time. This year would be much different for a much improved Matthews, who spent a significant amount of his off-season time on the mat or in the weight room. After a nearly scoreless first period, Matthews used a late takedown on the edge to take a 2-0 lead and start the scoring. He would continue to dominate on his feet and roll to a 7-1 victory.
Mike Crane working for the Fall.
Austin Desanto (SR, 132) continued the bump in weights, and improved on an early season technical fall against Wilson's Kolbe Eidle with a first period fall. After Desanto's win, Exeter would only drop two more bouts, at 145 and 182. Gage Moran (JR, 152) was physical from the top position, ultimately turning Nick Williams and securing the fall in the second period. Tyler Harkness (SR, 160) took advantage of the top position, locking up a cradle early for 3 back points en route to a 6-1 win. Tyler Bagoly (SR, 170) took to the mat which would be the longest bout of the night. After a quick takedown, Bagoly went to work on top, at which time the match would be delayed for bleeding coming from the Wilson wrestler. The match would be riddled with stoppages, sometimes multiple stoppages before wrestling would even restart. Finally, after about 15 minutes, and the use of all blood time, Bagoly won by injury default.
The match would then get out of control for the Bulldogs. Following a victory by Wilson's Tommy O'Brien at 182, Denny Karas (JR, 195) recorded a first period fall, followed by wins from Michael Crane (JR, 220), Oscar Daniels (SR, 285) and Jacob Keller (FR, 106) by major decision, forfeit, and technical fall, respectively. All said and done, the Eagles walked out with a 51-20 victory. The Eagles are 5-0 in Berks duals and have outscored their opponents 281-77, averaging more than a 42 point margin of victory.
The Eagles depth will be tested this weekend as they head to the BCIAA Individual Championships Friday and Saturday at Reading High's Geigle Complex. Exeter won their first championship in program history last year, and hope to be able to retain the title.#workday
• Click Here for the Dual Box Score
Grapplers Show Grit in 4-1 Run at Parkland Duals
The first weekend in January has been a bumpy one for the Exeter Wrestlers over the past several years. Marked on their calendar each year has been the Parkland Duals. Coach Rugg entered the duals as the team began turning the corner on their way to becoming a team of state ranking caliber. The level of competition and getting out of Berks County were the driving forces. This year, like all others, the competition was solid, and the boys battled to a program best 4-1 record at the duals. Exeter's first pairing was with the NY Catholic State Champions S-t. Anthony's. On paper the matchup looked to be a good one; however, key swings fueled a lopsided 48-22 Exeter victory. Jon Greenleaf (SR, 220) won the first swing bout with an impressive 11-3 victory over defending NYSHSAA Catholic State Champion Maguire Horl. Exeter's next big win was by Brandon Borton (SO, 120) as he pushed 2016 Catholic State Runner-Up Domenik DiBenedetto to sudden victory overtime. Borton took DiBenedetto down to his back and got the fall just 18 seconds into the sudden victory period. With the team score out of reach for the Friars, adding to the margin was Tyler Harkness (SR, 160). Harkness found himself trailing in the match when he locked up a cradle and rolled Chris Mulford to his back for the fall at 4:39.
Dennis Karas in on a leg.
The next two bouts the Eagles had prepared to win by significant margins facing two young teams on their way up. The first victory was a 46-24 win over Souderton. A nice highlight for the Eagles was at 152 where Matt Ward (JR) filled in for Gage Moran and won a hard fought 3-2 overtime victory. Delaware Valley was another opponent that's been rebuilding and putting a younger team on the mat. The Eagles again ran away with a 44-30 victory in that dual. Brandon Borton had a key win in that matchup, using an early on spladle for 4 points to push him on to a 7-4 victory. The big news coming out of this bout was the loss of Nolan Buck (SR, 182) - for at least the day - due to an injury, as Exeter headed into showdowns with #8 Council Rock and #18 Parkland.
The Council Rock South dual was the focal point of the entire gym during the 4th round of the duals. Two state ranked teams in #8 CRS and #11 Exeter looked to do battle. The match certainly didn't disappoint. The meet saw the two teams split individual matches evenly 7-7; however, too many bonus points for the Hawks pushed them to a victory 37-30 over Exeter. Big wins were posted by Ryan Watts (SR, 113), Chris Matthews (SO, 126), Austin Desanto (SR, 132), Tyler Harkness, Tyler Bagoly (SR, 170), Denny Karas (JR, 195) and Oscar Daniels (SR, 285).
How the Eagles would respond to their first dual meet loss of the season would be key in the next dual against Parkland. With little time to dwell on the loss, Exeter headed to Parklands home mat to face them in what has been a monkey on Exeter's back for many years. In 2015, Exeter met up with Parkland at the Cumberland Valley Duals and lost by the slimmest of margins - on criteria at the end of a tied dual. This matchup appeared to be just as close heading into the starting bout at 113. Ryan Watts gets Exeter on the board with a 3-0 win. David Wentling (JR, 120) stepped in to take on Parkland's heavily favored Brandon Kassis. Wentling surrendered a 16-1 technical fall, showing great fight and determination to not get pinned and save Exeter a valuable team point. At 145, Alex O'Neill (JR), like Wentling, battled off his back several times - holding Parkland's Kevin Vrablik to a 15-1 major decision, saving the Eagles another point or two. Matt Ward followed O'Neill's loss with a fall at 3:49. Ward's win started a run with Harkness and Bagoly following up with a fall and technical fall, respectively. Denny Karas and Oscar Daniels sealed the deal for the Eagles - each posting falls - to put the match out of reach by the narrowest of margins, as they escaped Parkland with a 37-36 victory!
Going 5-0 on the day for Exeter were Ryan Watts, Austin Desanto, Tyler Harkness, Tyler Bagoly, Denny Karas and Oscar Daniels. The 8-1 Eagles see their next action this Wednesday @ Wilson. The meet will start at about 6:30. The Eagles will then get back to the room for a day before they head to the Geigle Complex for the BCIAA Individual Tournament Friday and Saturday where they look to defend their 2016 county title. #workday
• Click Here for the Parkland Duals Results
Eagles Too Much For Muhls
The Exeter wrestlers again asserted themselves as top dog in the county with a convincing 65-9 win over a young Muhlenberg squad. The Eagles managed the lopsided victory despite having two starters taking some rest to heal some bumps and bruises. The match started off quickly - very quickly - with Tyler Harkness (SR ,160) with a fall in just :28 seconds. Not to be outdone, Tyler Bagoly (SR, 170) wasted no time in getting his pin in just :22 seconds. That is how the night would go for Muhlenberg, as they saw Exeter mow through the upper end of their lineup as John Harrell (JR, 182) added a first-period fall, followed by Denny Karas (JR, 195) and Jon Greenleaf (SR, 220) picking up a forfeit and injury default, respectively.
Things didn't get any better at the turn for Muhlenberg as Exeter's Jake Keller (FR, 106) needed just :35 seconds for his fall and Ryan Watts (SR, 113) received the last of the night's forfeits. With the Eagles out to an insurmountable 47-0 lead, Brandon Borton (SO, 120) was the first of only 3 bouts to go the distance. Borton continued Exeter's up-tempo pace and cruised to a decisive 5-3 victory. Chris Matthews (SO, 126) added his own fall, followed by a blizzard of takedowns as Austin Desanto (SR, 132) ran up a 23-7 technical fall in just 1:50.
Brandon Borton with a cross-face cradle.
Gage Whitman (SO, 138) saw his match go back and forth, getting caught in two big moves. The second was too much to battle back from, as Whitman was caught on his back for a fall midway through the second period for Muhlenberg's first points of the night. Chase Guldin (SO, 145) opened up his offense and ran up a 13-4 major decision. Guldin bounced back from an illegal slam late in the bout, and continued to score to secure the bonus point victory. Gage Moran (JR, 152) dropped a 5-1 decision to the Muhls top wrestler, in Stefahn Mayo (SR) who is currently ranked # 3 in the District. The Eagles will get back to work in the room and prepare for their next action this weekend at Parkland High School as they face their biggest tests to date in the Parkland Duals. Exeter will face St. Anthony's (NY), Souderton, Delaware Valley, #8 Council Rock South, and #18 Parkland. Wrestling starts at 9:15. #workday
Exeter Repeats as CV Holiday Champs
The team with their 1st place trophy
The Exeter wrestling team took to the mats at the 16th Annual Conestoga Valley Holiday Classic over winter break. The tournament typically provides the team with a good look at some District III opponents, as they head down the January stretch, and into the postseason. Winning titles for Exeter were Ryan Watts (SR, 113) and Austin Desanto (SR, 132). Watts used a technical fall over his opponent who is a returning VA 5th place state medalist. Desanto won by major decision (>8 point margin) en route to his 3rd consecutive CV Holiday title, and was awarded the tournament's Outstanding Wrestler award.
Ryan Watts in his finals match
Desanto OW award
Other finalists for Exeter were Tyler Bagoly (SR, 170), Denny Karas (JR, 195) and Oscar Daniels (SR, 285). Bagoly was stymied by returning PIAA AA Champion Jacob Oliver of Huntingdon. Karas dropped his 3rd decision of the season to Northern York's Jake Koser, and Daniels surrendered a 14-1 lopsided loss to Central York's Michael Wolfgram. Also, medaling for the Eagles were fourth place Jonathan Greenleaf (SR, 220), fifth place Justin Landis (SR, 138), and eighth place finishers Nolan Buck (SR, 182) and Chris Matthews (SO, 126).
Exeter outlasted runner up Central Mountain by a score of 200.5 - 195.0, in what was presumed to be the closest team race in the tournament's 16 year history. Exeter held a 3 point lead going into the final, and managed to increase their lead, despite dropping the last 5 bouts of the final round. Exeter will be back in league action this Wednesday, January 4 at Muhlenberg. The high school match (6:30) will follow the Junior High (4:30) dual. This coming weekend Exeter will be tested once again, as they head to the Parkland Duals in the heart of powerhouse District XI. #workday
• Click Here for the Final Brackets
• Click Here for the Final Team Score
Eagles Continue To Roll
The Exeter High School wrestling team continued their dominating roll in Berks County action with two dual meet victories over Reading High School (57-12) and Twin Valley (49-18). Wednesday night, the Eagles hosted Reading High School and got off to a quick start with Tyler Bagoly (SR, 170). Bagoly racked up a technical fall in just two periods of action. Nolan Buck (SR, 182) came up just short of a major decision with an 8-1 victory, followed by two falls from Denny Karas (JR, 195) and Jon Greenleaf (SR, 220) before Oscar "Big O" Daniels used an onslaught of takedowns for a 10-5 win.
Freshman Jacob Keller (106) had a big lead when he was caught for a Reading fall. Keller had run up a double-digit lead and was caught trying to roll through a cradle. David Wentling (JR, 113), Ryan Watts (SR, 120), Chris Matthews (SO, 126), Austin Desanto (SR, 132) and Justin Landis (SR, 138) rattled off a series of victories to push Exeter's lead to 47-6. Chase Guldin (SO, 145) lost by fall, but Gage Moran (JR, 152) and Tyler Harkness (SR, 160) closed out the dual with bonus point victories to push the Eagles to a final of 57-12.
Thursday, the team was back in action with Twin Valley. Starting at 145, Chase Guldin was battling hard when he was caught for a fall. Gage Moran battled back and forth for a tough decision at 152, leading the Eagles rampage as Tyler Harkness (decision), Tyler Bagoly (fall) and Nolan Buck (fall) went on to put them ahead for good. Michael Crane (JR, 195) stepped into the lineup and was dominating his opponent before slipping to his back and getting caught for a pin at the end of the period, with 0.2 on the clock. Karas moved up to 220 and got a quick fall, followed by a forfeit to Jon Greenleaf filling in at heavyweight.
Landis against Twin Valley
Jacob Keller needed little time to get a fall at 106. Jacob Steward filled in due to injury and was pinned by Twin Valley's CJ Morton. Watts, Matthews and Desanto took care of their opponents in dominating fashion before the finale that had the crowd on their feet. Twin Valley's Finn Tinsley used an early takedown and cradle to take a 5-0 lead on Exeter's Justin Landis. Landis fought hard off his back to get to the second period trailing. Landis continued with persistent attacks to close the gap, and his superior conditioning proved troublesome for Tinsley as he tied the bout with under 30 seconds to go. From that point forward, it was just a matter of time before Landis secured an early takedown in OT to wrap up the night with the Eagles out in front by a large margin. The team gets back to work over the holidays at the Conestoga Valley Holiday Classic in Lancaster on December 29 and 30. The Eagles won the team title last year. #workday
• Click Here for the Reading Box Score
• Click Here for the Twin Valley Box Score
Exeter Crowns Two, Takes Team Title At King Of The Mountain
KOM Tournament Championship team photo.
Mill Hall, PA - Exeter wrestling went into the prestigious King of the Mountain tournament with one goal in mind - wrestling better than they had the week before at Cumberland Valley. After a solid week of practice, consistently drilling on the exploited weaknesses of the competition before, the team seemed poised to perform better... and that they did. This isn't just your average weekend roll on the mat. The King of the Mountain has earned a reputation of one of the best competitions in the state. Boasting 51 state-ranked wrestlers in the semifinals (out of a total 56), the tournament definitely lived up to its billing.
Top performers for the Eagles were Oscar Daniels (SR, 285) and Austin Desanto (SR, 132) who took first place - along with Ty Bagoly (SR, 170) who posted a runner-up finish. In all, the Exeter wrestling team put 7 of their 14 wrestlers on the podium. Daniels and Desanto came into the tournament with #1 seeds, expected to be atop the podium at the end. Daniels made quick work of his opponents up to the final round, earning his 100th career victory in semi-finals - where it took him an OT win with a takedown to secure the title - for him, as well as the team.
Oscar Daniels 100th victory.
Desanto's road to the finals included (another) win over a state-ranked wrestler, and his finals bout saw him unchallenged by a Boyertown opponent who was a state place winner in 2016. Desanto's domination culminated in him being voted the tournament's Most Outstanding Wrestler. Bagoly saw great improvement over the previous week, while taking second place for the second week in a row. Bagoly's signature win of the tournament was a come from behind semi-final win over a 2016 PIAA 6th place finisher. While scrambles early on didn't end in his favor, Bagoly's conditioning and persistent attacks on his feet proved too much, advancing to the finals for a rematch from last year's KOM against Mifflin County's Trend Hidlay - PIAA Runner up last year. Hidlay's explosiveness from his feet and tough ride on top gave him the championship; however, Bagoly found himself down by only one point in the final 30 seconds - greatly improving on last year's matchup with the #2 ranked wrestler in the state.
Perhaps the most impressive run of the weekend was that of Justin Landis (SR, 138). Landis entered the tournament unseeded and left the tournament with 3rd place hardware. Landis' advantage that no one could match was his conditioning - registering multiple 3rd period comebacks to stay alive in the consolations. Next to Landis, Chris Matthews (SO, 126) showed impressive improvement. Another unseeded wrestler for the Eagles, Matthews fought his way through the bracket to land on the podium in 8th place. Matthews improvement on his feet was the key to his success.
Also placing for the Eagles were Denny Karas (JR, 195) in 5th place, and Jon Greenleaf (SR, 220) with an 8th place.
The Eagles get back to their dual meet schedule with back-to-back matches this week. Wednesday, the Eagles host Reading High School at 6:30 PM and Thursday we travel to Twin Valley for a matchup with the Raiders, also at 6:30. #workday
• Click Here for the KOM Final Brackets
• Click Here for the KOM Final Team Scores
Exeter downs Mifflin 57-18 on Big Brother Night
Matthew Skipper with
The Eagles took the mat last night as the defending county champions for the first time in school history. This night was equally as memorable because it was Big Brother Night, where our elementary wreslters are recognized before the match, as well as the start of season that marks the 50th anniversary of the program's inception. Every year, there is an elementary wrestler who is chosen for the "Ricky Ricketts Award", given to an individual who possess a good work ethic, leadership skills, and is coachable. This year, 6th grader, Matthew Skipper was the award recipient. Big Brother Night is always a great night for the program and a perfect way to lead into the varsity match with longtime rival, Governor Mifflin.
Jacob Keller earning his first varsity win.
The varsity match started at 126 pounds where senior, Ryan Watts, got things started with a fall for the Eagles. At 132 pounds, Chris Matthews lost an overtime decision to Mifflin's Kyle Seibert. Next up for the Eagles was returning AAA state 2nd place finisher, Austin Desanto. Much to the dissapointment of the crowd, Mifflin forfieted to Desanto. Mifflin followed that FFT with two falls to take the lead. At 160 pounds, Tyler Harkness got the eagles back on track with a decision. The rest of the way, the Eagles would only lose 1 more match, by decision, en route to a 57-18 victory over the visiting mustangs. Dennis Karas (jr, 195), Oscar Daniels (sr, 285), and Jacob Keller (fr, 106) earned falls for the eagles down the stretch.
Next up for the Eagles is the prestigious, 33 team, King of the Mountain Tournament at Central Mountain High School this Friday and Saturday. Live results can be found here. Good luck to all of our wrestlers this weekend.
• Click Here for the Match Results
• Click Here for Channel 69 News Coverage
Exeter Wrestlers Kick Off Season at Cumberland Valley
The Exeter Township Senior High wrestlers got their first taste of live action on the mats of Cumberland Valley in their annual Kick Off Classic on December 9th & 10th. The team took home a 6th place finish, while only entering a competitor in 12 of the 14 weights. Exeter placed 6 of their 12 wrestlers, led by a first place finish from 2016 PIAA AAA State Runner-Up Austin Desanto at 132 pounds.
Austin Desanto on the podium
Desanto went 5-0 on the weekend, posting three technical falls and 1 pin, before upending PIAA AAA 4th place finisher Chandler Olson of Shippensburg by a score of 6-2 in the finals, in a bout that wasn't nearly as close as the score would indicate. Dropping their first matches of the season in the finals for Exeter were Tyler Bagoly (170) and Jon Greenleaf (220). Bagoly dominated his way to the finals with two falls and a 5-0 shutout, before meeting Cumberland Valley's Quentin Milliken in the finals. Bagoly started off slow, falling behind early, but battled back to challenge at the end, ultimately dropping an 8-7 decision that had its fair share of questionable calls. Greenleaf used a 15-7 major decision to advance following a first round bye, and then scored a takedown in the waning seconds of the semifinal to score a 2-1 victory securing his place in the finals. The finals saw Greenleaf match up with Council Rock South's Joey Doyle. Doyle marched through the tournament with first period falls in each bout, including his final win over Greenleaf.
Justin Landis on the podium
Other's placing for Exeter were SR Oscar Daniels (285) 3rd, JR Denny Karas (195) 4th, and SR Justin Landis (138) 5th. Exeter returns to action opening their dual meet season at home on December 14th against perennial Berks power Governor Mifflin at 6:30 PM.
• Click Here for the Individual Match Results