Golden Eagles open wrestling season by smashing Mo Valley

There is a saying that “The only way you can stay the same is by changing.” Changes come and go in high school wrestling.
About 15 or so years ago, someone came up with the idea of not starting every match at the lightest weight and ending it with the heaviest, but drawing weight classes out of a hat and wrestling the dual meet in that order. It never caught on because both coaches had to agree to doing it that way.
Now beginning this season, a weight class is drawn before the match begins. That weight class is the first weight wrestled. Then everything goes in order following that weight class.
In Tyrone’s season opener at home against the Black Knights of Moshannon Valley, which the Eagles put in the bag by a 59-15 count, J. D. Shaw and the Knights’ Scott Godin, wrestling at 140 opened the dual meet. Shaw scored first, receiving a point when Godin committed a technical violation. Godin then registered a takedown and three back points for a 5-1 advantage after one period. Although both boys tried hard, there was no further change in the score over the final four minutes to give Mo Valley a 3-0 team lead.
That was the only time all match that the Knights enjoyed the lead.
At 145, Eagle sophomore Adam Swayne, with red-dyed hair that appeared almost pink, escaped and scored a final period takedown to edge Matt Godin 4-3.
With the team score knotted at 3-3, Brice Mertiff got the first of four Tyrone pins decking Steve Rebo at 152. Mertiff, a sophomore, took Rebo down twice before just beating the buzzer at the end of the opening period, clamping Rebo at the 1:56 mark for the fall.
Tom Crowl was the next Eagle to notch a fall at 160, quickly getting Jim Selvage to his back for the fall in 0:51 to open an 15-3 Tyrone lead.
Tyrone senior Blake Cowfer wrestled a solid 7-2 match over Knight freshman Fred Disher at 171. Cowfer opened up a 2-1 lead after one period with a takedown, stretched the margin to 4-1 after two with a penalty point and escape, then added another escape and takedown for the win and an 18-3 advantage for the Eagles.
Moshannon Valley staged a mini-comeback to pull to within three team points over the next two weight classes.
First Tyrone forfeited to Larry Hayward at 189, moving Justin Clark up to 215.
Another change this year is the addition of another weight class, 215 pounds. This makes a total of 14 weights, unpopular with many, but 40 states already use a 215-pound weight class.
At 215, Josh Lewis proved to be a little too heavy for Clark, a junior in his first varsity match after not wrestling since junior high. Lewis garnered a first-period takedown and worked for the fall in 1:06 to shorten the Tyrone lead to 18-15.
“Last year we went in there at Mo Valley and I don’t think they were ready for us,” Tyrone coach Blair Packer. “This year, on the other hand, I knew they would comer here with the memory of the embarrassment and be ready for us. They did come at us, but actually, I think our kids handled it very well. I was very pleased with the way we wrestled this first match.”
That would be the last Mo Valley win however, with the Golden Eagles three forfeits, a tech fall and a pair of falls to finish the match in style.
“I was especially impressed with Adam Swayne in his first match,” said coach Packer. “He did a nice job, got a takedown late to win his match. Robert Waite at 103 looked really tough. He was like a Tasmanian Devil out there. He was all over and in that kid’s face. That’s the kind of matches we want to see. Robert put on a show tonight. Justin Clark is young and in his first match, we thought he might have a better shot at the kid at 215. Looking at the other kid and his weight now, we have to second guess ourselves, but he’ll be all right.”
Terry Tate (275), Richard Klapper (112) and Dane McCloskey (119) received forfeits to ease the way.
Newcomer Robert Waite scored a takedown and wrapped up Jon Cartwright of Mo Valley at 103, for a fall in 1:36. Brett Harris (130) and David Miller (135) ended the match with back-to-back pins and Thad Westley was all over his opponent for a technical fall at 125.
Westley notched five takedowns and a three-point nearfall in the first period against Josh Jacoby, added a takedown and three more back points in the middle stanza before adding a reversal that ended the match at the 4:20 mark with a 20-5 win.
Harris, who was losing 7-1 to Baron Berg before getting a defensive fall last year, left no doubt this time. Harris took Berg down in the opening period and reversed him in the second period, before applying the pinning combination in 3:48.
Miller was all over the Knights’ Brian McLaughlin, scoring three takedowns and a two-point nearfall in the first minute of the opening period, getting the fall at the 1:01 mark.
“We did really well tonight,” exclaimed Packer. “It looked like a first match and we seemed to get the ‘first-night jitters’ out of the way. We were a little rusty and timing was a problem. Overall you can’t be disappointed with a score like that. Having kids in the wrestling room to push the starters is really nice. The kids can feel someone looking over their shoulder and it helps them to practice harder and it does make all the difference in the world over last year.”
In the only junior varsity match wrestled, last night, Tyrone’s Curtis Weaverjumped out to a 10-1 lead before pinning the Knight’s Ryan Welder in 3:15. Weaver built up his lead with a takedown and three-point nearfall in each of the first two periods.
The Tyrone junior high team took advantage of 10 forfeits and used six pins to demolish the Moshannon Valley junior high 96-6.
Shane Emigh (85), Chris Miller (90), Shane Tate (95), Brady Williams (115), James Updike (130), Tyler Updike (155), John Miller (165), Heath Walk (185), Jeffrey Miller (210) and Brandon Oswalt (250) all received forfeits. Anthony Romano (80), T. J. Albright (100), Nate Smerekar (110), Sam McCloskey (122), Donald Conrad (138) and Chris Bradigan (145) won by fall.
In exhibition matches Shane Tate won by fall and Brandon Oswalt controlled his opponent for a solid 8-1 win.
Tyrone 59 Moshannon Valley 15
140 Scott Godin (MV) dec, J. D. Shaw 5-1
145 Adam Swayne (T) dec. Matt Godin 4-3
152 Brice Mertiff (T) pinned Steve Rebo 1:56
160 Tom Crowl (T) pinned Jim Selvage 0:51
171 Blake Cowfer (T) dec. Fred Disher 7-2
189 Larry Hayward (MV) won by forfeit
215 Josh Lewis (MV) pinned Justin Clark 1:06
275 Terry Tate (T) won by forfeit
103 Robert Waite (T) pinned Jon Cartwright 1:26
112 Richard Klapper (T) won by forfeit
119 Dane McCloskey (T) won by forfeit
125 Thad Westley (T) won by tech fall Josh Jacoby 20-5, 4:20
130 Brett Harris (T) pinned Baron Berg 3:48
135 David Miller (T) pinned Brian McLaughlin 1:01
103 Robert Waite (T) pinned Jon Cartwright 1:26
112 Richard Klapper (T) won by forfeit
119 Dane McCloskey (T) won by forfeit
125 Thad Westley (T) won by tech fall Josh Jacoby 20-5, 4:20
130 Brett Harris (T) pinned Baren Berg 3:48
135 David Miller (T) pinned Brian McLaughlin 1:01
Junior Varsity
160 Curtis Weaver (T) pinned Ryan Welder 3:15