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Tyrone senior wrestlers lead the way Eagles post 45-21 win over Altoona

It wasn’t senior night, that will come next week against Penns Valley. But the Golden Eagles three seniors all came through against Altoona on Tuesday night. First Brett Harris (130), then J. D. Shaw (152) and finally Blake Cowfer (171) each pined their Mountain Lion opponent in Tyrone’s 45-21 win over their Blair County foe.
“This team seems driven to beat a number of teams we’ve had trouble with in the past,” explained Tyrone coach Blair Packer. “We have had trouble with Altoona. The last couple of years, Altoona has put it to us pretty good. Tonight the seniors came through for us again.”
Brett Harris (23-9) took just 0:14 to show Scott Barnes the lights at 130, to give the Eagles a solid 27-9 lead. J. D. Shaw (9-15) and Matt Colombo were locked in a 2-2 tie in the final minute of the third period when the Tyrone senior turned Colombo to his back for the fall in 5:30. Colombo scored on a first period takedown and Shaw escaped in the first and second periods. In the Blair/Huntingdon County Tournament, Colombo edged Shaw 2-0 in the first round. Blake Cowfer (10-15) took Phil Luciano down early in the first period at 171, and quickly closed out the dual with a pin in 1:01. Shaw’s win put the match out of reach for Altoona.
The greatest strength for Tyrone all year, has been what for wrestling is a perfect combination-get lots of bonus points when you win and almost never give up bonus points to the opposition when you lose. Against Altoona, the Eagles worked that combination to perfection.
Max Soellner picked up his first varsity win at 215, by pinning David Salome in 1:37. Soellner (1-2) took a 5-0 lead early with a takedown and three nearfall points, then worked for the fall late in the period. Thad Westley (28-6) made short work of the Mountain Lions’ Phil Freidenberger, taking him down twice before applying the fall at the 0:59 mark at 125. Harris followed with his pin and David Miller decked Zac Apple in 3:11 at 135. After Apple hit the first points on a takedown, Miller escaped, took the Altoona junior down and turned him for three back points. In the second period, Apple chose neutral and Miller (35-8) notched another takedown before getting the fall midway through the second period.
At 275, Terry Tate (25-5) repeated a Blair/Huntingdon County Tournament win over Altoona heavyweight Bron Clouser. In the tournament, Tate won 7-2. This time, the Tyrone sophomore scored on takedowns in the final two periods plus an escape to begin the middle period. After a scoreless opening period, Clouser could manage just two escapes.
Robert Waite followed Tate’s win by downing Aaron Tippett 10-6 at 103. Waite (14-13) turned a 2-1 deficit after one period into a 6-2 lead with a reversal and nearfall in the second period and traded two more reversals for a takedown and reversal by Tippett in the third period for the win.
Justin Clark and John Finnegan opened the dual at 189. Clark (5-18) opened the scoring with a first period takedown and Finnegan tied it with a reversal in the second. Clark took the bottom position to begin the final period and Finnegan was able to turn him for two big back points that won the match 4-2 for an early 3-0 Altoona lead in the team score.
The Eagles then went on a run, winning seven of the next eight weight classes to establish a 33-9 advantage after the 135-pound match.
At 140, Adam Swayne and Josh Bender were locked in a thriller with all of the scoring occuring in the third period. Swayne (11-14) reversed Bender after beginning the period on the bottom. Bender escaped almost immediately and then hit a takedown at the buzzer to pull out a 3-2 win.
Brice Mertiff (19-10) pulled out to a 5-2 lead over Tom DeAntonio after the first stanza at 145. DeAntonio pulled to 6-4 with a takedown following a Mertiff escape in the second period, then escaped and registered another takedown with 10 seconds to go to squeak past Mertiff 7-6.
“Clark was tied going into the third period and just wasn’t able to pull it out,” said Packer going over some tough losses. “At 145, we gave in a real late takedown that cost us the match and at 140, we lost 3-2 on another takedown right at the buzzer.”
Chris Tremmel (6-13) was pinned by Brandon Norton in 3:00 at 160 in the only other match.
After Tyrone forfeited to the Lions at 112, Dane McCloskey edged by Greg Robertson 2-1. Robertson escaped in the second period and McCloskey (20-9) reversed Robertson early in the third period for what amounted to all the scoring at 119.
“The kids are really pushing now and of course we coaches are too. It’s starting to show up on the mat where the kids are more hungry. I believe the 8-4 record speaks for itself, but I thing it motivates them too to keep it going. We have three more weeks before districts and in that time, we still have some more work to do.”
In the preliminary match, the Tyrone Junior High posted a 58-34 win over Roosevelt, one of the two Altoona junior highs.
Johnny Miller (165), Heath Walk (185), T. J. Albright (100), Justin Schopp (105), Jacob Smerekar (110), Brady Williams (122) and Donnie Conrad picked up pins, Shayne Tate (95) received a forfeit, Josh Hunter (115) by major decision and Anthony Romano (85) and James Updike won regular decisions.
Tyrone 45 Altoona 21
189 – John Finnegan (A) dec. Justin Clark 4-2
215 – Max Soellner (T) pinned David Salome 1:37
275 – Terry Tate (T) dec. Bron Clouser 5-2
103 – Robert Waite (T) dec. Aaron Tippett 10-6
112 – Matt Freidenberger (A) won by forfeit
119 – Dane McCloskey (T) dec. Greg Robertson 2-1
125 – Thad Westley (T) pinned Phil Freidenberger 0:59
130 – Brett Harris (T) pinned Scott Barnes 0:14
135 – David Miller (T) pinned Zac Apple 3:11
140 – Josh Bender (A) dec. Adam Swayne 3-2
145 – Tom DeAntonio (A) dec. Brice Mertiff 7-6
152 – J. D. Shaw (T) pinned Matt Colombo 5:30
160 – Brandon Norton (A) pinned Chris Tremmel 3:00
171 – Blake Cowfer (T) pinned Phil Luciano 1:01
Junior High
Tyrone 58 Roosevelt 34
165 – Johnny Miller (T) pinned Edmiston 0:30
185 – Heath Walk (T) pinned Pierce 0:36
210 – David Williams (R) pinned Jeff Miller 2:58
250 – John Frederick (R) pinned Brandon Oswalt 2:04
75 – Travis Hammaker (R) pinned William Shauf 0:12
80 – Josh Potts (R) dec. Chris Miller 9-6
85 – Anthony Romano (T) dec. Brandon Potts 4-0
90 – Chris Smith (R) maj. dec. Shane Emigh 8-0
95 – Shayne Tate (T) won by forfeit
100 – T. J. Albright (T) pinned T. Wogan 0:45
105 – Justin Schopp (T) pinned Murtaugh 3:58
110 – Jacob Smerekar (T) pinned Peligrino 2:53
115 – Josh Hunter (T) maj. dec. Rudy 12-4
122 – Brady Williams (T) pinned Webster 1:18
130 – James Updike (T) dec. O’Neil 9-2
138 – Donnie Conrad (T) pinned Walter 2:17
145 – David Shields (R) pinned Chris Bradigan 1:54
155 – Koch (R) dec. Tyler Updike 4-3