Penns Valley hands Blue Devils narrow two-point loss on the mat

Bellwood-Antis is in the midst of rebuilding the wrestling program that once registered 10 wins a year for six straight years, before falling into oblivion, often having to forfeit four or more weights. The trouble with rebuilding is that when you are so close, but not quite there, you suffer a bunch of very close matches that you just can’t get that one or two crucial wins that make the difference between winning and losing. It often comes in the middle of a match when a decision goes the other way and you spend all your energy trying to make up for it, but never quite are able.
At Penns Valley, the Bellwood-Antis Blue Devils came so close and yet dropped a 37-35 decision to the host Rams, on Saturday.
Bellwood-Antis broke out on top with pins in the first two matches, with Troy Byers (171) and Jimmy Watters (189) both nailing their opponents for falls.
Byers (3-14) opened the dual at 171, by yielding a takedown to Doug Mansel, to trail 2-0, after the two wrestlers went through the first period scoreless. Byers reversed Mansel to his back for five points, only to be reversed and put on his back himself. Down 7-5 at the beginning of the third period, Byers recorded another reversal and worked for the fall in 4:34.
Watters (8-10) wasted no time in getting a takedown and fall over Jaron Cunrod, in 1:29, at 189.
Penns Valley wiped out the 12-0 deficit quickly. Tyler Prisk received a forfeit at 215, and Ethan Covalt pinned Cody Smith in 3:29 to tie the dual 12-12. Covalt and Smith battled scoreless through the opening period, before Smith (2-2) took down to begin the second period and was turned and pinned by the bigger and heavier Covalt.
At 103, Troy Weyant (12-8) broke a personal four-match losing streak with a 5-2 win over Jacob Bierly to move the Blue Devils into a 15-12 lead. Weyant trailed 2-0 after one period, by took advantage of two penalty points and an escape in the middle stanza and then a takedown in the third period.
Josh Manning picked up Penns Valley’s second forfeit win at 112, and Ram senior Kelly Strouse used six second-period nearfall points on the way to an 11-0 win over B-A junior Donnie Partner (3-13).
At 125, B-A junior Shane Noye (7-9) led 2-0 after the first period on a takedown and then added a second-period reversal before showing Fred Dawson the lights at the 2:17 mark to draw Bellwood-Antis to within a point in the team score 22-21.
Tim Collier gave the Blue Devils the lead by recording a 15-0 technical fall over Chris Markle. Collier (4-11) led 7-0 after the opening period on a takedown and two sets of nearfalls, then 12-0 after two adding a penalty point, reversal and two more back points. In the third period, the B-A sophomore worked Markle the entire period, until scoring another three-point nearfall at the buzzer to record the tech fall.
The lead was short-lived, however when Tyler Myers pinned Cody Fink (5-13) in 0:56 to give Penns Valley a 28-26 advantage. Fink scored first, taking Myers down, but Myers reversed Fink to his back for the fall.
The two schools traded regular decisions at the next two weights, with Penns Valley maintaining their two-point team lead. At 140, Mark Solt made a first-period takedown the difference in a 3-1 win over B-A junior Dustin Pruznak (3-8). Then at 145, Ricky Shawley was able to double up Matt Orndorf, 6-3. Shawley (19-1) had a takedown in the first and escape in the second period, Orndorf a second-period takedown. In the decisive third period, Shawley registered a takedown and penalty point to just an escape by Orndorf for the victory.
At 152, B-A senior Ronnie Wilson (10-6) used three takedowns and an escape to lead Cody Bjalme 7-2, when he worked Bjalme for the fall just two seconds before the end of the second period. The win by Wilson pushed the Blue Devils into a 35-31 lead with one weight class to wrestle.
With Kyle Shawley (0-8) wrestling for the first time in two weeks, due to illness, Penns Valley veteran Eric Herrold led just 2-0 after the first period. Staring the second period on top, Herrold was able to turn and pin Shawley in 3:18 to give Penns Valley the win.
“Our kids went out and fought hard tonight, said Bellwood-Antis coach Ron Wilson. “Penns Valley has some good kids in their lineup, but we wrestled them all really tough. We didn’t back away from anybody. I said earlier that’s all we can ask our kids to do. We have lost a couple close ones this year that it would be nice to get back. But, we have a really young team and we will keep moving forward. Hopefully by the end of the season, we will be able to win some of those close ones, we are losing right now.”
Penns Valley won the junior high match 52-43. The Little Rams trailed 28-18 after the match at 165, but won six of the next eight weight classes, four by fall and one by forfeit and one by major decision, to forge an unbeatable lead.
Trevor Helsley (90), Buddy Shaw (122), Tyler Beech (138), Travis Taylor (145), Trey Campbell (165) all won by pin, and Danny Noye (105) and Nic Cover (155) both won by major decision for the Little Blue Devils.
Penns Valley 37 Bellwood-Antis 35
171 – Troy Byers (BA) pinned Doug Mansel 4:34
189 – Jimmy Watters (BA) pinned Jaron Cunrad 1:29
215 – Tyler Prisk (PV) won by forfeit
285 – Ethan Covalt (PV) pinned Cody Smith 3:29
103 – Troy Weyant (BA) dec. Jacob Bierly 5-2
112 – Josh Manning (PV) won by forfeit
119 – Kelly Strouse (PV) maj. Donnie Partner 11-0
125 – Shane Noye (BA) pinned Fred Dawson 2:17
130 – Timmy Collier (BA) tech fall Chris Markle 15-0, 6:00
135 – Tyler Myers (PV) pinned Cody Fink 0:56
140 – Mark Solt (PV) dec. Dustin Pruznak 3-1
145 – Ricky Shawley (BA) dec. Matt Orndorf 6-3
152 – Ronnie Wilson (BA) pinned Cody Bjalme 3:58
160 – Eric Herrold (PV) pinned Kyle Shawley 3:18.
Junior High
Penns Valley 52 Bellwood-Antis 43
110 – Orry Corman (PV) pinned Lincoln Stehley 4:08
115 – Pat Whitehill (PV) pinned Jeremy Isenberg 1:15
122 – Buddy Shaw (BA) pinned Jordan Kachick 2:02
130 – Adam Yarger (PV) pinned Christian Solecki 3:39
138 – Tyler Beech (BA) pinned Mark Strine 4:06
145 – Travis Taylor (BA) pinned Nate Besecker 3:24
155 – Nic Cover (BA) maj. Corey Sweeley 15-6
165 – Trey Campbell (BA) pinned Justin Dashem 3:26
185 – Elliot Dillon (PV) pinned Eric Miller 1:24
210 – Greg Witherite (PV) pinned Gerald Price 4:29
250 – Travis Lyons (BA) pinned Cody Guisewhite 2:16
75 – No match
80 – John Johnson (PV) won by forfeit
85 – Caleb Luse (PV) pinned Troy Boutiller 2:46
90 – Travis Helsley (BA) tech fall Joey McNitt 18-3, 3:55
95 – Logan Confer (PV) maj. Luke McFarland 9-0
100 – Neil Hosterman (PV) pinned Adam Davinsizer 1:25
105 – Danny Noye (BA) maj. Nate Brown 13-2.
85 – Zach Rutherford (BA) pinned John Johnson 0:35
115 – Matt Swartz (PV) dec. Damian Hughes 7-2
122 – Josh Stair (PV) dec. Jordan Simmers 9-5.