There have been a lot of good ideas in high school wrestling in the state and a lot of bad ones (see sub-regional and recent sectionals for examples of bad ideas).
I'm not sure who came up with the PIAA Team Championships, but the decision to stage a dual meet event with the best teams in the state has to rank up there as one of the best.
There were some kinks to work out when the event was first staged in 1999. Upper Perkiomen was not a good opponent for Bald Eagle Area in the finals, as the 53-0 score would indicate.
Many teams weren't on board with it in its inception, but the the tournament has evolved and expanded into a goal for most great teams.
The Duals give teams a chance to prove on the mat how good they are. If only Division I college football had the same thing.
Bedford went into the Giant Center with the Off The Mat No. 1 ranking in Class AA, but Schuylkill Valley proved it was better in two frustratingly similar matches in the quarterfinals and consolation finals.
Reynolds went into it with the No. 2 ranking, but it was obviously head and shoulders better than anybody in Class AA, winning by 32, 36 and 24 points in three matches, including a 42-18 win over Shady Side Academy in the finals.
Everyone around here has marveled at how good Central Mountain is, and the Wildcats are very good, but they weren't better than fellow nationally ranked Northampton, which beat them twice, 31-27 in a controversial quarterfinal and 36-16 in the consolation finals.
Class AAA champion Central Dauphin certainly proved why it's undefeated, blowing away Connellsville, 53-15, in the quarterfinals, getting by Northampton, 31-22, in the semifinals and outlasting Cumberland Valley, 34-30, in a rematch of the District 3 finals.
HOF to induct 12
The 21st District 6 Hall of Fame class will be inducted over the next two weekends before the respective Class AA and AAA championship finals at the Altoona Fieldhouse.
The District 6 coaches pushed for state champions from the 1930s and 1940s to be inducted over the next couple years, so the District 6 Hall of Fame Committee has voted 12 in, making it the biggest class ever. Five of them will be inducted posthumously.
The class ranges from the first District 6 wrestler to claim a state title in State College's Charles Ridenour, who won in 1939, to Mount Union's Thad Stewart, who won the 126-pound state title in 1982.
The committee also voted in 1947 Philipsburg High School state champions Dick Bainey and Mike Comitz, Tyrone state champ John Dickson (1944), Lock Haven High School state champs Ed Draucker (1940) and Lee Deitrick (1961), Bald Eagle-Nittany state champ Adam Waltz (1962) and Bellefonte state champ Joe Masullo (1949).
Contributors Norman Palovscik and Bill Wilt will be inducted, as will 1958 Moshannon Valley graduate Vic Stanley, the current coach at LaSalle College High School in the Philadelphia Catholic League.
Todd Irwin can be reached at 946-7464 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.