Altoona's returning state champion D.J. Hollingshead will lead 51 area wrestlers into the Pennsylvania Junior Wrestling Championships this weekend at the Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza in Wilkes-Barre.
The tournament begins at 9 this morning with with the 8 and under wrestlers, 9:30 for the 9-10 group, 10:10 for the 11-12 group and 11 for the 13-14 age division.
Action resumes with the second round of consolations at 8 a.m. tomorrow for the 8 and under group, 8:20 for the 9-10 division, 8:45 for the 11-12 group and 9:15 for the 13-14 wrestlers. The finals are set for 5:30 p.m. for the 8 and under, 6:30 for the 9-10, 7:30 for the 11-12 and 8:30 for the 13-14.
Hollingshead, an Area 2 champion in the 13-14 age division at 112 pounds, captured the 100-pound crown in the 11-12 group last season.
Altoona's Cole Manley, an Area 2 champ in the 11-12 group at 75, will vie for a title after finishing second the last two years. Last year's runner-up finish came at 70 in 11-12.
Bedford's Jonathan Gabriel finished third at 75 in the 11-12 group last season, but he's coming off a second-place finish in the area to Penn Cambria's Nolan Link at 77 in the 13-14 division.
From all over
Wrestlers competing this weekend are from Altoona, Bedford, Chestnut Ridge, Penn?Cambria, Cambria Heights, Central, Northern Cambria, Portage, Philipsburg-Osceola, Central?Cambria, Huntingdon, Glendale and Claysburg-Kimmel.
Chestnut Ridge's Jared McGill and Justin McCoy are back after placing fourth and seventh, respectively, at 70 and 75 in the 9-10 group. They're in the same division and were area champs at 80 and 85, respectively.
Penn Cambria's Chase Proudfit, who was eighth at 65 in the 8 and under, returns after placing second at 70 in Area 2 to Bedford's Kaden Cassidy.
In addition to Hollingshead and Link, Ridge's Sam Shank (97), Kyle Winegardner (147) and Austin Buttry (252), Cambria Heights' Joe Davis (117) and Levi Niebauer (124), Tyrone's Elijah Sleeth (157) and Jared Beckwith (167) and Central's Kale Burket (92) will be going as Area 2 champs in the 13-14 group.
Joining Gabriel as an area runner-up are Philipsburg-Osceola's Chris Thompson (82) and Bub Lumadue (167), Huntingdon's Collin Glorioso (87) and Matt Norris (147), Bedford's Garret Thomas (112), Central's Mike Mock (117), Northern Cambria's Gus Yahner (132), Portage's Chase Fox (140), Ridge's Conner Buttry (157) and Heights' Aaron Gill (187).
Joining Manley as an area champ in the 11-12 are Central's Ethan Kennedy (85) and Jordan Quarello (105), Ridge's Blake Dunlap (90) and Heights' Biggie Gill (125).
Going as runners-up in the division are Huntingdon's Tyler Scott (85), Jonathan Wagner (105) and Jacob Oliver (115), Heights' Hunter Campbell (70), Central Cambria's Max Murin (75), Central's Brock Biddle (80), P-O's Dakota Weitoish (100), Penn Cambria's Jacob Driskel (125) and Bedford's Caleb Rush (200).
Heights' Tyler Kirkpatrick (65) and Portage's Zeke Fox (120) join Cassidy, McGill and McCoy as area champs in the 9-10 group.
In addition to Proudfit, Central's Brandon Holsinger (60), Altoona's Hunter Stoudnour (95) and Bedford's Cole Lingenfelter (120) are going as runners-up.
P-O's Hunter Weitoish (65) and Central Cambria's Corey Jones (70) are going as area champs. Altoona's Luke Hileman (45), P-O's Chase Chapman (50), Glendale's Brock McMillen (55), Ridge's Gryphon Callihan (60) and Claysburg-Kimmel's Cade Keithley (65) qualified as second-placers at Area 2.