TYRONE - Tyrone won the battle, but Altoona won the war.
Tyrone's D.J. Wunder edged Altoona's Mante Barnes, 2-1, in the night's marquee matchup, but the Mountain Lions used two falls, four forfeits and a decision to notch a 40-37 win over the Golden Eagles on Thursday at the TAHS gym.
Altoona held a 40-34 team advantage when Wunder and Barnes, a pair of unbeaten 195-pounders, hooked up in the 14th and final bout of the night.
Mirror photo by Patrick Waksmunski
Altoona’s Dylan Rodgers pins Tyrone’s Noah Tepsic in 1:04 during the 145-pound match Thursday night.
Barnes escaped with 1:44 left in the second period and held a 1-0 lead until Wunder reversed with just 37 seconds left in the third to notch his seventh straight win. Barnes lost for the first time in eight matches.
"In my mind, it was a tossup," Tyrone coach Blair Packer said of the Barnes-Wunder bout. "I didn't think either one of them had an edge.
"I knew it would come down to the end, but I didn't think it would end that way," Packer noted. "I honestly thought a takedown would decide it, but neither got a takedown. It was on the mat."
"It was a great match at 195," Altoona coach Joel Gilbert said. "We knew both wrestlers were undefeated and we knew that it would be the highlight of the evening.
"We ended up on the short end of the stick, but we'll go back to the drawing board and work on some things," Gilbert said.
Gilbert said he also thought a takedown would decide the Wunder-Barnes match.
"[Barnes] tried to slip a cradle on [Wunder] to try and keep him down on the mat," Gilbert offered, "but it wound up in a reversal and we caught our arm behind our back, and that's how the match ended.
"We were going for an escape ... but it was a great match," the Altoona coach added.
Despite the team victory, Gilbert wasn't overly impressed with the Mountain Lions' performance.
"I don't think we wrestled real well," Gilbert said. "I believe we're a better team than what we showed [tonight]. My hat's off to Tyrone. They wrestled us real well."
Altoona got falls from Dylan Rodgers  and T.J. Brandt  and a 15-2 decision from D.J. Hollingshead at 132.
"Our studs did their thing out there," Gilbert said. "Hollingshead and Brandt looked really good and Dylan Rodgers, too. We just moved him into the lineup tonight and he went out and got a fall for us. He's a senior and I was real happy with his performance.
"I see us in need of improvement," Gilbert said in assessing his team at the holiday break. "It's a long season and we have a few months to go before districts and our goal is to be the best we can at the district tournament."
Tyrone got falls from Ty Snyder , Nick Getz  and Jared Beckwith  and a decision from Aleic Hunter  in addition to Wunder.
"It was a great match for the fans," Packer said. "They got their money's worth. The matches that were contested were well fought."
The Tyrone coach noted his squad has battled some adversity but appears to be improving.
"We're dealing with some issues," he said, "but we're getting some kids back who were injured in football and we're coming together. We're still missing some spots, but that's something we've all got to deal with."
220-Walk, T, won by forfeit; 285-Smith, A, won by forfeit; 106-Bryan, A, won by forfeit; 113-Lannoo, A, won by forfeit; 120-Snyder, T, pinned Querry, 3:04; 126-Schopp, T, won by forfeit; 132-Hollingshead, A, dec. McCloskey, 15-2.
138-Hunter, T, dec. Bender, 13-3; 145-Rodgers, A, pinned Tepsic, 1:02; 152-Brandt, A, pinned Damon, 1:14; 160-Getz, T, pinned Dillen, 1:59; 170-Knode, A, won by forfeit; 182-Beckwith, T, pinned McCarthy, 4;23; 195-Wunder, T, dec. Barnes, 2-1.
Records: Altoona (1-1); Tyrone (1-6).