Claysburg-Kimmel senior 113-pounder Josh Brown wore a broad smile as the gold medal hung around his neck Saturday night at the Altoona Fieldhouse.
Finally, after three attempts at gaining that medal, he was a District 6 Class AA Tournament champion.
Brown had reached the finals twice before and had to settle for second, losing to Cambria Heights' Ryan Dupas two years ago and Justin Patrick last year. Brown, however, avenged three straight losses to Patrick, including in the district and Southwest Regional Tournament finals, with a 6-5 victory.
Photo for the Mirror by Tami Ogline Knopsnyder
C-K’s Josh Brown (left) wrestles Ligonier Valley’s Justin Patrick in the 113-pound championship match on Saturday.
"This feels good," Brown said. "I took second twice, and it feels good to win the championship. I was just out there having fun because I was there twice. I could have had [a title] before, but I was nervous before. This is my third time, and I felt pretty good going into it."
"Boy, it's been awhile coming," C-K coach Dave Marko said. "Even from earlier today to tonight, his motion was much better. He was so much more attacking."
Two other area wrestlers won, and they were both from Moshannon Valley.
Moshannon Valley's James Stodart captured his second straight title at 195 pounds, rallying to beat United sophomore Tyler Oliver, 9-6. He's the first Mo Valley wrestler to win back-to-back district titles since Ray Albright won in 1984 and 1985.
"It means a lot," Stodart said. "Everyone is going to be happy when they beat a record that's over 20 years old. I want to congratulate [West Branch wrestler] Abe Albright's dad [Ray]. I was talking to him earlier, and if he said if anybody broke his record, he wished it was me."
One bout later, the Black Knights made more history as Jake Ludwig defeated Westmont Hilltop's Don Shovestull, 9-5, to capture the 220-pound crown. It's the first time Mo Valley has had multiple champions since 1989.
"That was our goal to beat that record too," Stodart said.
"Both James and Jake wrestled tough," Mo Valley coach Justin Fye said. "I'm proud of those guys."
Cambria Heights went 0-for-3 in the finals as Joe Davis (120), Levi Niebauer (152) and Aaron Gill (285) lost. Huntingdon's Collin Glorioso (106) also had to settle for second place. Nineteen area wrestlers placed in the top four to qualify for the regional tournament.
Davis was beaten by Ligonier Valley's Josh Patrick, 9-0. Blairsville's Andrew Doak - one of three Bobcat champions - beat Niebauer, 6-4. Gill dropped a 5-4 overtime tiebreaker decision to West Branch's Morgan Selepack. Glorioso lost a 4-2 decision to Forest Hills' Triston Law, whose brother, Cody Law (160) was voted the Outstanding Wrestler.
West Branch, which had two champs, including J.P. Hayles (132), captured the team title by eight points, 153-145, over Mount Union, Cambria Heights (139), Blairsville (138.5) and Penns Valley (131) rounded out the top five. West Branch coach Jason Bainey was voted the Coach of the Year.
Brown was on from the start against Patrick, displaying quickness and an almost unstoppable low single-leg shot. He notched two takedowns in the first period off of the shot - the second coming with 10 seconds left in the period.
"I work on them a good bit," Brown said. "I've taken him down maybe once a match with that, but he always came out on top."
"That was quick," Marko said. "Those two are like mirror images. You look at them from behind or standing side by side you wonder which one is which. Patrick is a stud. There's no doubt about it, but this was Josh's night."
Brown gave up an escape in the second after narrowly chinning Patrick, who earned his 100th win in his 12-3 semifinal win over Sage Moist, to his back.
Blood timeouts for Brown (nose in the title bout, eye in his 1-0 semifinal win over Central's Kale Burket] stopped the action throughout, but it didn't stop his low shot, which he hit for a third takedown in the third period. Patrick escaped and got a meaningless takedown at the buzzer.
Brown raised his arms in celebration, and after the referee raised his arm, he ran into the arms of Marko in celebration.
"I'm real happy to see him take that next step," Marko said. "It's a lot nicer standing at the top of the podium instead of the second row down. It seems like he's always missed it. He set the pace right from the get-go. The only time he was in trouble was at the edge of the mat."
Given their history, Brown and Patrick could meet again in the regional finals.
"I'd be happy to see it again in two weeks," Marko said. "That is a loaded weight class."
Oliver led Stodart 4-1 in the second period thanks to a takedown and reversal, but Stodart reversed and put Oliver on his back for three points, nearly pinning him before the buzzer sounded. After Stodart escaped in the third, Oliver took him down, Stodart reversed with 13 seconds left and rode the rest of the way.
"He got taken down off of his shot," Fye said. "I really wasn't worried because he's worked hard on top, and on bottom he stays in good position. I told him 'Sometimes even when you don't have your A game, and you win, it's a big thing.'"
Ludwig, who finished second last season, escaped in a scoreless second period, powered Shovestull to the mat for a takedown and two back points. Ludwig got a takedown in the period for a 7-1 lead. Shovestull made a third-period comeback, but Ludwig reversed late to set the final. He got a big hug from Fye afterward.
"Once again, he was going out there and going after it," Fye said. "He's got real good hips, so he stayed in real good position. He was the aggressor on shots. He's put a lot of work in to get where he is."
"I saw that [Stodart] won, so I didn't want to be the one that ruined it," Ludwig said.
KEY, TEAM STANDINGS
1. WB-West Branch 153; 2. MU-Mount Union 145; 3. CH-Cambra Heights 139; 4. B-Blairsville 138.5; 5. PV-Penns Valley 131; 6. H-Huntingdon 126; 7. MV-Moshannon Valley 122; 8. J-Juniata 106; 9. FH-Forest Hills 100.5; 10. LV-Ligonier Valley 92; 11. R-Richland 80; 12. WH-Westmont Hilltop 76.5; 13. SH-Southern Huntingdon 73; 14. MC-Marion Center 71.5; 15. U-United 68; 16. C-Central 66.5; 17. CK-Claysburg-Kimmel 49; 18. PC-Penn Cambria 47; 19. CC-Central Cambria 39; 20. P-Portage 37; 21. T-Tyrone 33; 22. BA-Bellwood-Antis 32.5; 23. G-Glendale 17; 24. JV-Juniata Valley 9; 25. NC-Northern Cambria 2.
106-Ostrowski, CC, maj. dec. Matson, LV, 12-0; Grassmyer, BA, pinned Kovach, G, :11; Bierly, PV, dec. Dautlick, CH, 4-2; Wiles, MC, pinned Cunningham, B, :53; 113-Bodenschatz, R, dec. Keiper, FH, 4-2; Dubbs, H, dec. Stevens, PC, 8-7; C. Decker, PV, dec. Sacolic, G, 7-0; Yost, WH, dec. Sankey, WB, 9-4; 120-Wilson, H, dec. Brown, WB, 4-2; George, R, dec. Foor, MU, 5-2; Whitsel, SH, won by forfeit over Fudalski, MV; Gilson, J, dec. Blackburn, WH, 5-3; 126-Quarello, C, dec. Albright, WB, 5-1; Rojas, G, pinned Gould, FH, 1:45; Hunter, T, pinned Caldwell, LV, 2:12; Zipf, WH, dec. Reid, J, 5-1; 132-Eckenrode, PC, maj. dec. Croyle, LV, 9-1; Thomas, CH, dec. Thomas, MV, 6-0; McCloskey, T, dec. Stewart, MC, 11-6; Barrick, J, tech. fall Pecze, B, 15-0, 3:58; 138-Heberling, MC, pinned Wagner, JV, 4:53; Wagner, H, dec. D. Farabaugh, PC, 4-3; Au. Gill, CH, pinned Fox, P, 1:32; Palmer, B, dec. Mock, BA, 12-5; 145-Ohler, MV, pinned Mack, U, 4:17; Templeton, FH, dec. Long, MU, 5-4; Green, WB, pinned Hommer, G, 2:42; Croyle, LV, pinned Hogue, PC, 2:50.
152-Slippey, WB, pinned Driskel, PC, 1:51; Getz, T, dec. Je. Wilson, BA, 4-2 OT TB; Ca. Kephart, P, dec. Benner, J, 4-2; Mock, C, dec. Fisher, H, 3-0; 160-Norris, H, maj. dec. Ju. Hammel, CK, 17-6; Myers, WB, dec. Waite, SH, 5-3; Waksmunski, CH, dec. Schropp, WH, 9-2; Beitz, J, pinned Stewart, G, 2:25; 170-B. Thompson, B, dec. Hershey, J, 8-3; Hurd, PV, dec. Barron, WH, 3-0; Stahl, U, maj. dec. Yahner, CH, 15-4; Co. Kephart, P, pinned Carbaugh, SH, :57; 182-D. Kylor, MU, dec. McDowell, WB, 7-3; Foster, J, maj. dec. Strayer, CK, 10-2; Stewart, MV, pinned Husar, P, 4:33; Shawley, LV, pinned Ponder, C, 2:03; 195-Lauer, H, pinned Pearce, WB, 3:58; Treaster, J, pinned Litzinger, P, :43; Schlosser, PC, pinned Little, C, 2:13; Tripodis, B, pinned Elder, CK, 1:41; 220-White, B, pinned Rudd, MC, 1:27; Wholaver, H, pinned Stapleton, MU, 3:35; Maines, WB, pinned Fitzgerald, J, 3:42; Deitman, U, pinned Carlheim, G, 4:45; 285-Smith, MU, dec. Culp, JV, 3-1; Wilkinson, PC, dec. Jo. Hammel, CK, 4-1; Bunnell, MV, pinned Roman, WH, 1:21; Mountain, U, pinned Ness, G, 2:10.
106-T. Law, FH, dec. Dorian, WH, 7-1; Glorioso, H, pinned Deliman, WB, 3:09; 113-Ju. Patrick, LV, maj. dec. Moist, MU, 12-3; Brown, CK, dec. K. Burket, C, 1-0; 120-Jo. Patrick, LV, dec. Opdenhoff, CC, 6-0; Davis, CH, dec. Schopp, T, 7-1; 126-Myers, SH, dec. Green, H, 2-0 OT; Boozel, MU, pinned Bloom, MV, 3:03; 132-Hayles, WB, dec. Walsh, WH, 5-2; Shields, SH, dec. Russell, H, 3-2; 138-Heggs, J, maj. dec. Hoenstine, C, 14-2; Naglic, R, dec. Bumbarger, WB, 2-1; 145-Tarr, B, tech. fall Nanna, J, 17-2, 4:44; S. Decker, PV, dec. Lynn, H, 6-2.
152-Doak, B, dec. C. Confer, PV, 9-5; Niebauer, CH, dec. Crook, MC, 2-1; 160-C. Law, FH, pinned Smith, MU, 3:17; Hazel, PV, dec. Torsell, BA, 6-4 OT; 170-Pecora, R, dec. Kristofits, WB, 5-3; C. Kylor, MU, pinned Pinkas, FH, :37; 182-S. Thompson, B, pinned Crawford, CH, 2:59; Rogers, PV, maj. dec. Hropovich, U, 14-1; 195-Stodart, MV, maj. dec. Kyle, MU, 13-5; Oliver, U, dec. Swartz, PV, 3-2; 220-Shovestull, WH, pinned Marsh, LV, :40; Ludwig, MV, dec. McLendon, PC, 9-2; 285-Aa. Gill, CH, pinned Moose, R, 5:26; Selepack, WB, pinned Shawley, BA, 4:24.
106-Ostrowski, CC, dec. Grassmyer, BA, 7-3; Wiles, MC, pinned Bierly, PV, 2:30; 113-Dubbs, H, pinned Bodenschatz, R, 2:45; C. Decker, PV, dec. Yost, WH, 4-0; 120-George, R, dec. Wilson, H, 2-1; Gilson, J, dec. Whitsel, SH, 7-0; 126-Quarello, C, pinned Rojas, G, 3:26; Zipf, WH, pinned Hunter, T, 4:32; 132-B. Thomas, CH, pinned Eckenrode, PC, 1:21; Barrick, J, won by injury default over McCloskey, T, 4:56; 138-Heberling, MC, dec. Wagner, H, 3-1; Palmer, B, dec. Au. Gill, CH, 5-1; 145-Templeton, FH, maj. dec. Ohler, MV, 12-4; Croyle, LV, dec. Green, WB, 11-6.
152-Slippey, WB, dec. Getz, T, 5-4 OT TB; Ca. Kephart, P, dec. Mock, C, 5-4; 160-Norris, H, dec. Myers, WB, 8-6; Beitz, J, pinned Waksmunski, CH, 1:40; 170-Hurd, PV, maj. dec. B. Thompson, B, 14-2; Co. Kephart, P, maj. dec. Stahl, U, 15-5; 182-D. Kylor, MU, dec. Foster, J, 4-2; Stewart, MV, dec. Shawley, LV, 3-2; 195-Lauer, H, dec. Treaster, J, 8-5; Tripodis, B, dec. Schlosser, PC, 8-2; 220-White, B, dec. Wholaver, H, 3-2; Maines, WB, dec. Deitman, U, 5-4; 285-Smith, MU, pinned Wilkinson, PC, 1:19; Bunnell, MV, maj. dec. Mountain, U, 13-5.
106-Deliman, WB, dec. Ostrowski, CC, 4-2 OT; Wiles, MC, dec. Dorian, WH, 7-1; 113-Moist, MU, maj. dec. Dubbs, H, 12-4; K. Burket, C, dec. C. Decker, PV, 4-2; 120-George, R, dec.. Schopp, T, 3-2; Opdenhoff, CC, dec. Gilson, J, 8-2; 126-Quarello, C, maj. dec. Bloom, MV, 8-0; Green, H, pinned Zipf, WH, 2:03; 132-B. Thomas, CH, dec. Russell, H, 10-8; Barrick, J, maj. dec. Walsh, WH, 10-2; 138-Bumbarger, WB, dec. Heberling, MC, 7-4; Hoenstine, C, dec. Palmer, B, 6-4 OT; 145-Lynn, H, maj. dec. Templeton, FH, 12-0; Nanna, J, maj. dec. Croyle, LV, 13-5.
152-Slippey, WB, dec. Crook, MC, 3-1; C. Confer, PV, dec. Ca. Kephart, P, 5-2; 160-Norris, H, dec. Torsell, BA, 6-5; Smith, MU, dec. Beitz, J, 4-3; 170-Pinkas, FH, pinned Hurd, PV, 4:47; Co. Kephart, P, dec. Kristofits, WB, 5-2; 182-Hropovich, U, pinned D. Kylor, MU, 4:28; Crawford, CH, pinned Stewart, MV, 2:19; 195-Swartz, PV, dec. Lauer, H, 3-1; Kyle, MU, dec. Tripodis, B, 3-2; 220-McLendon, PC, dec. White, B, 5-1 OT TB; Maines, WB, dec. Marsh, LV, 8-5; 285-Smith, MU, pinned Shawley, BA, 4:59; Bunnell, MV, pinned Moose, R, 5:06.
106-Dorian, WH, dec. Ostrowski, CC, 7-5 OT; 113-C. Decker, PV, maj. dec. Dubbs, H, 15-1; 120-Schopp, T, dec. Gilson, J, 6-0; 126-Bloom, MV, maj. dec. Zipf, WH, 13-4; 132-Walsh, WH, dec. Russell, H, 8-2; 138-Heberling, MC, won by injury default over Palmer, B; 145-Templeton, FH, won by injury default over Croyle, LV.
152-Crook, MC, dec. Ca. Kephart, P, 3-0; 160-Beitz, J, tech. fall Torsell, BA, 15-0, 4:10; 170-Kristofits, WB, dec. Hurd, PV, 4-3; 182-Stewart, MV, dec. D. Kylor, MU, 8-5; 195-Tripodis, B, dec. Lauer, H, 5-2; 220-White, B, dec. Marsh, LV, 10-7; 285-Moose, R, pinned Shawley, BA, 1:13.
106-Deliman, WB, dec. Wiles, MC, 7-4; 113-K. Burket, C, dec. Moist, MU, 4-0; 120-Opdenhoff, CC, maj. dec. George, R, 10-0; 126-Quarello, C, dec. Green, H, 8-4; 132-Thomas, CH, pinned Barrick, J, 4:20; 138-Bumbarger, WB, dec. Hoenstine, C, 7-1; 145-Lynn, H, dec. Nanna, J, 4-3.
152-Slippey, WB, dec. C. Confer, PV, 5-4; 160-Smith, MU, dec. Norris, H, 7-5; 170-Pinkas, FH, dec. Co. Kephart, P, 5-4; 182-Crawford, CH, won by injury default over Hropovich, U; 195-Kyle, MU, dec. Swartz, PV, 5-1; 220-McLendon, PC, dec. Maines, WB, 6-0; 285-Smith, MU, pinned Bunnell, MV, 3:26.
106-T. Law, FH, dec. Glorioso, H, 4-2; 113-Brown, CK, dec. Ju. Patrick, LV, 6-5; 120-Jo. Patrick, LV, maj. dec. Davis, CH, 9-0; 126-Myers, SH, dec. Boozel, MU, 2-0; 132-Hayles, WB, dec. Shields, SH, 2-0; 138-Heggs, J, dec. Naglic, R, 6-4; 145-Tarr, B, dec. S. Decker, PV, 6-4.
152-Doak, B, dec. Niebauer, CH, 6-4; 160-C. Law, FH, maj. dec. Hazel, PV, 22-12; 170-C. Kylor, MU, dec. Pecora, R, 5-3; 182-S. Thompson, B, dec. Rogers, PV, 8-6; 195-Stodart, MV, dec. Oliver, U, 9-6; 220-Ludwig, MV, dec. Shovestull, WH, 9-5; 285-Selepack, WB, dec. Aa. Gill, CH, 5-4 OT TB.
Outstanding Wrestler-Cody Law, Forest Hills. Coach of the Year-Jason Bainey, West Branch.