Blue Devils beat short-handed Eagles

BELLWOOD – The Tyrone wrestling team got bad news Thursday when it found out junior Jared Beckwith, a returning state qualifier, was injured in a morning automobile accident.

Still, the Golden Eagles, who had to forfeit Beckwith’s spot at 182 pounds, held a 17-point lead over rival Bellwood-Antis going into the final four weights.

The Blue Devils, however, won those last four weights, including Jeremy Wilson’s key 3-0 win over Nick Getz at 152, to secure a 38-35 win Thursday night.

“I feel really good,” B-A coach Ron Wilson said. “It’s a tough break for [Tyrone]. They had one of the better kids out tonight. I know our kids are thinking about him. I hope he gets better and returns real fast.”

“I thought we wrestled as well as we could have wrestled tonight,” Packer said. “Bellwood just had a little more firepower tonight. This epitomizes that it’s a team sport. It takes everybody in the lineup. It isn’t a one-man show, that’s for sure.”

Beckwith, Packer said, suffered a kidney injury when his car hit a patch of black ice while getting on Route 99 at the Bald Eagle exit, and he was taken to the Altoona Regional Trauma Center. Packer didn’t know how long he would be hospitalized or the extent of the injury.

“They at least wanted to keep him for a 24-hour watch,” Packer said.

“When I heard that, I was real sad,” Tyrone 195-pounder D.J. Wunder said. “I kind of took myself out of class. I thought he was real hurt, at first. I just really hope he gets better. I’ll be praying for him. He’s my best friend on the wrestling team.”

The meet actually started at 182 pounds, where B-A’s Bruce Knisely picked up a forfeit. After Wunder, who, like Beckwith, is second in the Mirror rankings, pinned Ethan Hunter in 47 seconds, B-A’s Keith Shawley won by forfeit.

Tyrone’s Dakota Walk moved up to 285 and pinned Ryan Boslough in 1:47. There was no bout at 106, and the teams traded forfeits at 113 and 120 to B-A’s Justin Grassmyer and Tyrone’s Ty Snyder, respectively, leaving the score at 18-18.

The Eagles won the next three weights. At 126, Jason Schopp rang up a 17-0 technical fall over Josh Wilson. And then Aleic Hunter and Luke McCloskey recorded pins at 132 and 138, respectively, giving Tyrone a 35-18 lead.

“We just got Hunter back from a knee injury,” Packer said. “He was coming off of an MRI he got done today. Pins by those two actually kept us close.”

“We gave up way too many bonus points,” Ron Wilson said. “We just can’t get pinned. But, that’s an experience thing.”

B-A’s Zack Mock started the comeback with a 20-4 technical fall over William Sessamen in 4:49 at 145. Jeremy Wilson, a sophomore and the son of the coach, broke a scoreless tie with Getz in the third period with an escape, and then he countered a Getz shot for a takedown.

“Jeremy’s been wrestling really well,” Coach Wilson said. “I think he’s won 11 out of his last 12 matches. He’s been some pretty decent kids. Tonight was a good, quality win. He’s a come a long way, and we’re really pleased with the progress.”

“I thought Wilson wrestled a smart match,” Packer said.

With the Eagles holding a 35-28 lead and Mike Decker set to pick up a forfeit win at 170, B-A’s second-ranked 160-pounder Nick Torsell built a 10-0 lead on Jacob Damon before putting Damon on his back again. The end came in 5:09.

“I was real happy with Nick going out there and wrestling,” Coach Wilson said. “Nick has been solid for us for a few years now, and we’re glad we’ll have him back next year.

“We have a pretty young team. We only have one senior in the lineup. Most of these kids wrestled in junior high last year, so it looks good for the future.”

The series between the rivals, once dominated by Tyrone, has gone B-A’s way two of the last three years. Both have losing records this season, but it’s still Tyrone-B-A.

“Like I said to the kids before the match, ‘This is Tyrone. I shouldn’t have to say anything to you,'” Coach Wilson said. “If you can’t get up for this kind of match, then you’re not going to be able to.

“It hits close to home for me too because I teach down there, and I see a lot of these kids. This is the one night when I’m not rooting real hard for their kids to do real well also.”

182-Knisely, BA, won by forfeit; 195-Wunder, T, pinned Hunter, :47; 220-Shawley, BA, won by forfeit; 285-Walk, T, pinned Boslough, 1:47; 106-No bout; 113-Grassmyer, BA, won by forfeit; 120-Snyder, T, won by forfeit.

126-Schopp, T, tech. fall Jo. Wilson, 17-0, 5:59; 132-Hunter, T, pinned Waite, 1:46; 138-McCloskey, T, pinned Dicken, 2:51; 145-Mock, BA, tech. fall Sessamen, 20-4, 4:49; 152-Je. Wilson, BA, dec. Getz, 3-0; 160-Torsell, BA, pinned Damon, 5:09; 170-Decker, BA, won by forfeit.

Records: Tyrone (3-16); Bellwood-Antis (6-11).