Black Knights show more toughness in win over NB

By Todd Irwin

HOUTZDALE — After his team gave up eight pins against Everett on Tuesday night, Moshannon Valley coach Thad Walstrom spent 20 minutes before Wednesday night’s practice talking about what went wrong.

What was his message?

“We need to get tougher,” Walstrom said. “We can’t continue to get pinned. We were pinned eight times against Everett, and we shouldn’t have been pinned eight times. If we get pinned eight times, we have absolutely no chance of winning the match. You can’t make up 48 points.

Whether it was his speech or not that made the difference, the Black Knights took it to Northern Bedford on Thursday night at home, winning eight of the first nine weights, including key pins by seniors Carsyn Good at 126 and Micah DeLattre at 132, en route to a 46-33 win.

“It must have sunk in because we wrestled real well tonight,” Walstrom said.

“There were some surprise matches in there that I thought were tossups, and we gave up bonus points,” Northern Bedford coach Brian Dutchcot said. “You’re counting on those tossup matches, and it’s difficult when you lose them and give up bonus points.”

Trae Kitko got the Knights off on the right foot with a 16-3 major decision over Kyle Guyer at 285. Kitko notched six takedowns and three nearfall points to get a bonus win.

The Knights (3-4) picked up forfeits in the next three weights from Murray Lonesky (106), Jake Ball (113) and Austin Shoff (120) to take a 22-0 lead over the Black Panthers (6-6).

Good, who was 0-2 coming into the night, scored a reversal to take a 4-2 lead over Lucas Heck and cradled him for three nearfall points for a 7-2 lead after one period. Good was up 9-5 in the second period when he took Heck down, put him on his back and got the fall in 3:52.

“I had a talk with Carsyn before and said ‘Hey, you’re a senior and you need to step up,'” Walstrom said. “He said ‘I’m going to win tonight, Coach. I’m going to take care of it.’ And he did. He was offensive, shot some nice double legs, took him to his back and he really picked it up tonight.”

DeLattre took a 2-1 lead over Eyziak Cottle into the second period, where he almost immediately reversed Cottle to his back and pinned him in 2:31. The Knights were up, 34-0.

“At 132, we expected to get that win,” Walstrom said. “Micah pinned him last year. Micah has had some tough draws the last two matches, and he hasn’t complained one bit about wrestling (Glendale’s Brock) McMillen or (Everett’s Garret) Cornell. He got a match tonight where he could go out and be offensive and get the fall for us.”

Ian Sherlock (14-2), ranked No. 1 in the Mirror rankings at 138, halted the Knights’ stampede for a bit with a pin in 2:24.

Walstrom moved former state qualifier Alex Richner up to 145. The result was Richner (12-4) recording a pin in 45 seconds. Richner’s teammate Jon Dale (15-4), ranked No. 1 by the Mirror at 152 and also a former state qualifier, followed with a pin in 56 seconds, giving the Knights a 46-6 lead.

“Alex is a 132-pounder, but he’s sacrificing for the team,” Walstrom said. “He’s weighing in at 138, and most of the time he’s been moving to 145. Jon is a very big and strong 152-pounder. He’s going to score a lot of bonus points for us all year.”

“Those are two good quality wrestlers that they had back-to-back,” Dutchcot said.

The Black Panthers swept the last five weights, including a pin in 1:59 by Colby Imler, a 27-second pin by Austin Mowry (14-2) at 170 and a 52-second pin by Alex Fouse (11-1) at 182.

“Those guys got the job done,” Dutchcot said. “They got bonus points and continue to do well for us.”

After Luke Welsh won by forfeit at 195, Northern’s Jay Ebersole finished the meet with a 7-2 win over Scott McCoy at 220. Ebersole scored seven nearfall points in the second period to get the decision.

“Are upperweights are very young,” Walstrom said. “Some of those kids, this is their first year wrestling, so they’re just learning.”

The Panthers are back in action tonight against rival Bedford at home.

“It’s going to be another one of those close matches,” Dutchcot said, “where it’s going to come down to some tossups. I’ll count on my guys to do what they’ve been doing all year in picking up some bonus points.”

285–Kitko, MV, maj. dec. Guyer, 16-3; 106–Lonesky, MV, won by forfeit; 113–Ball, MV, won by forfeit; 120–Shoff, MV, won by forfeit; 126–Good, MV, pinned Heck, 3:52; 132–DeLattre, MV, pinned Cottle, 2:31; 138–Sherlock, NB, pinned Smith, 2:24

145–Richner, MV, pinned Donaldson, :45; 152–Dale, MV, pinned Clark, :56; 160–Imler, NB, pinned Daniel, 1:59; 170–Mowry, NB, pinned Sly, :27; 182–Fouse, NB, pinned Gresh, :52; 195–Welsh, NB, won by forfeit; 220–Ebersole, NB, dec. McCoy, 7-2.

Records: Northern Bedford (6-6), Moshannon Valley (3-4)

Exhibition winners: Smeal, MV; Wentz, NB

Referee: Larry Guenot