JOHNSONBURG – A slew of Brockway underclassmen came up big Tuesday night as the visiting Rovers earned a 58-16 win over the Rams on the wrestling mat in Johnsonburg.
The Rovers got six wins by underclassmen, three by freshmen and another three by sophomores, and took advantage of four wins by forfeit for the runaway victory.
"A lot of our new guys ran into some young but experienced wrestlers," said Johnsonburg head varsity wrestling coach Mike Votano following the defeat. "We hung in there for a little bit but it seems like the experience that they have found a way to win by the end of the match.
"Our new guys have been improving and we're seeing better results with them but we just have to continue to work."
The dual started off at 182 pounds and the opening bout didn't disappoint.
After a scoreless first period, Brockway senior Casey Wolfe scored an escape off the down position against Johnsonburg's Mitchell Schloder for an early 1-0 lead. Schloder countered with a takedown near the one-minute mark for a 2-1 advantage before the two traded reversals to 4-3. In a flurry of quick moves, Wolfe caught Schloder on his back for the pin and early 6-0 lead.
"Mitchell [Schloder] had his opponent on his back and nearly pinned him but got rolled over," Votano said. "You learn to avoid that with experience but unfortunately he got caught on his back."
Forfeits at 195 pounds (Michael Martino), 220 pounds (Hunter Richardson), 285 pounds (Gavin Yahner), and 106 pounds (Ryan Carlson) padded the visitors' lead to 30-0. After no match at 113 pounds, Johnsonburg's Devin Mann earned a forfeit win in the 120-pound weight class to get the Rams on the board at 30-6.
At 126 pounds, Johnsonburg senior Johnny Ferragine dropped a 16-1 technical fall in 1:50 against Brockway freshman Mason Lindenmuth.
Lindenmuth started with an early takedown and kept the pressure on, racking up back points halfway into the match. He was awarded three back points with 1:04 on the clock and another three back points 30 seconds later for a 13-1 advantage. Lindenmuth caught Ferragine struggling on his back in the waning moments of the first period and tallied three more back points with 10 seconds left for a 16-1 technical fall.