After a full day of competing against plenty of top wrestling programs, 10 area wrestlers are still alive in their respective championship brackets heading into Day 2 of the Trojan Wars wrestling tournament at CASHS Field House.
Chambersburg has five wrestlers preparing to battle in semifinal bouts on Friday morning (8:30 a.m.), while Shippensburg has four moving on to Day 2. Championship finals are scheduled for around 3:30 p.m.
Heading into the tournament, Shippensburg had a handful of wrestlers ranked in the top two of their respective weight classes, and all went undefeated in the first day of competition. Chambersburg is in a similar boat with three wrestlers entering the tournament in the top two, but a pair of sixth-ranked Chambersburg wrestlers made their way to the semifinal round tomorrow.
Greencastle-Antrim's Noah Ezolt (152) was not ranked in the tournament pre-seeds, but snuck his way into the semifinals with a pair of quality bouts. Ezolt earned a technical fall in 4:16 in the first round, then pinned his opponent Cade Linn of Southern Columbia in 1:18 to advance.
Ezolt will face No. 2 Drake Brenize of Chambersburg in the semifinal. Brenize had two pins, both in under 33 seconds, and a 14-1 major decision during Day 1.
Chambersburg's Seth Runshaw (120) was seeded sixth, but has advanced to the semifinal round thanks to an 8-0 major decision in the first round, and an ultimate tiebreaker upset over third-ranked Shane Casey of Southern Columbia by a score of 8-5. Runshaw will battle Connor Alexander from St. Christopher's (Va.) in a semifinal.
"In that bout Seth's conditioning really paid off," Chambersburg coach Matt Mentzer said. "He pushed the kid hard and got him pretty tired throughout and was able to push it through into overtime. At that weight there are seven or eight really good kids, but Seth's conditioning was a little bit better and he pushed it to the end to squeak it out."
Luke Nichter, a freshman, Chambersburg's sixth-ranked wrestler at 160, upset No. 3 Jackson Turley of St. Christopher's with a 10-3 decision in the quarterfinal. He will face Cameron Pine from Washington County in the semifinals.
"Turley is a real tough kid; we saw him at the Beast of the East last weekend, and I think he wrestled in the final last year (here), so we knew a lot about him," Mentzer said. "Nichter wrestled a really smart, physical match and earned some back points in the second period to make the third a little more comfortable."
Aaron Rump, the No. 2 seed in 138, claimed a place in the semifinals thanks to a pair of pins, including one in just 39 seconds. He will face No. 3 Tanner McHugh of Tamaqua.
But Rump's pin was not the fastest of the day for the Trojans. Top-ranked Drew Peck at 182 earned a pin in just 26 seconds in the quarterfinals to punch his ticket to the semis.
"Expectations are pretty high tomorrow," Mentzer said. "Of the five moving on we have two seniors, a freshman, a junior and a sophomore, so we have all four classes represented and I'm interested to see how the young kids in particular fair against top competition."
The Greyhounds' Cameron Tinner was the No. 1 seed at 285 and had no trouble getting through his two bouts. Tinner won scored a pin over Washington's Keith Beard in 1:34, followed by a tech fall in 2:11 over Central Dauphin East's Mahki Moore. Tinner will face John Fulmer of Southern Columbia in the semifinals. Fulmer was not seeded, but pushed through with a pair of pins in fewer than 35 seconds.
Second-ranked Jeffery Russell had a pair of pins to earn a spot in the 106 semifinals. His first win came in just 16 seconds with a pin over Greencastle's Kaylee Hengst, followed by a quarterfinal win over Big Spring's Wade Barrick. Russell will face third-ranked Noah Marrone of Washington County (W.Va.) in the semifinal.
Chandler Olson, the top-ranked wrestler at 132, moved on thanks to a pair of pins and a 14-5 major decision in the quarterfinal and will take on Nick Lilley of Downingtown West in the semifinal.
Another top Greyhound moving on is Cole Forrester at 195, who punched his ticket thanks to a close 3-1 decision in the first round and a 10-1 major decision in the quarterfinal. He will battle Donny Gelnett of Upper Dauphin in the semifinal.