York, PA - The Spring Grove wrestling team could have used plenty of excuses to sleepwalk through Saturday night's home match against Central York.
The Rockets had a guaranteed 18 points via forfeit and have a big date with South Western looming on Thursday for the YAIAA Division I championship.
But the experience of the defending league champs, coupled with the energy in the gym because of the team's Takedown for Cancer fundraising campaign, prevented any lethargy as the Rockets (17-0, 10-0 YAIAA I) dismantled the Panthers, 59-11.
"I thought we wrestled well tonight. Tonight was more than just a wrestling match," Rockets coach Tony Miller said.
The team announced it had raised $28,500 for the Heather Baker Foundation in a pre-match ceremony.
"I'm proud of them for multiple reasons," Miller said. "I'm very happy with the way they came out tonight."
One of three individual wins for Central York (4-14, 1-6 YAIAA I) came in the night's opening match as Isaiah Dickson rallied from a four-point deficit to knock off Spring Grove's Seth Wolf, 8-7, at 145.
The home team put the hammer down after that, winning the next eight matches with bonus points in all but one.
Mason Bentzel bumped up to 152 and recorded a technical fall to give Spring Grove the lead for good. Austin Barley won 5-1 at 160 to put the Rockets up 8-3.
John Gross' cross-face cradle led to a 36 second pin at 170, and teammate Andy Melhorn used a bar arm to get his pin at 182 in 53 seconds.
Three consecutive forfeits to Tyler Beckner (195), Alex Guinn (220) and Mike Lentz (285) extended the Spring Grove lead before Levi Witmer cranked Matt Houck over with a power half for a pin in 1:57 at 106.
"We work on (pinning) all the way through, from the bottom all the way to the top," Miller said. "Our pinners wrestled first tonight. I'm so fortunate with our guys up top."
The Panthers struck back at 113 as freshman Dylan Chatterton shocked the packed gymnasium with a pin of two-time district qualifier Derek Carlisle in 2:36.
With the match scoreless in the second period, Chatterton worked his way to his feet and reached back to sneak a headlock on Carlisle. The Rocket senior tried to roll through, but Chatterton maintained his positioning and secured the pin.
Chatterton moved to 18-1 on the season with the pin, but the Panthers were penalized a team point for his postmatch celebration.
Spring Grove won three of the final four to close out the match. Zack Clingan (119) and Mike Hartman (138) got pins. Hartman used a tight tilt for his fall while Clingan patiently countered a lateral drop attempt by Central's 23-match winner Sam Butler for a second-period pin.
Alec Zohrbaugh edged Xavier Musti at 126 for Spring Grove, while Central's Richard Blaine used a pair of five-point throws for a 10-5 overtime win over Keegan Worley at 132.
With the big win under their belts, the Rockets can now turn their focus to Thursday's match at South Western. Once again, the league title will come down to this backyard brawl.
"I'm sure it's on their minds, but our kids have been really good all year taking one match at a time," Miller said. "We don't overlook anyone because everyone of these (league matches) is a sectional seeding match. But I know where the focus is going now."
SPRING GROVE 59, CENTRAL YORK 11
145 -- Isaiah Dickson (CY) dec. Seth Wolf, 8-7; 152 -- Mason Bentzel (SG) tech. fall over Donald Crabill, 3:49 (16-0); 160 -- Austin Barley (SG) dec. Leonard Baker, 5-1; 170 -- John Gross (SG) pinned Tyler Colon, :36; 182 -- Andy Melhorn (SG) pinned Logan Minnich, :53; 195 -- Tyler Beckner (SG) won by forfeit; 220 -- Alex Guinn (SG) won by forfeit; 285 -- Mike Lentz (SG) won by forfeit; 106 -- Levi Witmer (SG) pinned Matt Houck, 1:57; 113 -- Dylan Chatterton (CY) pinned Derek Carlisle, 2:36; 120 -- Zack Clingan (SG) pinned Sam Butler, 3:15; 126 -- Alec Zohrbaugh (SG) dec. Xavier Musti, 3-2; 132 -- Richard Blaine (CY) dec. Keegan Worley, 10-5 OT; 138 -- Mike Hartman (SG) pinned Steven Clawson, 2:36.
Central York was penalized one team point at 113 pounds