Lebanon County wrestlers earn 7 sectional titles
Lebanon County wrestlers were involved in four District 3 sectional wrestling tournaments on Saturday and combined to capture seven titles.
In addition, 20 Class AA wrestlers and at least four AAA wrestlers qualified to move on to the District 3 Championships on Friday and Saturday at Hersheypark Arena.
In the AA Section II Tournament at Annville-Cleona, the host team had one champion - Josh Renninger at 138 pounds - and Northern Lebanon put up four winners. Three came in a row with Luis Negreiros at 160, Quinn Blatt at 170 and Luke Funck at 182, plus George Thompson at 285.
The two AAA winners were Cedar Crest's Barry Breidegan at 152 in the Section III Tournament and Leo Higgins of Palmyra at 220 in the Section II Tournament.
Northern Lebanon had 10 wrestlers advance to the finals, placed 12 in the top three and will take 13 to districts. The Vikings won the team title handily with 265.5 points, while A-C was fifth with 98.
"All in all, it was a good day," NL coach Rusty Wallace Jr. said. "I thought we wrestled really well in some of our losses, which were to really good kids."
Thompson's win at 285 may have been the highlight. He defeated No. 1 seed Robert Dunbar of Wyomissing, who was ranked first in the district. Trailing 1-0 with the final seconds ticking away, Thompson hit a single-leg shot and came out the back door after a scramble for the takedown just before the buzzer.
Wallace said, "George had a really good tournament and it was his birthday, too. He avenged an earlier loss to (A-C's) Brandon Light in the semifinals."
Also for the Vikings, Negreiros won 6-5 over Teddy Limberiou of Schuylkill Valley in the finals, Blatt defeated Colten Drawbaugh of Trinity 6-2, and Funck pinned Jarryd Kase of Kutztown in 44 seconds.
The Little Dutchmen's Renninger produced his crown by handing Zach Kelly of NL an 8-2 defeat.
Other runners-up for the Vikings were Dustin Breidegan (113), Trevor Leonard (132), Steve Herb (145), Hunter Wallace (195) and Matt Vines (220).
Palmyra's No. 4-seeded Higgins notched a pin in the first round, then scored a major upset, beating Cedar Cliff's top-seeded Jayden Demmy 5-0 in the semifinals. In the final, Higgins prevailed 9-6 over J'Michael Wedderburn of Hershey.
Barry Breidegan justified his top seed for Cedar Crest at 152. He scored pins in 1:01 and 0:45 to reach the final, then slipped by Kody Hart of Solanco, 7-5.
The Falcons also had a runner-up with Jarell Howard-Griffin (182) and a third with Ross Fisher (285).
Elco competed in the Section IV Tournament and placed six in the top six, but none in the top three. Three Raiders gained fourth place - Owen Neil (132), Jeremy Habowski (195) and Ryan Rolon (285).
Fourth-place finishers still have a chance to qualify for districts if their section's weight had the highest ranking compared to the other four sections.
Sectional Wrestling Tournaments
Section II at Annville-Cleona
106 — Kyler Anspach (Northern Lebanon), 3rd. 113 — Dustin Breidegan (NL), second; Hayden Funck (Annville-Cleona), 4th. 120 — Colin Leonard (NL), 3rd; Zach Renninger (AC), 5th. 126 — Colin Myers (AC), 6th. 132 — Trevor Leonard (NL), 2nd. 138 — Josh Renninger (AC), 1st; Zach Kelly (NL), 2nd. 145 — Steve Herb (NL), 2nd. 152 — Blaise Bressler (NL), 4th. 160 — Luis Negreiros (NL), 1st. 170 — Quinn Blatt (NL), 1st; Mark Wagner (AC), 3rd. 182 — Luke Funck (NL), 1st. 195 — Hunter Wallace (NL), 2nd; Alex Wilson (AC), 5th. 220 — Matt Vines (NL), 2nd. 285 — George Thompson (NL), 1st; Brandon Light (AC), 3rd.
Section II at CD East
170 — Malik Hatcher (Palmyra), 6th. 220 — Leo Higgins (Pal), 1st.
Section III at Hempfield
152 — Barry Breidegan (Cedar Crest), 1st. 182 — Jarell Howard-Griffin (Crest), 2nd. 285 — Ross Fisher (Crest), 3rd.
Section IV at Governor Mifflin
106 — Levi Brooks (Elco), 6th. 113 — Alex Puglio (Elco), 6th. 132 — Owen Neil (Elco), 4th. 182 — Quinten Miller (Elco), 5th. 195 — Jeremy Habowski (Elco), 4th. 220 — Tony Rodrequez (Elco), 6th. 285 — Ryan Rolon (Elco), 4th.