The final four. After two demanding days of wrestling at the District II Class 2A Championships four local wrestlers earned their way to Williamsport for the Northeast Regionals.
Blue Ridge’s Jordan Williams and Eli Aldrich will be joined by Montrose Freshmen Dylan Geertgens and Derrick DeMann in their quest to reach Hershey and the PIAA State Championships.
Williams was the top local finisher claiming second place at 170 pounds after losing a major decision to Wyoming Area’s Connor Wrobleski 14-0.
The Junior grappler began his quest to the title match with a pin of Tunkhannock’s Sean Meder early in the third period when he put the Tiger on his back at the 4:12 mark to earn a trip to Saturday’s semifinal.
Williams squared off against Mountain View’s Jeremiah Schwartz. The Eagle Senior stayed succumb to Williams’ attack early in the second period and Williams had his second straight pin at 2:20.
Geertgens trip to the Bronze began with a match against fellow Freshmen Jake Gizenski of Lake Lehman. Motivated by knowing a win guaranteed a placing Geertgens made quick work of Gizenski earning a 11-0 major decision.
“I just took him down fast and got some back points,” said Geertgens.
With a placing assured Geertgens focused on the task of taking on returning Northeast Regional Champion Dave Evans of Tunkhannock. The talented Meteor Freshmen wrestled tough in the first quarter before the more experienced Evans put him down with pin midway through the second period.
“It’s different, he’s just above everyone else, he has insane speed,” noted Geertgens explaining the experience of wrestling Evans.
Geertgens found himself in a rematch with Gizenski in the consolation finals with a trip to Williamsport on the line. Gizenski was intent on not going as easy this round, but a takedown in the first period proved to be all Geertgens would need to punch his ticket winning 2-0 to advance to Regionals.
“We both just wanted it more,” said Geertgens. “But I was able to get the points early and just kept him down the rest of the match.”
DeMann had a shorter road at 195 pounds and with only three contestants in the class was assured a trip to Regionals.
In his only match DeMann was taken down early in the third period when Lackawanna Trail’s Mark Dunckle fell DeMann at the 2:22 mark.
“I just got stuck in a move and he got me,” said DeMann.
Despite the loss DeMann is proud to be heading to Williamsport.
“It feels exciting,” said DeMann on his qualifying for Regionals in his Freshman campaign. “I’m just going to wrestle tough and try and get a medal.”
Aldrich qualified for Regionals at 220 pounds after falling to Western Wayne Sophomore Thomas Flood in the first round of their semifinal match.
Flood caught Aldrich late in the first period and recorded the pin with four seconds to go.
In the consolation finals Aldrich rebounded to earn a major decision 20-5 over Lackawanna Trail’s Tynell Bracero.
Montrose earned seventh place in the team standings as the Meteors got fourth place finishes from Nick Harder at 106, James Bixby at 113, and Brandon Soules at 120.
Also earning medals for the Meteors were Andrew Rosevear fifth at 132, Brendan Kanna fifth at 145 and Seamus Fish with a sixth-place finish at 285.
Blue Ridge placed eighth in the team standings as Williams and Aldrich were joined on the medal stand by fifth-place finisher Zach Consla at 182 pounds and with sixth-place finishes by Memphis Collins (106), Gavin Crawford (113), JD Heckman (152), and Logan Hodge (285).
Elk Lake finished tenth as Noah Atkins (160) and John Tyler (182) finished fourth while Todd Snyder took fifth at 138.
Mountain View finished right behind Elk Lake as Nathan Ofalt earned fourth-place at 145 pounds and Jermiah Schwartz did likewise at 170.