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Barons grab Section crown from Garden Spot Man. Central 31, Garden Spot 30
By: BRUCE MORGAN Record Express Sports Editor email@example.com, Staff Writer
By his own admission, Manheim Central’s Kyle Ganse would have liked a re-do in his match against Lampeter-Strasburg’s Zach Byers last Tuesday, Jan. 24.
That 170-pound bout ended with Ganse losing by fall in 46 seconds.
"I tried something stupid and I got caught, so I was determined to make up for it (against Garden Spot) and get a win, especially in such a crucial match," the Barons’ junior said.
Ganse’s determination did, in fact, pay off as he scored a reversal at the buzzer, lifting him to a 7-5 conquest of Garden Spot’s Nick Kelley in the 182-pound bout. That win, coupled with Mitchell Gingrich’s fall in 2:43 at 170, got Manheim Central on track following an early 15-4 deficit and paved the way to a Section Two-clinching 31-30 win over the Spartans last Thursday night in New Holland.
Although GS took eight of 14 bouts overall, the Barons capitalized on key bonus points. Sophomores Kyler West and Will Middleton won by forfeit in the lower weights, while junior Manny DelCarpio added a fall and senior A.J. Votano scored a major decision.
"It was a tough year last year and it came down to this match again last year," Manheim Central skipper Troy Sunderland said. "So it’s a great win for our high school to come back this year and rebound the way these kids fought tonight. And I told them, ‘Every point is going to be important down to bonus points, and when you get an opportunity to pick them up, get ’em.’"
While knocking Garden Spot out of the top spot, the Barons (6-0 L-L, 10-6 overall) won their first Section crown since 2006. E-town captured the next four from 2007-10 before the Spartans dethroned them in 2011.
"These guys are fun to watch. There’s times," Sunderland chuckled, "(they) give me a high level of anxiety where they’re rolling around and doing some things, but that’s high school wrestling. We’re young, we have seven sophomores in the lineup … We’ve got some good classes coming up. So all of that momentum (from winning the Section), all those things that we’re trying to do, that just builds excitement with working with (Barons’ football) coach (Mike) Williams and his staff and trying to encourage some kids to come out for wrestling."
The Barons might have had some anxiety through two periods in the match-opening 132-pound bout, with Spot’s Tim Beegle’s sights set on a tech fall with a 14-2 lead against Cody Bucher. But the Barons’ senior scored the only three points in the third, including a takedown in the first 30 seconds and lost by a 14-5 major.
Although GS had a quick 4-0 lead, though, it could have been worse.
"All those little things, a little bonus point here or there, or a tech fall here or there, that becomes huge," Sunderland acknowledged.
Votano (22-8) responded at 138 with a major to pull the Barons even, taking an 11-1 lead after two periods against Will Finkey on a pair of four-point moves and then putting away the 16-2 decision.
But Spot took the next three bouts to grab its biggest lead of the night. L-L bronze medalist Rob King scored nine takedowns in a 22-7 tech fall over J.J. Sanchez in 5:30 in the 145-pound bout, then Tanner Leid held on for a 5-1 conquest of Ben Wise at 152 and Dakoda Leid used a spin-around takedown with :31 left to help seal a 6-4 win over Reid Pavlik in the 160-pound bout, making the score 15-4.
In a toss-up bout for the Barons at 170, however, Gingrich (11-9) stepped up big. Spot’s Matt Christie led 2-1 after one, but Gingrich escaped and scored a go-ahead takedown, then went on to flatten the Garden Spot junior in a time of 2:43.
"We bumped (Mitchell) up Tuesday (vs. L-S) and he got a big pin for us and changed the momentum and it was totally unexpected," Sunderland said. "So it’s exciting for him to have that time in the spotlight."
Ganse extended the momentum with his thrilling finish against Kelley at 182. Tied after two periods, Ganse’s reversal with 1:35 left gave him the lead, and then Kelley came back with an escape and a takedown to go in front 5-4 with :33 remaining. But the Central junior got the tying point on a locked hands call against Kelley and then Ganse pulled out the 7-5 decision with his reversal at the buzzer.
"I usually wrestle 170 and I was kinda nervous," Ganse said, "but I just needed to do my regular moves — moves I knew I could do. I was just really determined to get points to win. My hips came out a little bit and I just felt the reversal there, so I switched and I felt his shoulders pop down and I went back and got the two."
That sliced the Spartans’ lead to 15-13, but Ben Swarr (29-2) — the L-L silver medalist — got Central’s Rey LaSanta in a cradle for a fall in 4:19 in the 195-pound bout. LaSanta, though, did a solid job to keep within striking distance, 4-1, after two periods.
"Rey’s upset, but I thought he did a great job taking (Swarr) to the third period," Sunderland said. "All our kids wrestled well."
That includes DelCarpio (8-5), who decked the Spartans’ Mike Bressi in 1:53 in the 220-pound bout to again pull Manheim Central within two, 21-19.
"It’s really changed the dynamic of our team getting Manny back on the mat at 220 and Rey LaSanta came back out for the team," Sunderland said. "The two-pound weight allowance helped (David) Fantom down to 120. All those things sorta fell into place and it was great to see for our kids."
The heavyweight bout was a rematch of the L-L finals, in which Spots’ Josh Bloom pinned Central’s Aaron Lefever. This time, Bloom threatened for a first-period fall, but Lefever fought it off and went the distance. A stalling point against Bloom with :30 left in the third cut Lefever’s deficit to 5-4, but he would get no closer and Bloom held on for the one-point win to put GS up 24-19.
But West’s (20-15) forfeit win at 106 gave the Barons their first lead, and then Middleton won by forfeit at 113 to put MC up 31-24.
That left the Spartans needing to win the final two bouts, with bonus points in at least one of them, to pull out the team victory. Garden Spot’s Zac Martin defeated Fantom 10-4 at 120 and Nick Cook, the L-L champ at 126, needed a reversal with :26 left in the third to earn a 2-1 decision over Ben Metzler. But without bonus points, it wasn’t enough for the Spartans, who fell to 5-1 in Section Two.
"That’s tough wrestling and they’re two tough kids," Sunderland said. "There was nothing to be ashamed of and it was a great effort. With the pressure in the match not to give up bonus points for the team to win, he did that. But he’s capable of beating a lot of good kids."
From here, the Barons wrap up the regular season next Thursday hosting Elizabethtown and then they will prepare for the Sectional Tournament, slated for Feb. 18.
"We’ve got a lot of wrestling to go and we’ve got to get better," Sunderland said, "but the kids are starting to come together and rally behind each other. When somebody’s down, they pick them up and hopefully jump on the momentum of wins. It’s great to see." 132 — T. Beegle, GS, m.d. C. Bucher, 14-5 (0-4).
138 — A. Votano, MC, m.d. W. Finkey, 16-2 (4-4).
145 — R. King, GS, t.f. J. Sanchez, 22-7, 5:30 (4-9).
152 — T. Leid, GS, d. B. Wise, 5-1 (4-12).
160 — D. Leid, GS, d. R. Pavlik, 6-4 (4-15).
170 — M. Gingrich, MC, p. M. Christie, 2:43 (10-15).
182 — K. Ganse, MC, d. N. Kelley, 7-5 (13-15).
195 — B. Swarr, GS, p. R. LaSanta, 4:19 (13-21).
220 — M. DelCarpio, MC, p. M. Bressi, 1:53 (19-21).
285 — J. Bloom, GS, d. A. Lefever, 5-4 (19-24).
106 — K. West, MC, by forfeit (25-24).
113 — W. Middleton, MC, by forfeit (31-24).
120 — Z. Martin, GS, d. D. Fantom, 10-4 (31-27).
126 — N. Cook, GS, d. B. Metzler, 2-1 (31-30).
JV Score: GS 6, MC 3. More BARONS, page B-6