Siegrist bows early from State Wrestling

By on March 12, 2014

siegristManheim Central’s Jared Siegrist seemed to be on track after rallying from a 4-1 deficit against North Hills senior Jonathan Avon in a State Triple-A 160-pound first-round wrestling match last Thursday.

The Baron sophomore’s second-period takedown pulled him even 4-4 and things were looking up.

It didn’t last, however.

Siegrist went on to suffer a 9-6 loss in that match and then was eliminated after dropping a 7-2 decision to Pennridge sophomore Kyle Gentile in the first-round of the wrestlebacks at the Giant Center in Hershey.

“(Jared) wrestled some pretty tough kids,” Manheim Central coach Troy Sunderland said. “The first-round match was a tough one, (but) he was in it. (Avon) ended up losing to (Central Dauphin’s) Garrett Peppelman in the semis, but I thought he was just sort of a step off. I didn’t think he was quite at his best. Maybe a little bit of nerves, his first time at States, I’m not sure. I think he was just making that transition from wrestling from Sectionals to Districts and then taking it to another level at the State Tournament.”

Although his first trip to the State Championships didn’t end the way he hoped, Siegrist finished with the season with a solid 31-6 record. With two years left in his high school career, the experience that he gained last week could still go a long way.

“There were a lot of things that he certainly improved upon from last year,” Sunderland said. “The thing I said all along about Jared is he’s solid in all three positions. I think for him to take that next step, he’s got to have those three or four moves that he can hit on anybody. He’s got a lot of good stuff on his feet that he hits a lot. He’s got to be able to hit it on those guys at the State Tournament and that will come.”

It was Avon (36-6), the eventual bronze-medalist, who hit a couple of moves on Siegrist in the first period, scoring two takedowns to go in front 4-1 heading to the second.

There the Indians senior won the flip and deferred, allowing Siegrist to take the bottom position. Following a quick escape, he caught Avon in an ankle pick for a match-tying takedown with 1:45 left in the stanza.

“I was hoping (Jared) had gotten back in the groove,” Sunderland recalled. “He put himself back in the match.”

Unfortunately though, Avon’s reversal with :52 left in the period gave him a lead he never relinquished.

“(Jared) just gave up a reversal there which hurt,” Sunderland said. “In big matches, reversals can kill you and that was tough.”

Leading 6-5 heading to the third, Avon opened up a 9-5 advantage on a takedown with 1:33 to go and that was all he needed.

Not long afterward, Siegrist was back on the mat looking to stay alive against Gentile (38-7), and he came out ready to go.

“I think Jared was the aggressor, but he just couldn’t get to a scoring position,” Sunderland said.

From there, Gentile got a solid shot, and although the first period ended in a 0-0 tie, Siegrist found himself spending a lot of time fighting it off.

The Rams’ senior, on top to start the second, eventually snapped the scoreless dual when he managed to get three back points against Siegrist with an arm bar late in the period.

“Jared had defended it and we thought it was going to be even … that was tough with two minutes left to go,” Sunderland said.

Gentile started in the bottom position in the third, but escaped with :13 elapsed to make it 4-0.
“The hope was Jared would be able to turn him, but then he got out relatively quickly and couldn’t really mount the comeback,” Sunderland said.

Siegrist scored a takedown with :58 to cut his deficit to 4-2, but then with the wrestlers back in the neutral position, Gentile’s late takedown sealed the 7-2 decision.

“I think after Jared didn’t qualify to States as a freshman, that was a hard realization for him that he didn’t want to let that happen again, so he came back and worked hard in the summertime and qualified to States,” Sunderland said. “Now it’s sorta like that next step that he’s taking. I’m looking forward to seeing what he does this summer with that desire and hunger to do more than qualify for the State Tournament.”

Bruce Morgan is the sports editor for the Lititz Record Express. He welcomes your questions and comments and can be reached at bmorgan.eph@lnpnews.com or at 721-4451.

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