HERSHEY — Kollin Myers knows he is at his best right at the first whistle, right out of the gate.

The Boiling Springs’ junior faced his toughest test yet at the District 3 Class 2A Individual Wrestling Championships final on Saturday. The 145-pounder needed that great start.

Facing Pequea Valley’s Gabe Miller at Giant Center, Myers did just that. It earned him an 8-4 victory and district gold.

“I didn’t really think that was going to be me and him [when the season started]. I didn’t think I was going to gain that much weight to be honest,” Myers said. “I didn’t really know what he was going to do. Obviously he’s a tough opponent and I knew it would be a hard match. I just went out there and did my best and got the win.”

It took Myers just 15 seconds to get a takedown on Miller. Another takedown with just three seconds left in the first period put Myers in a prime position at 4-1.

Myers picked up an escape 46 seconds into the third period, then a takedown shortly after, putting him up 7-2 with less than 45 seconds left. Miller got a reversal to draw within one and let Myers escape, but could not get the tying takedown points after that.

Boiling Springs took home the team title with 169 points.

It was a similar game plan for Myers in his other matches at Hershey. He notched a takedown in under two minutes in the previous two matches.

“I’m always feeling great right off the bat. That’s when I do my most work and I feel stronger when I’m first going in, so getting that first takedown is definitely a confidence booster,” Myers said. “It sets the tone of the match for me and I just base my match off that.”

It didn’t translate into a dominant win this time, but that’s more a credit to the quality of the opponent.

“It feels great,” Myers said. “Coming after that loss here at districts last year, I really wanted that gold medal around my neck, so it feels good right now, especially against an opponent that I’m going to be seeing later on in these next couple tournaments. It feels really good.”

The next step for Myers and some other members of the Bubblers squad will be the PIAA Class 2A Individual Wrestling Southeast Regional on March 2. And Myers knows exactly what it’s going to take to get back to the big stage.

“Just getting to the next tournament right now it’s survival of the fittest, and that’s what you gotta do, you just gotta keep going to get to that next tournament,” he said. “Once you get above that level, that’s when you just go for the best you can. To get on the top of that podium, that’s what you gotta do.”

Austin Taylor nabbed a gold medal at 220 against Pequea Valley’s Joe Coblentz. After notching a takedown not even 20 seconds into the match, Taylor took no time in getting Coblentz to his back. The fall for Taylor came at just 53 seconds.

The Bubblers will send a total of nine other wrestlers to regionals: Andrew Stafford (eighth, 113), Colby Tennyson (seventh, 182), Collin Nester (silver, 126), Damon James (silver, 285), Jack Coulston (fourth, 132), Kaiden Karper (fifth, 152), Lucas Shoop (fourth, 138), Nick Kostyak (fifth, 170) and Zach Martin (fifth, 160).


Demark focused

Trinity’s Patrick Demark, who transferred from Cumberland Valley before the school year, has found his focus.

The 106-pounder notched his first district gold by defeating Biglerville’s Blake Showers 9-2. After falling in the Class 3A semifinals last season with CV and earning fourth, Demark has his family to thank for the win.

“It feels good. Last year I fell short, but this year I completed my goal and I did it with my siblings every step,” Demark said.

Being with the Eagles last season, Demark admits that he wasn’t the most focused student-athlete and his grades suffered. But everything started to come together when he arrived at the smaller private school.

“I felt like I needed to focus more because I knew that I was making a big transition, and I know with school, if I would mess up in school [at CV] then I can’t wrestle,” Demark said. “I have a lot better grades than at CV last year. That just makes me feel better on and off the mat and just as a person. The transition was good, but overall I’m happy with what I did at CV.

“I don’t have a lot of distractions, and I just feel more comfortable in a smaller school because I know if I mess up, everyone’s going to know that I messed up.”

That focus has made him a better wrestler.




He has former head coach Chris Bentley — who died suddenly in the summer — to thank for his success. Through regionals, and hopefully states, Demark is keeping the program’s first head coach in mind every step of the way.

“The goal is to win regionals, but the goal this year is to win states and I want to do it for Chris Bentley,” he said. “I’ve known him my whole life and he was the coach whenever I was just a little guy. I want to be motivated enough to do it, and I believe I can do it.”

As a freshman, Demark simply enjoyed his time in the state tournament. His goal was to get there. The rest was icing on the cake.


But he wants more this year.

“This year I want to win states, so during the state tournament I’m going to stay focused the whole time. I’m not going to get sidetracked or anything like that.”

Trinity will send three more wrestlers to regionals to join Demark: Caleb Bentley (seventh, 152), Colton Zimmerman (bronze, 138) and Maximus McMurray (fifth, 220).

For the other 2A locals, Camp Hill sends Luca Colestock (silver, 182), Micah Springer (seventh, 220) and Nate Teeter (sixth, 195) to regionals.

Email Mallory at mmerda@cumberlink.com or follow her on Twitter @MalloryMerda