HERSHEY — The first round ended in a blur for Cumberland Valley.
Delaware Valley took control of the bouts early on and didn’t let off the gas, rolling to a 45-22 win in the PIAA Class 3A Wrestling Team Championships first round at Giant Center on Thursday.
The Eagles struggled. That was clear.
The Eagles struggled because of missing bodies. Part of the lineup was out with either illness or some other ailment. Cade Reichart, their best 138-pounder, was out with the flu. A bunch of holes led to a match that dropped Cumberland Valley down into consolations and set them up for a rough two days.
“[Reichart] was out all week with the flu and not in school, and Jake Lucas at 170 pounds had the [sore elbow],” Eagles head coach Dave Heckard said. “My job as a coach is to get these teams prepared for what’s important. It got to the point where I knew what they had in the gun left, and I knew where we were at that point.
“We’re here to get our guys experience and get them healthy for next week. That’s what’s important for them.”
CV fell into a quick 9-0 hole just two bouts in with a loss at 285 (Connor Mundis lost 7-1 to Jose Falcon) and 106 (Ruston Dzielak was pinned in 2:52 by Joe Porco). Ben Monn (113) and Hunter Arbogast (120) got the Eagles on the board 9-6 with consecutive wins, but it went back and forth from there.
At 152, Cole McCoy got the pin in 1:19 against Damien Lobello. But the Eagles started to roll down the hill after that.
Matthew Barrick (160) fell into a quick hole, eventually succumbing 7-3 against Gavin Baranskas. A pin at 170 and a forfeit at 182 put the Eagles down 33-22.
At 195, Lukas Wandling had a slim chance to turn things around.
Wandling battled for a stretch despite Andrew Kidd recording takedown points early. But the Eagle made a mistake and Kidd got him on his back twice. The second time, right on the edge of the circle, Wandling was pinned for good, killing CV’s comeback bid.
“We knew they were a good team and we knew it was going to be a great matchup,” Wandling said. “It’s just part of the job, you have to go get it done. Being nervous isn’t going to really help you, so I just blocked it out and focused on that job to go get it done.”
The Eagles best outcome now is third place, and that run begins against Downingtown West at 10 a.m. Friday. The road ahead is tough and both Heckard and his wrestlers know that.
“[We just have] to end the season on a high note, really,” Wandling said. “Start strong, you gotta finish strong. That’s what we’re looking forward to doing.”
“I preached to them to just make it an individual thing,” Heckard said. “Just work for yourselves, and I want to see you guys compete. On to tomorrow morning and see what happens.
“I want everybody healthy leaving here.”
Colts fall to Spring-Ford
It was a back-and-forth match for the majority of the night with the Colts and Spring-Ford trading the lead more than once. It all came down to the 195-bout where Cameron Nelson needed to keep the team alive down 29-27.
The cards didn’t fall in the Colts’ favor and the PIAA Class 3A first round ultimately fell to a 39-29 defeat to the Golden Rams at Giant Center on Thursday.
The Colts were not fully staffed in the opener. Daniel Sigue went in for surgery this week on a torn ACL. And on Wednesday, 120-pounder Cole Baer was in a car accident. He was unavailable Thursday, but could return as soon as Friday.
“We’ll see where he’s at,” Colts head coach Rob Rapsey said about Baer, who was in a car accident Wednesday. “We still expected to come out and do everything we normally do. When somebody goes down we just hope the next guy comes in and performs, and I think we did pretty much performed pretty well.”
Cedar Cliff notched a couple of wins at 138 (Michael Cassidy) and 145 (Marcus Vassar) to go up 23-12, but Spring-Ford started its comeback at 160 with a pin from Joey Milano. A forfeit at 182 for Donovon Ball was the Colts last win, going up 29-27.
The Colts will wrestle in the consolation round against Archbishop Wood, which fell to Seneca Valley 58-9, on Friday at 10 a.m.