Chuck grapplers fall to strong Raiders squad, 62-16

PUNXSUTAWNEY — The Punxsy Chucks grapplers could not handle a talented Brookville Raiders squad, falling 62-16 Tuesday night in Punxsutawney.

"I'm not unhappy in general... It was our fourth match of the year, and we wrestled a powerhouse," said Eric Eddy, Chucks varsity wrestling coach. "I thought the kids wrestled really well. We made some mistakes, but Brookville forces you to make some mistakes. Brookville has a fuller lineup, and it is a matter of us filling up the (wrestling) room (with more kids)," he said.

The Raiders took an early 6-0 lead when Tom Smouse picked up forfeit points in the 285 class.

Punxsy's Elijah Lambiotte faced Tate Ortz at 106 for the first bout of the night. Ortz opened with a takedown, but Lambiotte tied the match with a reversal. Ortz then scored a reversal of his own to retake the lead at 4-2.

Lambiotte was on bottom position to start the second period, and Ortz took advantage. Ortz flipped Lambiotte over and nearly pinned him, picking up five near fall points in the second period.

With a 9-2 advantage in Ortz's favor heading into the third period, he was able to claim the match via tech fall. 17-2, off a reversal and six points from near falls.

Punxsy's Andrew Bullers faced Cole Aaron in the 113 match. Aaron was able to get the best of Bullers with a pin 1:05.8 into the match.
Brookville grabbed an early 17-0 lead before Punxsy made a little run sparked by a pin from Joel Bowers over Devin Joiner just 46 seconds into the bout.

Next up was Kaleb Young and Brookville's Cole Clever. Young came out aggressively and picked up five early points off a takedown and a near fall.

Young was on bottom position entering the second period and pushed his lead by two points, 7-0, with a reversal. Young earned five more points in the third period with more near fall points.

Young nearly pinned Clever and had him on the brink of either a pin or tech fall win right before Clever maneuvered himself on top and picked up two points on the reversal, cutting Young's lead to 12-2. Young earned one final point with an escape and went to win the match 13-2, cutting Brookville's lead to 17-10.

Josh Shuckers then battled Brookville's Dalton Zimmerman in a low-scoring 132 match. The match remained at a stalemate until Zimmerman picked up two takedown points with three seconds left in the first period.

Shuckers was on bottom position entering the second period, and Zimmerman rode him the whole time with neither wrestler picking up any points. Zimmerman scored two points off a reversal in the third period, which earned him a 4-0 win.

"Shuckers only lost 4-0... He gave up a cheap takedown at the end of the first, and that completely changed everything," said Eddy.

Perry Arrington picked up Punxsy's second pin of the night over Dakoda Kellenberger in the 138-match. Arrington racked up a 12-0 lead heading in to the third period. Twenty-four seconds in to the third period, Arrington took Kellenberger to the mat and secured both shoulders for the fall to pull Punxsy within four points of Brookville at 20-16.

Coach Eddy was satisfied with the way Bowers, Young and Arrington performed Tuesday night.

"They did a real nice job... They took care of business... They did what we expected of them," said Eddy.

Punxsy's run was quickly ended when Brookville's Zach Vroman pinned Harry Batley. Vroman came out aggressive with a takedown, then put Batley's shoulders to mat just 43 seconds in to the bout.

Brookville's Jimmy Miller followed Vroman's example and earned another pin for the Raiders. Miller opened the match against Jeff Bottenhorn with a big slam to the mat for the takedown, then grabbed two points via the near fall.

Miller was on bottom to start the second period but after 45 seconds, he maneuvered his way to the top.

Miller had Bottenhorn in near fall position for nearly a minute as the Punxsy grappler did his best to keep both shoulders off the mat. After nearly 60 seconds of struggling, Miller was able to pin Bottenhorn with 7.9 seconds left on the clock in the second period.

Austin Clinger pushed Brookville's lead six points further with a pin on Justice Vance at 1:27 in to the 160-match.

Brookville's Brodie Zacherl was able to get the best of Travis Perry in the 170 match. Zacherl jumped to a 10-1 lead entering the second period.

Perry held off Zacherl as long as he could until he finally pinned him with 4.8 seconds left on the clock in the second stanza.

At 182, Taylor Cudworth earned another second period pin for Brookville over Punxsy's Brandon Wingert to extend the Raider lead to 50-16.

Chris Burchard picked up six more points for the Raiders with a forfeit at the 195 class.

Punxsy fell in the final match of the night, with Brookville's Nate Bonfardine pinning Austin Covatch 1:13 in to the first period.

The Raiders had claimed a 62-16 victory over the Chucks.

Brookville claimed both exhibition matches as well. Brady Minawieser pinned Stephanie Smith in the first match, and Josh Maring pinned Brett Starr in the second match.

"We were outwrestled by a good team," said Eddy. "We just have to get right back to work for Ridgway."

The Elkers travel to Punxsy Thursday to take on the Chucks with the junior high match starting at 6 p.m.