(Pictured: Canon-McMillan's Josiah Gardner upends Norwin's Jackson Huss on the way to win by fall in the 145-pound bout of the team tournament. Photo Credit: Mark Mariette for the Observer-Reporter.)
CANONSBURG – Who says there aren’t surprises in wrestling?
Most of the fans felt Canon-McMillan would have little trouble defeating Penn-Trafford in the first round of the WPIAL Class 3A Team Tournament Wednesday night and they were right.
Most fans in the Canon-McMillan gym felt No. 3 Latrobe would get past No. 8 Norwin, but they were wrong.
Norwin upset Latrobe, 36-30, in the first round but there was little magic left over for the ensuing bout with the Big Macs, who rolled to a 56-9 victory.
The win advances Canon-McMillan to Saturday’s semifinals, 10 a.m. at Peters Township. A win in the semifinals assures a trip to Hershey for the PIAA Class 3A Team Tournament.
“I guess you could call it an upset,” said Canon-McMillan head coach Brian Krenzelak. “I know the coaches up there and they do a great job.”
The Latrobe match turned when the Wildcats heavyweight Wyatt Held suffered what appeared to be a dislocated elbow and was forced to default. That loss turned the bout Norwin’s way.
“The injury at heavyweight was a huge turn of events,” Krenzelak said. “I wish that kid nothing but good health moving forward.”
“We didn’t really plan on Norwin being there,” said Gabe Stafford, who had a pin against Norwin and a forfeit win against Penn-Trafford. “I think it was a good victory and I was happy the way things turned out.”
Like they did in the first-round rout of Penn-Trafford, the Big Macs built a nice lead, 14-0, and cruised to the victory in the quarterfinals.
“That’s what we look for. You always want to get out to a good start, get the team rolling,” said Krenzelak. “The kids feed off that energy. You put Binni out there and he is like a spark plug.”
Andrew Binni opened the dual meet with a technical fall over John White, 24-9, and Luke Shaffer followed with a 7-1 decision over Gage Mamie at 139 pounds. Josiah Gardner got Canon-McMillan’s first pin of the match, 2:28 over Jackson Huss at 145. That gave Canon-McMillan a 14-0 lead and room to breathe.
“(An early lead) helps us build momentum going forward,” said Stafford. “It’s also good going forward in this tournament. I really like our odds of being WPIAL champions, especially with all the work we’ve put in.”
Collier Hartman (107), Tyler Mizenko (114), Brandon Dami (121) and Josiah Gardner (145) each had a pin against Norwin.
A quick start propelled Canon-McMillan to a 49-15 victory over Penn-Trafford in the first round of the WPIAL Class 3A Team Tournament.
The Big Macs opened a 22-0 lead on the Warriors with the aid of only one pin, by Luke Shaffer at 139 over Nate Hernandez.
Andrew Binni opened the match with a 12-4 major decision over Hayden Coy to give the Big Macs an early 4-0 lead.
A 10-4 decision by Ryder Joseph over Logan Matrisch made it 7-0 after 133 and Shaffer’s pin made it 13-0. A 7-2 decision by Josiah Gardner over Dylan Clayton and a forfeit to Giuseppe Juliani at 152 made it 22-0.
Geno Calgaro (215) and Collier Hartman (114) also had pins for the Big Macs. Joe Enick (Hvy) had a pin for Penn-Trafford.
(This article was written and released by Joe Tuscano of the Observer-Reporter. The original article can be found by clicking here --> https://observer-reporter.com/sports/high_school_sports/schools_list/canonmac/big-macs-win-way-into-team-semifinals/article_6e657b96-a288-11ed-bf91-83f3e923773a.html)