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Sun-Gazette wrestling all-stars
March 20, 2013 - Mitch Rupert
WRESTLER OF THE YEAR
Ryan Solomon, Milton
There's maybe only a handful of wrestlers in Pennsylvania who have had as dominant a season as what Solomon put together. The senior faced some of the top-ranked 195-pounders in the country in winning both the Beast of the East and the Hurricane Classic in Bethlehem in the matter of 10 days in December. Solomon was so dominant that the opponent he beat in the Beast and Hurricane finals, Ray O'Donnell of Saucon Valley, decided to move to 220 pounds after suffering the two losses to Solomon. O'Donnell eventually won the Class AA 220-pound title. Solomon pinned his three opponents at the sectional tournament in a combined 50 seconds, and his first nine postseason bouts ended with a fall. He became just the third state champion in Milton history and the school's career wins record holder.
COACH OF THE YEAR
Steve Budman, Hughesville
Budman has become as demanding a coach as there is in District 4 since returning to the program three years ago. He exposed his team to tough competition all year, and despite a 12th seed in the District 4 Duals tournament, guided the Spartans to a third-place finish in which it avenged a loss to Muncy from earlier in the season to claim their first-ever appearance in the PIAA Duals tournament. Budman coached six wrestlers to the District 4 tournament, and two to the state tournament, including Kyle Barnes, who finished fourth despite losing his first match of the tournament. He'll have a veteran and talented group returning next year, including state qualifier Zach Fry, and district qualifiers Trevor Sones, Dakota Nixon, Matt Herr and Robert White.
BREAKOUT PERFORMER OF THE YEAR
Ryan Preisch, Milton
Maybe no wrestler in District 4 felt he had as much to prove this year as Preisch, a junior. Coming off a disapponting 1-2 appearance at the state tournament as a sophomore, Preisch put together as impressive a postseason run as any wrestler in the state. He won a district and regional tournament which featured wins over state placewinners Kyle Barnes of Hughesville and Blake Marks of Southern Columbia. Preisch's lone postseason loss came in the state semifinals to eventual champion Austin Matthews of Reynolds.
(Wrestler, school, season record, career record)
Zack LeBarron, Warrior Run, 35-3, 35-3 ... One of the most dominant freshman in the district, didn't lose his first match until the semifinals of the Northeast Regional. ... Had a 33-match winning streak before suffering his first loss. ... 20 of his 27 regular-season wins came by fall. ... Finished third in the region before going 0-2 at the state tournament. ... East-Central Sectional champion. ... District 4 champion.
Tyrus Hamblin, Williamson, 20-2, 80-15 ... Junior missed the entire postseason after getting sick before the sectional tournament. ... Was 20-2 in the regular season for a 20-win Warriors dual-meet team. ... Had an impressive 7-2 win over Warrior Run's Eric Hunt in the Newport Tournament semifinals.
Zach Fry, Hughesville, 32-15, 32-15 ... Freshman became a hammer in the lineup for a team which finished third in the District 4 Duals tournament. Qualified for the state tournament going 1-2 with losses to the eventual champion and seventh-place finishers. ... Went 5-0 in the District 4 and PIAA Duals tournaments. ... East-Central Sectional runner-up. ... District 4 fourth-place. ... Northeast Regional runner-up.
Logan Everett, Williamson, 37-4, 143-18 ... Senior qualified for the state tournament for the third consecutive year where he went 1-2. ... The leader of a team which was the No. 2 seed in the District 4 Duals before dropping out. ... Won 34 consecutive matches before losing in district final. ... Army recruit. ... North Sectional champion. ... District 4 runnner-up. ... Northeast Regional third place.
Trevor McWhorter, Williamson, 35-7, 83-21 ... Breakout season for the junior who had the best postseason run of his career ending with an appearance in the state tournament where he went 0-2. ... Part of one of the best lightweight and middleweight corps of wrestlers in the district. ... Had a 25-match winning streak. ... North Sectional champion. ... District 4 and Northeast Regional third place.
Demetri Probst, Bucktail, 27-5, 52-10 ... Sophomore had another impressive postseason run before coming up one win short of a state tournamenrt berth. ... Became the Bucks' first two-time regional qualifier since joining District 4. ... West Section champion. ... District 4 third place. ... Northeast Regional fourth place.
Billy Barnes, Williamson, 37-5, 66-10 ... Sophomore qualified for the state tournament for the first time, losing to eventual champion Michael Racciato because of an injury in the semifinals before finishing sixth. ... Three of five losses came because of injury at states, other two came to state runner-up Colt Cotten. ... Had a 33-match winning streak. ... North Sectional champion. ... District 4 and Northeast Regional runner-up.
Ryan Preisch, Milton, 33-5, 94-18 ... Had a brilliant four-week run in the postseason where his only loss was in the state semifinals to eventual champ Austin Matthews. ... Only losses were to Pennsylvania and Ohio state placewinners. ... Finished eighth at prestigious Beast of the East. ... South Sectional, District 4 and Northeast Regional champion.
Isaiah Bobotas, Montgomery, 33-5, 92-29 ... Junior qualified for the state tournament for the first time, going 1-2 in Hershey. ... Had just one regular season loss which came up a weight on the second day of the season. ... Had a 24-match winning streak. ... Helped lead Montgomery to the No. 3 seed in the District 4 Duals tournament. ... West Section champion. ... District 4 and Northeast Regional third-place finisher.
Ben Minnich, North Penn, 34-7, 87-36 ... Senior became just the second state qualifier in North Penn's brief three-year history. ... Won the school's first-ever match at the state tournament in the preliminary round. ... Only District 4 170-pounder to reach the sectional, district and regional finals. ... West Sectional champion. ... District 4 runner-up. ... Northeast Regional champion.
Troy Hembury, Muncy, 42-2, 166-19 ... Senior became just the third three-time state placewinner in school history with a state runner-up finish. ... Only two losses this year were to eventual state champions (Dakota DesLauriers and Jacob Taylor). ... Won 39 consecutive matches after losing in Top Hat final. ... Broke school's career wins record by 21. ... Won first 10 postseason matches by pin, technical fall or major decision. ... Columbia recruit. ... East-Central Sectional, District 4 and Northeast Regional champion.
Ryan Solomon, Milton, 40-0, 142-14 ... Senior produced one of the most dominant seasons in District 4 history winning second straight state title. ... Had four wins over eventual state champions, and two more over state runners-up. ... Beat PIAA 220-pound champion Ray O'Donnell in the Beast of the East and Hurricane Classic finals. ... Finished career on a 67-match win streak. ... Broke Bobby Crawford's school wins record with first win at states. ... Pittsburgh recruit. ... South Sectional, District 4 and Northeast Regional champion.
Brandon Smith, Lewisburg, 36-2, 125-21 ... Senior had 35-match winning streak before losing in the state final. ... Only two losses came to state champions. ... Hammer in the lineup for a 20-win Green Dragons team that advanced to the District 4 Duals quarterfinals. ... Recorded 17 first-period falls. ... A three-time state qualifier and two-time state placewinner. ... South Sectional, District 4 and Northeast Regional champion.
Nate Kriner, North Penn, 33-6, 95-35 ... Senior had a 22-match win streak for the Panthers after the New Year with seven of those wins coming against district qualifiers. ... Two-time regional qualifier. ... All six of his losses came to either state qualifiers or state placewinners. ... West Sectional champion. ... District 4 and Northeast Regional fourth-place finisher.
(Weight, wrestler, team, grade, season record, career record)
106: Roshaun Cooley, Williamsport, so., 23-3, 48-7.
113: Eric Hunt, Warrior Run, so., 35-7, 57-13.
120: Kobe Galentine, Montgomery, so., 28-10, 55-17.
126: Keith Batkowski, Montoursville, fr., 33-9, 33-9.
132: Hayden Swartwood, Jersey Shore, fr., 25-12, 25-12.
138: Tyler Eubanks, Loyalsock, sr., 22-10, 57-42.
145: Garrett Hoffman, Montoursville, fr., 30-10, 30-10.
152: Kyle Barnes, Hughesville, sr., 39-6, 130-23.
160: Gavin Caprio, Central Mountain, so., 27-11, 52-23.
170: Justin Knee, South Williamsport, sr., 32-10, 87-48.
182: Blaze Buckwalter, Central Mountain, sr., 30-10, 116-48.
195: Skylar Ebner, Muncy, sr., 37-11, 120-36.
220: Cameron Porter, Central Mountain, jr., 23-11, 43-29.
285: Austin Fiedler, Warrior Run, sr., 22-6, 58-38.
Head coach: Jamie Yonkin, Montoursville.
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