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The End Zone Seat: Drama Filled Regional Consolation Finals

As usual, some of the best bouts at the Northeast Regional wrestling tournament came in the consolation finals as grapplers battled for the final spot in Hershey for the PIAA championships.

Of the 14 consolation final bouts Saturday, three went into overtime and three others were decided by two points or less in regulation.

Among the nail-biters was Northeast Bradford's Jake Balchikonis's 3-1 overtime win over North Penn's Tyler Stettler at 160 pounds.

Bloomsburg's Remington Weigle defeated Dallas's Adam Goeringer, 4-2, in overtime at 189. Lewisburg's Sean Charest went overtime to defeat Mifflinburg's Nazar Mironenko, 4-2, at 285.

At 112 pounds, Mifflinburg's David Sheesley nipped South Williamsport's Andrew Gipe, 6-5, to advance to the PIAA tournament.

Troy's Braden Calkins won his 119-pound consolation final over Line Mountain's Mason Zimmerman, 1-0.

At 125, Mount Carmel's Nick Dusendschine outlasted Northeast Bradford's Zack Green, 8-6, for the final spot in Hershey.

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Calkins, Dusendschine and Charest improved their finishes from the previous week's District Four tournament to earn PIAA berths.

Calkins and Dusendschine were fifth in the district tournament, while Charest improved from fourth at districts.

Four other boys also improved their finishes to wrestle another week—Wellsboro's Brenton Acorn (140), Central Columbia's Ben Emmett (145), Danville's Kody Getkin (152) and Towanda's Garrett VanDeMark (171).

Emmett was fifth at the District Four tournament, while Acorn, Emmett, Getkin and VanDeMark were fourth.

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In the championship finals, there were also several close matches with five titles decided by two points or less.

Muncy's Troy Hembury edged Southern Columbia's Brian Watkins, 1-0, at 145 pounds.

Western Wayne's Casey Fuller defeated Mifflinburg's Ty Walter, 3-1, at 160.

Muncy's Ryan Hembury slipped past Lewisburg's Brandon Smith, 3-2, at 189.

At 215, Lackawanna Trail's Eric Laytos downed Milton's Ryan Solomon, 6-4.

Shamokin's Wes Tillett defeated Towanda's Aaron Schultz, 2-1, at 285.

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Eight of the championship finals featured the same matchups as the District Four finals the week before.

In all cases, the results were the same with the district champ defeating the runner-up in the regional final at 125, 130, 135, 140, 152, 171, 189 and 285.

Perhaps the most anticipated of the rematches was at 140 where Montoursville's Luke Frey faced Line Mountain's Travis Erdman.

Frey, who edged Erdman, 2-0, in the previous meeting, had a much easier time in the regional final, winning 6-2.

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District Two had one of its strongest showings in years, sending four wrestlers to Hershey.

Joining Fuller and Laytos at the Giant Center will be Meyers' Vito Pasone and Lake-Lehman's Austin Harry, who both qualified for the PIAA tourney with second-place finishes at 112 and 119 pounds, respectively.

Pasone lost to Line Mountain's Zain Retherford, 12-2, while Harry was pinned in 1:29 of his bout with Benton's Colt Cotton.

Four District Two wrestlers lost in the consolation finals—Goeringer; Western Wayne's Evan Decker (103) and Matt Rosensweet (215) and Meyers' Darren Stucker (135).

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Prior to the finals, the District Four Wrestling Coaches' Association presented a plaque of appreciation to retired Milton coach Bob Greenly, who served as an officer with the organization for many years.

Among those presenting the award were Wyalusing coaches Gary Haley and Walt Fisk, Towanda's Bill Sexton and retired Northeast Bradford coach Warren Schrepple.

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