HYDE — After a long Christmas break, the Clearfield Bison wrestling team returned to action Tuesday night, greeted by a packed Arthur J Weiss Gymnasium, and didn’t disappoint the home crowd, defeating previously unbeaten Bald Eagle Area, 32-22. The fans were treated to an old-fashioned dual meet, which featured 13 individual bouts being contested.
The visiting Eagles would jump out to a quick 10-0 lead as Gavin Guenot (10-5) pinned Zavier Lutz (2-1) at 106 pounds, and teammate Lucas Fye (10-2) recorded a 10-0 major decision over Bison Evan Davis (5-4) at 113. The Bison finally cracked the scoreboard at 120 with Adam Rougeux (2-4) earning a 12-3 major decision over BEA’s Owen Johnson (0-2) for a 10-4 Eagle lead.
In one of the most exciting bouts of the evening, Eagle Coen Bainey (12-3), fourth in the PIAA state AA tourney last year, moved up a weight class to wrestle Clearfield’s freshman phenom Brady Collins (8-2) at 126 pounds. Collins used a fireman’s carry for 2 and 2, building a 5-2 first period lead. Bainey recorded his own nearfall in the second period, ending the period tied 7-7. Bainey started in the bottom position for the third period and quickly reversed Collins. Brady quickly escaped but after many close takedown attempts came up on the wrong end of the 9-8 final.
Clearfield pulled a little closer at 132 when senior Nolan Barr (7-2) major decisioned Kevin Taylor (0-4), 13-3, but the Eagles would enjoy their biggest lead of the match, 19-8, after Jeffre Pifer (8-5) pinned Ty Aveni (1-1) in the first period at 138.
The Bison then went on a four bout winning streak, and six out of the last seven matches, to finally take their first lead of the night. Senior Luke Freeland (7-2) got things started at 145 with a 7-4 decision over Tate Yoder (1-6), followed by Will Domico’s (7-4) thrilling 5-3 overtime victory at 152. Trailing 3-1 late in the third period to BEA’s Mason Reese (5-6), Domico hit what looked like a tying reversal at the final buzzer. Referee Dick Wood conferred with the timekeeper at the head table and finally awarded the two points, eliciting a thunderous roar from the home crowd. Domico again thrilled the crowd, scoring the winning takedown with just 13 seconds left in the overtime period and making the team score closer at 19-14.
Senior Karson Kline (5-3), who reportedly was battling illness and was not expected to wrestle, drew the Bison even closer with a gutsy, 2-0 decision over Cameron Dubbs (5-5) at 160l. Scoreless after the first two periods and using most of his injury time, Kline surprised everyone, hitting a quick two point tilt off of the third period opening whistle. That would be the final score and pulled the Bison within two of the Eagles, 19-17.
Finally, in the 10th bout of the evening, the Bison took control of the dual meet 23-19 when senior Mark McGonigal (9-1) decked Nathan Fry (0-1) in the first period, pleasing the home crowd. BEA wasn’t going home without a fight and made it 23-22 when Caleb Close (12-5) edged Carter Chamberlain (5-3), 6-4, in the 189 bout.
But it would be the Bison’s night in the end as Hayden Kovalick (9-1) scored a late takedown on Noah Foltz (7-4) for a tough 3-1 win at 215, and senior Oliver Billotte (5-0) sealed the deal at 285 pounds, with a first period pin over an out-sized Matthew Knepp (4-6)to set the final at 32-22, keeping the Bison undefeated on the season at 5-0.
Clearfield will be back in action this weekend as they take part in the huge 46-team Mid-Winter Mayhem tournament on the campus at IUP.
(Article by Hank Wilson, special to Gant Daily)
|106||Gavin Guenot (Bald Eagle Area Hs) over Xavier Lutz (Clearfield Area Hs) (Fall 0:53)||0||6|
|113||Lucas Fye (Bald Eagle Area Hs) over Evan Davis (Clearfield Area Hs) (MD 10-0)||0||10|
|120||Adam Rougeux (Clearfield Area Hs) over Owen Johnson (Bald Eagle Area Hs) (MD 12-3)||4||10|
|126||Coen Bainey (Bald Eagle Area Hs) over Brady Collins (Clearfield Area Hs) (Dec 9-8)||4||13|
|132||Nolan Barr (Clearfield Area Hs) over Kevin Taylor (Bald Eagle Area Hs) (MD 13-3)||8||13|
|138||Jeffre Pifer (Bald Eagle Area Hs) over Ty Aveni (Clearfield Area Hs) (Fall 1:19)||8||19|
|145||Luke Freeland (Clearfield Area Hs) over Tayten Yoder (Bald Eagle Area Hs) (Dec 7-4)||11||19|
|152||Will Domico (Clearfield Area Hs) over Mason Reese (Bald Eagle Area Hs) (SV-1 5-3)||14||19|
|160||Karson Kline (Clearfield Area Hs) over Cameron Dubbs (Bald Eagle Area Hs) (Dec 2-0)||17||19|
|172||Mark McGonigal (Clearfield Area Hs) over Nathan Fry (Bald Eagle Area Hs) (Fall 0:52)||23||19|
|189||Caleb Close (Bald Eagle Area Hs) over Carter Chamberlain (Clearfield Area Hs) (Dec 6-4)||23||22|
|215||Hayden Kovalick (Clearfield Area Hs) over Noah Foltz (Bald Eagle Area Hs) (Dec 3-1)||26||22|
|285||Oliver Billotte (Clearfield Area Hs) over Matthew Knepp (Bald Eagle Area Hs) (Fall 1:02)||32||22|