Blairsville wrestlers rely on teamwork
BLAIRSVILLE--Blairsville's wrestling team is finding out first hand that hard work pays off.
On Saturday, the Bobcats for the first time won their season-opening Albert "Babbit" Liccioli Tournament, an event they've hosted for 26 years. The home team claimed the victory behind the strength of two weight class championships.
"(The win) is certainly a product of hard work," Blairsville wrestling coach D.J. Doak said. "The kids I have work so hard out there. They do anything I ask of them. They give me 100 percent in practice and it just shows out there on the mat."
Blairsville's highest finish prior to Saturday's victory was a third-place showing in 1996.
"It was a wonderful accomplishment, not only for the kids, but the entire program from top to bottom," Doak said.
Senior Matt Moore, who was one point away from winning the 152-pound PIAA Class AA state wrestling championship last season, captured the 160-pound crown at Saturday's tournament and also tied the school record for the most victories, with 112.
Moore, who compiled a 38-2 record last season, is determined to return to Hershey and become the first state champion in Blairsville school history.
Classmate Joel Rudy also took home a weight class crown Saturday, winning the 130-pound division.
Doak is stressing the importance of working together as a team. Blairsville topped Saturday's tourney in true team fashion, with six Bobcats advancing to the championship round.
The Bobcats have seven returning seniors, including Moore and Rudy.
Moore (160 pounds), Rudy (130), Glenn Carr (125), Rob Hamilton (171), Scott Hoe (135), Jeff Miller (135), Paul Newcombe (171), and juniors Jayme Borbonus (152), Scott Bukosky (119), and Paul Chakot (189) are expected to lead the veteran squad on the mat this year.
"All of these kids are leaders and it's a great team to coach," Doak said.
What might be even more promising are the naturally gifted underclassmen who are on the team this season.
Two examples are freshmen sensations Adam Weinell (103) and Ben Clawson (112), who turned in a stellar performance Saturday.
Weinell lost to the eventual weight class champion and Clawson lost by major decision in the championship.
After a major tournament to kick off the season, things seem to be headed in the right direction in Blairsville for Moore's state title quest and Doak's vision of taking his team to Hershey.
Blairsville competed yesterday against Johnstown. Tuesday the Bobcats are at home against Northern Cambria.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Tarentum restaurant closes to repair brick damage
- Thousands attend Vandergrift Light-Up Night, Christmas parade
- Hempfield Area High School senior Richason creates Before I Die wall in Greensburg
- Artists fill Valley home for one-day ‘Handmade Christmas’ sale
- Trib real estate writer Spatter ‘worked right to the end’
- Mirai debut brings fuel cell future closer
- In Steelers-Saints game, all eyes on Brown-Lewis matchup
- Bridge over Youghiogheny River coming into downtown Connellsville is renamed
- Steelers notebook: Defense has a retro feel
- Salvation Army in W.Pa. uses social media campaign
- ‘Boo-boo bus’ stuffed for kids