Plum wrestlers earn six medals at Eastern Area tournament
Wrestlers from 18 high schools battled for championships and top-six medals as the 2012-13 season kicked off at Saturday's Eastern Area Invitational Wrestling Tournament at Gateway High School.
Plum placed seventh in the team standings, as six Mustangs earned medals, while Gateway wrestlers picked up a pair of medals. The Gators placed 13th in the team standings.
The Mustangs were led by senior Jake DiGuilio (220) and Andy McRandal (170), as both earned third-place finishes.
Junior Eric Green placed fourth at 138, while sophomore Ronny Amato and freshman Tommy Zummo were fifth at 120 and 126, respectively.
Junior Zeke Bonura rounded out the Plum medalists with a sixth-place finish at 160.
“We had a lot of young guys in the lineup, and they got some good tournament experience,” Supak said.
DiGuilio went 4-1, with his only loss coming to eventual champion Cole Macek in overtime in the semifinals. He rallied to win two in the consolation bracket, including a 3-2 victory over Penn-Trafford's Ryan Winslow in the third-place match.
“Jake wanted a little bit more out of his semifinal match, but he wrestled tough in all his other matches,” Supak said.
McRandal lost his opening bout to Gateway's Austin Davison, but he rallied to win five matches in the consolation bracket.
He avenged the loss to Davidson in the consolation semifinals and beat Kiski Area's Dakota Lange, 3-1, in the consolation finals.
“Andy really turned it around and turned it up,” Supak said.
Green won his first match and then suffered a tough loss to eventual runner-up Paul Dunn of Bethel Park in the quarterfinals.He won three straight bouts in the consolation bracket before falling to Avonworth's Ean Disilvio, 12-7, in the consolation finals.
“Eric had a really good tournament,” Supak said.
Zummo wrestled at a varsity event for the first time and went 4-2. He rebounded from a loss to the top seed and beat West Mifflin's Carter Shar, 3-2, in the match for fifth
“Tommy had a very tough bracket,” Supak said. “I know he learned from all his matches.”
Amato lost to the No. 2 seed – Kiski Area's Ryan Hardaway – in his first match, but he rebounded to beat Norwin's Jake Friedhof, 9-6, in the fifth-place match for an overall 4-2 record.
“Ronny did a nice job of wrestling his way back,” Supak said. “It was tough having to wrestle the No. 2 seed right off the bat. It was a confidence builder for him.”
Bonura lost his first match to No. 2 seed Shawn McGowan, but won three straight matches in the consolation bracket.
McGowan got the better of Bonura again in the consolation semifinals, and he fell to Penn-Trafford's Craig Slepsky by fall in the fifth-place match.
Kiski Area dominated the team standings, as three Cavaliers wrestlers won titles, including 2012 state champion Matt McCutcheon at 195. Kiski had 10 of its 14 wrestlers earn medals.
Kittanning finished as the runner-up with one champion and 10 medalists overall.Belle Vernon and North Allegheny each had two champions.
Plum faced new section foe Hampton on Wednesday in a match that was to be contested past the deadline for this week's edition.
The Mustangs are slated to host Fox Chapel in a section match next Wednesday at 7 p.m.
Michael Love is a sports writer with Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-388-5825 or at firstname.lastname@example.org