Mustangs set to head east
The Plum varsity wrestling team will head east for the second year in a row and take part in the New Oxford Tournament on Friday and Saturday.
Twenty teams, mostly from the eastern side of the state, will be in action, and Plum returns four wrestlers — junior Eric Green, senior Jake DiGuilio, sophomore Nate Turchick and junior Andy McRandal — who earned medals at last year's event.
Last year's format was pool play on day one with the top finishers from each pool entering an eight-wrestler double-elimination bracket for day two.
Because the PIAA changed the scheduling rankings for different types of tournaments, the New Oxford Tournament, now in its 19th year, went back to a two-day double-elimination format, Plum head coach Mike Supak said.
“It's a interesting group of teams with a lot of different wrestling styles we don't usually see around here,” Supak said.
Plum is the only WPIAL team at the tournament, which also features a mix of AAA and AA teams.
Also scheduled to be a the tournament are Clearfield, Hanover, Central Dauphin East, Gettysburg, Greencastle-Antrim, Line Mountain, Lower Dauphin, Mechanicsburg, New Oxford, Northeastern, Palmyra, Philipsburg-Osceola, Pleasant Valley, Punxsutawney, Southwestern, Susquehanna Township, Waynesboro and West Chester Henderson.
Nineteen wrestlers slotted in the current AAA or AA state rankings are scheduled to compete.
McRandal, who went 5-2 last year at 170 and placed third, could match up with Mechanicsburg senior Joey Krulock, the fifth-ranked wrestler at 170 in AAA and a returning state medalist.
Krulock is 18-4 overall, while McRandal is 15-6.
Green, sixth at 132 last year, is 16-6 overall and hoping to improve on his place finish. He is in the 138-pound bracket.
DiGuilio and Turchick also picked up eighth-place finishes last year, and they did it at 220 and 160, respectively.
DiGuilio, 14-7 this season, will drop down to 195 for the tournament, and freshman Nate Hoff will make his varsity wrestling debut at 220.
Hoff has wrestled two JV bouts this season.
Turchick is at 182 for this year's tournament, and he owns a 13-6 overall record.
Freshman Anthony DiNinno (14-6) will wrestle at 106, while sophomore Anthony Borrasso (6-7) will do the same at 113.
The rest of the varsity lineup features freshman Tommy Zummo (16-8) at 120, junior Tyler Edwards (1-3) at 126, sophomore Josh Kunisky (4-7) at 132, senior Anthony Zummo (4-10) at 145, sophomore Zach Martin (16-8) at 152, junior Hunter Fenk (10-7) at 160 and junior Stephen Turchick (14-8) at heavyweight.
Supak said he's pleased to see the JV tournament continue, and junior Thomas McCoy (152), sophomore Richard Marino (138), junior Austin Baer (145) and Matt Blacksmith (145) will be in action.
Pittsburgh CC 37, Plum 30
Despite receiving forfeit victories at 106, 113 and 120, the Mustangs weren't able to score a victory over the Vikings in a Section 3 match.
Plum entered the match with hopes of snagging a spot in the Section 3 playoffs, but the Mustangs fell to 2-3 in their subsection behind Hampton (4-1), Central Catholic (4-1) and North Hills (3-2).
McRandal (182) scored a 4-0 decision victory against the Vikings, while Nate Turchick (195) earned a 2-1 win.
Stephen Turchick picked up six team points with a pinfall triumph at 285.
Michael Love is a staff writer with Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412- 388-5825 or at email@example.com.