Share This Page

Bentworth's Rothka on familiar ground

| Saturday, March 1, 2014, 12:11 a.m.

Bentworth senior Jake Rothka fought his way through a consolation bracket in the PIAA Class AA Southwest Regional championships last season to secure a spot in the state tournament at Hershey.

Rothka again finds himself on the brink of elimination at the regional tournament, but he gave himself a more favorable route this time.

Able to win his first-round bout Friday at the Cambria County War Memorial in Johnstown, Rothka avoided the arduous climb from the very back of the consolation bracket to a medal match. A quarterfinal-round loss knocked him out of title contention, but a win in his ensuing match kept him in the hunt for a third, fourth or fifth.

Semifinals and consolation quarterfinals begin at 11 a.m. today. The top five wrestlers in each weight class advance to the PIAA championships.

“Anything is possible, so you just can't give up,” said Rothka, a four-time regional qualifier. “When you're in the loser's bracket, you've just got to keep pushing, because the kids that fall from the winner's bracket, they're usually just done mentally.”

Rothka has tried to ingrain that attitude in Bentworth sophomore 106-pounder Hunter Neely, who fell to consolations after a quarterfinal-round loss.

Those two, senior 126-pounder Matt Vickless and senior heavyweight Mason Shumaker, are still alive in the tournament for Bentworth, which sent seven to Johnstown. Vickless and Shumaker also start Saturday in consolations.

“You've just got to find that place in your head that tells you to keep going,” Rothka said of reaching Hershey. “You can't stop.”

For Yough, senior 170-pounder Lucas Richardson and junior 220-pounder Tom Sever still have shots at third place.

Bill West is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at wwest@tribweb.com.

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.