Lakeland smackdown: Buchanan claims dual-meet portion of league title with huge win over Brandywine

Published 12:02 pm Friday, February 9, 2007

By By ERIKA PICKLES / Niles Daily Star
NILES – It was the big wrestling showdown of the week. The match-up between undefeated conference rivals Brandywine and Buchanan.
Both teams entered Thursday evening's meet with 5-0 records in the Lakeland Conference and no one was really sure who would walk away standing alone in first place. However, half way through the night, it was obvious who the winner was going to be.
The Bucks wasted no time taking control and, after a close start, ended the night way ahead of the Bobcats to claim a 60-12 victory.
The victory guaranteed the dual-meet portion of the league title, as Buchanan finishes 6-0 in the conference, 26-4 overall. Brandywine ended 5-1 in the league and 32-6 overall.
"We were pretty banged up tonight," Bobcat head coach Rex Pomranka said after the match. "One of my best wrestlers is out and had screws and pins put in today. Plus, with all of the snow days, we just weren't really with it."
Before the start of the match, Brandywine did not have a legal weigh in.
"They were going to use Tuesday's weigh-ins for tonight. We gave them the option to weigh-in or forfeit and they weighed," Buchanan head coach Frank Mucha said.
Regardless of the outcome, Mucha said it was a good, hard match for both teams and he was pleased with the way the Bucks pulled through.
Buchanan was the first to put points on the board when Bryant Miller defeated Josh Hayden, 15-8, at 152-pounds. A pin from Joel Perry at 160-pounds over Aaron Leneway gave the Bobcats a 6-3 lead. A.J. Long (171) and Ryan Harrington (189) picked up the next two wins for Buchanan, putting the Bucks ahead 11-6.
Undefeated wrestler Jeremy Hechtl wasted to time pinning opponent Allen Michael Miller, which bumped Brandywine back in the lead, 12-11.
That was the last time the Bobcats would put any points on the board as Buchanan dominated the rest of the meet and won every match following.
Mike Connors (285) pinned Danny Eaglebarger. Ashley Lolmaugh (103) won by forfeit, as well as Tony Taylor (140). David Knisley (112) defeated Bryon Fisher, 10-6; Jon Beechler (119) pinned Robert Nickless; Todd Taylor (125) pinned Jeff Bridges; 130: Nick Wheatley (130) defeated Pat Van Laere 16-3; Drew Medlin (135) pinned Anthony Aguilar; and Auston Ferris (145) pinned Ben Gerber.
"We had quite a few guys who wrestled in different weight classes and it worked to our advantage," Mucha said. "Beechler wrestled tough for us, my 215-pound guy (Mike Connors) moved up to 285 and defeated their guy. (A.J.) Long did a nice job at 171. They all did a nice job."
Mucha said his squad will be ready to take care of business Saturday at the Lakeland Conference tournament.
"We have to finish ahead of Brandywine to be the outright champions. We are very tough as a dual-meet team, but maybe not as good as individuals. But our goal is to win it outright and not have not share the title like we did with Coloma a few years ago," Mucha added.
Pomranka said his team is going to regroup, and it was going to start in the bus ride home last night.
"We're going to go after them this weekend. We can still win the conference and we are going practice tough on Friday and get ready for the tournament," Pomranka said.
The Bobcats have home floor advantage as they will be hosting the tournament, which begins at 9 a.m.
Buchanan … 60
Brandywine … 12
103: Ashley Lolmaugh (BU) won by forfeit;
112: David Knisely (BU) def. Bryon Fisher 10-6;
119: Jon Beechler (BU) pinned Robert Nickless 5:58;
125: Todd Taylor (BU) pinned Jeff Bridges 3:04;
130: Nick Wheatley (BU) def. Pat Van Laere 16-3;
135: Drew Medlin (BU) pinned Anthony Aguilar 3:14;
140: Tony Taylor (BU) won by forfeit;
145: Auston Ferris (BU) pinned Ben Gerber 0:54.
152: Bryant Miller (BU) def. Josh Hayden 15-8;
160: Joel Perry (BR) pinned Aaron Leneway 3:54;
171: A.J. Long (BU) def. Brad Ritchey 16-2;
189: Ryan Harrington (BU) def. Kyle Jones 18-6;
215: Jeremy Hechtl (BR) pinned Allen Michael Miller 0:49;
285: Mike Connors (BU) pinned Danny Eaglebarger 3:45.