Senior Casey Cook was perfect in his bouts at 195 and 210 pounds at the Quakertown Duals held Saturday. Above, Cook locks up on his Pittston Area opponent in the opening match of the annual event, leading to a pin in the 210 bout.
Unlike most other high school sports, the beginning of the wrestling season typically gets off to a fast start. While other sports may start with a few non-league scrimmages, the beginning of wrestling starts with a dual meet tournament that includes three to four matches.
Such was the case for Upper Perkiomen’s wrestling team. This past Saturday, the team officially kicked off the 2013-14 season as it traveled up Route 663 to take part in the Quakertown Duals.
The results mirrored a team in a season-opening tournament that still has a long way to go in terms of defining its identity. Overall, Upper Perk went 1-3 against teams that included Freedom Area, Neshaminy, Pittston Area, Plymouth Whitemarsh, Quakertown and Stroudsburg.
The Indians’ lone win came over Pittston on criteria, with losses coming against Quakertown (44-27), Freedom (38-27) and Neshaminy (42-34). As a comparison, Upper Perk’s squad last year went 3-2 at the event against many of the same teams. That 2012-13 squad went on to post a 7-2 mark in the Pioneer Athletic Conference and a 20-9 overall record, feats head coach Tom Hontz would love to replicate this season.
Individually speaking, Upper Perk had its share of success as three wrestlers went undefeated. Senior Casey Cook was perfect in his bouts at 195, as were Eric Miler (132) and Dustin Steffenino (120).
Mike Felix (152) and Mike Lockhoff (145) both finished with 3-1 marks. Trevor Weeks (170), Dan Jordan (138) and Jacob Folk (126) all finished at .500 with 2-2 records.
In the close loss to Neshaminy, Upper Perk grabbed the lead twice early on only to see the Redskins take a lead they wouldn’t relinquish halfway through the match. The Indians, though, did their part to keep it close as Cook and Justin Crossley (220) earned falls to trim Neshaminy’s lead, 24-22, with five bouts remaining from 285-126. But the Redskins claimed two of the three contested matches from there, both by pin, to pull away down the stretch. Steffenino picked up a forfeit and Miller worked for a first-period fall to close the gap in the final two bouts.
Upper Perk hit the wrestling room this week, and will head down to Maryland this weekend to take part in the Glenn Jones Charger Classic at Henry Lackey High School.
After that, the Tribe will open up the PAC-10 schedule at home next Wednesday against Pottstown. The Trojans are 2-3 on the season after taking part in the Jim Thorpe Duals. Victories for Pottstown came over Salisbury (72-4) and Panther Valley (42-33), with setbacks against North Schuylkill (37-36) and Coatesville (44-24). Early standouts included twins Logan and Mason Pennypacker (113, 126) and Patrick Bohn (152), who all went 5-0, three of which came by fall. Darien Hain (160) was 4-0, and Bryant Wise and Josh Slody both had four wins, as well, at 132 and 220, respectively.