Wrestling: Phillipsburg Once Again Finds a Way, Clips Middletown North in Sectional Final
Middletown North had the defending NJSIAA Group 4 champions in their own gym for a sectional final and was primed for the upset, but once again it was Phillipsburg finding a way to win another championship.
Despite winning just six of the 14 bouts, the Stateliners used pins by Cody Harrison, Josh Ramos and Lance Wissing and a technical fall by Kyle Tino to out-bonus the Lions and take their 37th sectional title with a 32-20 victory on Friday night in the NJSIAA North 2, Group 4 final.
Ramos secured a fall with .5 seconds left in the third period at 152 pounds to give Phillipsburg a 20-15 lead and, following a forfeit to state medalist Brian Meyer at 160 pounds, Wissing pinned freshman Nico Cerbo in the first period to put Phillipsburg up 32-15. That meant Middletown North needed some combination of 17 points in the final three bouts to win (the Lions would have won on criteria in the event of a tie), and when Austin Roth held Jacob Anderson to a 3-1 decision at 195 pounds it clinched the match for the Stateliners.
The Lions started strong with Austin Dewise and Thomas O'Keefe earning decisions at heavyweight and 106 pounds, respectively, and Middletown North got a huge win from sophomore Tyler Klinsky at 113 pounds when he beat Cullen Day, 8-1, in a matchup of state qualifiers.
The teams traded decisions at 120 and 126 as Travis Jones got Phillipsburg on the board before Nate Pujols won for Middletown North and put the Lions up 12-3. Phillipsburg quickly took the lead, however, when Tino won by 25-7 technical fall and Harrison, who was eighth in the state last season, won by fall in 28 seconds for a 14-12 Phillipsburg lead.
Senior Stanley Wojdylak responded for Middletown North with a 7-1 win over Jayson Zinsmeister at 145 pounds to put the Lions back in front, 15-14, but the 18 points from 152 to 170 by the Stateliners sealed the win.
Phillipsburg 32, Middletown North 30
Hwt: Austin Dewise (MN) d. Patrick Sharpe 3-0
106: Thomas O'Keefe (MN) d. Logan Maczko 7-1
113: Tyler Klinsky (MN) d. Cullen Day 8-1
120: Travis Jones (P) d. Freddy Luchs 7-0
126: Nate Pujols (MN) d. Luke Hardin 6-2
132: Kyle Tino (P) tf. Chris Mc Carthy 4:54 (25-7)
138: Cody Harrison (P) p. Mike Puzo 0:28
145: Stanley Wojdylak (MN) d. Jayson Zinsmeister 7-1
152: Josh Ramos (P) p. Joe Cavanagh 5:59
160: Brian Meyer (P) by forfeit
170: Lance Wissing (PB) p. Nico Cerbo 1:45
182: Nicko Cofone (MN) by forfeit
195: Jacob Anderson (MN) d. Austin Roth 3-1
220: Kevin McCarthney (MN) by forfeit