Prexies impressive in dumping Devils

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observer-reporter.com/HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS

Friday, February 13, 1998

Prexies impressive in dumping Devils

BY JOE TUSCANO
THE OBSERVER-REPORTER

It took about 90 minutes for the dual meet to end. But well before that, many people sitting in the Trinity gymnasium Thursday night had to be wondering the same thing.

Can any team stop Washington?

"You're not going to get me to say anything about that,'' said Wash High coach Matt Midea with a chuckle.

After the Little Prexies' dismantling of fourth-seeded Burgettstown, 41-17, in the Class AA semifinals of the team tournament, only one team has a chance now: West Greene.

The two Section 3 rivals will meet Saturday for the title. The Pioneers earned their berth with a hard-fought 32-21 victory over Southmoreland.

The WPIAL will announce the site and time today.

Washington (13-3), the No. 1 seed and top team in the Observer-Reporter Wrestling Rankings, dominated the Blue Devils (13-3), winning nine of the 13 bouts and registering three pins and two technical falls.

"We knew we had to beat their better kids and we knew we had to wrestle a little above what we're capable of,'' said Burgettstown coach Terry Havelka. "We didn't do that, but that's because of their kids. They are just tough to beat.''

Washington broke the dual meet open through the middle and upper weights. Mike Mousetis started a run when he pinned Burgettstown's James DeThomas in 5:48 at 135 to give Wash High a 20-8 lead.

Matt Lopresti stretched it to 25-8 with a 15-0 technical fall over Brandon Davis at 140 and two bouts later Sean Thomas captured an 11-3 major decision over Jess Lemaster at 152 to make it 29-11. Scott Belcastro pinned Matt Baker in 1:22 at 160 and Matt Brison battled for a 6-1 decision over the Blue Devils' Bob McFall at 171 that stretched the Little Prexies' lead to 27 points, 38-11.

"Our good kids were able to get pins or technical falls or majors,'' said Midea. "If we stay off our backs (in the other weight classes), we save a lot of points.''

Burgettstown made some moves to stop Washington but couldn't produce enough points. Ross Scalise dropped to 112 but lost a 4-2 decision to Wash High's Dan Kosek; Scott Vallina moved to 119 and won by a 21-6 technical fall over Kurt Rush; and Rob Bagwell dropped to 145 and won a 5-0 decision over Jeff Florian. At 130, Eric Ryan decisioned WHS's Joe Kubas 11-8.

"They moved some kids down and probably felt they could get pins in those matches and that Ryan would pin Kubas,'' Midea said. "Our kids came through real well. The role players did an outstanding job.''

While Burgettstown had its team season end, the Blue Devils left with a feeling of accomplishment.

"We were happy to be here,'' said Havelka. "We came to wrestle and compete. It's a big mark for us to make it this far down the road. The goal was the semifinals and we came to win. We just got beat by a better team.'




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