Wyoming Valley Conference Wrestling Capsules
(State Classification in parenthesis)
Coach: Paul Ervin, first year
Last Year: 2-4 Division I; 13-15 Overall
Key Losses: Kevin Laubach, Will Mastellar, Tyler Ohl
Probable Lineup: 106: Dakota Conner, Jr.; 113: Lenexx Miedaner, So.; 120: Zach Fish, So.; 126: Troy Hernandez, Jr.; 132: Dylan Lee, Sr.; 138: Brandon Hughes, Sr.; 145: Peter Talanca, Sr.; 152: Zack Kyttle, Sr.; 160: Trent Kowalski, So.; 170: Nathan Maczuga, Jr.; 182: Curtis Whitmire, Jr.; 195: Chris Erickson, Jr.; 220: Stone Force, Fr.; 285: Ryan Dooley, Sr.
Outlook: The Bulldogs were peaking at the end of last season, winning six of their last eight duals before getting strong individual performances in the postseason. With just a few pieces missing from that run, the team has the talent to get on another similar run.
Coach’s Comments: “I think the guys toward the end of last season, they had some success and they were happy. There have been some guys that have been working hard in the offseason and I think they want to finish what we were starting at the end of last season.”
Coach: Steve Stahl, seventh year
Last Year: 4-2 Division I, 17-5 overall
Key Losses: Brad Emerick, Eddie Ciprich, Alex Schuerman, Jordan Phillips
Probable Lineup: 106: open; 113: Stephen Moon; 120: Nick Yankoski, Jr. or Henry Sanchez, So.; 126: Bobby Hawkins, Jr. or Zach Kenzakoski,; 132: Mike Brown, So. or Chris Huertero, Jr.; 138: Bill Poray, Sr.; 145: Dan McCarrol, Jr. or Zach Hinkle, Jr.; 152: Derek Nunez, So. or James Dankovitch, Jr., 160: Brandon Butry, Jr.; 170: Tyler Schweit, Sr. or Chris Deeds, So.; 182: Adam Giovanelli, Sr. or Rasheed Whitfield; 195: Jonathan Santana or Paul Cole, Sr.; 220: Marquel White; 285: Pat Pilch, Sr.
Outlook: Depth has always been the Crusaders’ strength and has won the team many dual meets. This year is no different. There are eight returning starters to the lineup, which will give any team fits on any given night.
Coach’s Comments: “We have a lot of potential if everyone wrestles up to their ability. Our guys are working hard in the room and I would like to see us be competitive though the season as a team and have a few wrestlers qualify for the state tournament.”
Coach: J.J. Konigus, fourth year
Last Year: 0-6 Division I; 0-22 overall
Key Losses: Matt Hammerstone, Aaron Barratta
Probable Lineup: 106: open; 113: Dylan Miale, Jr.; 120: open; 126: Seth Korch, Jr.; 132: Justin Lukaszewski, Fr.; 138: Dan Ritz, Jr.; 145: open; 152: Michael Legg, Sr.; 160: Luke Modrovsky, Jr.; 170: Bryan Vargas, Jr.; 195: Tyler Robinson, Sr.; 220: Brandon Ruckle, Sr.; 285: open
Outlook: The Comets went winless last year, but still excelled in the individual postseason, grabbing medals. This could be a similar season for the team. But don’t sleep on the potential there. As the season goes on and wrestlers get more experience, the team can pull out surprises.
Coach’s Comments: “We’re not going to be terrible, but if I’m wrestling in March I’m going to be happy. And at Crestwood, we’re normally wrestling in March. … Nobody is going to remember wins, they’re going to remember what you do in March.”
Coach: Mike Richards, seventh year
Last Year: 4-2 Division II; 7-13 overall
Key Losses: Dom DeGraba, Zach Macosky, Kris Roccograndi, Jimmy Caffrey, Steve Mingy
Probable Lineup: 106: Justin Phillips, Fr. or Jack Turner, Fr.; 113: Aloysha Ackerman, Fr. or Anthony Deluca, So.; 120: Justin Hutchins, Fr.; 126: open; 132: Adam Litchkowski, Sr.; 138: Xavier Barber, Fr.; 145: Nick Luzetski, Sr.; 152: Brandon Lias-Lewis, Sr.; 160,170: Logan Brace, Sr. or Cole Dixon, So. or Connor Martinez, Sr.; 182: Connor Martinez, Sr. or James Geiger, So. or Dominic Oliveri, Sr.; 195: James Geiger, So. or Dominic Oliveri, Sr. or John Hutchins, Sr; 220: John Hutchins, Sr.; 285: Ryan Monk, Sr.
Outlook: This could be a re-tooling season for the Mountaineers, who lost six district placewinners from last year to graduation. But they still have a good mix of experience and youth in the lineup, which could go a long way once things get going.
Coach’s Comments: “We have a lot of young wrestlers. This year is going to be a tough year for us as far as wins. We have good guys in the lineup from last year, but we’re filling in some freshman. It’s a transition year for us.”
Hazleton Area (3A)
Coach: Keith Maurer, third year (14th season overall)
Last Year: 1-5 Division I; 8-18 overall
Key Losses: Josh Mussoline, Dan Bove, Adam Fredmund, Taylor Schermerhorn
Probable Lineup: 106: Chris Lasecki, Fr. or Ezal Pavlichko, Jr.; 113: Jake Maurer, Fr.; 120: Jimmy Hoffman, Fr.; 126: Anthony Martoccio, Fr.; 132: Gerardo Aquino, So.; 138: Keith Lowrey, So.; 145: Larry Romanchik, Jr.; 152: Hernan Aquino, Jr.; 160: Derek Spachman, Jr.; 170: Carson Kinney, Fr.; 182: Steve Longazel, So.; 195: Jesus Castillo, Sr.; 220: Dewel Tejeda, Jr.; 285: Colin Gunser, So.
Outlook: This season is reminiscent of the Hazleton Area team during the 2006-07 season, when a talented freshman class started a four-year run. There is a plethora of potential in the lineup right now that may be a year away. But they’re ready to take the team back to elite status this season.
Coach’s Comments: “I do have a lot of talent there. But we’re very young. This is the start of what we’ve been waiting for for a while, so it’s exciting.”
Pittston Area (3A)
Coach: James Woodall, fourth year
Last Year: 4-2 Division I; 17-7 overall
Key Losses: Angelo Lussi, Frank Ardo, Brandon Columbo, Sam Falcone, John Minich, Donnie Parham, Brad Rush, Justin Wilk
Probable Lineup: 106: Chris Starinsky, So. or Anthony Halat, Sr.; 113: Zac Mekes; 120: Dan Mollica; 126: Tyler Lutecki, Sr.; 132: Dave DeLeo, Jr.; 138: Tyler Gregorio, Jr. or Allen Thomas or Hunter Booth, Fr.; 145: Dan Gambini, Jr. or Tyler Koval or Mike Minich, Jr.; 152: Ryan Joyce, Sr.; 160: Matt Romanoski, Jr.; 170: Kevin Wesolowski, Sr.; 182: open; 195: Jonathan Armitage, Jr.; 220: Jake Vaxmonsky, Jr.; 285: Eric Danaher, Sr.
Outlook: Losing so many key pieces from last year’s team that won the WVC Tournament, the 2013-14 season may seem like a rebuilding season for the Patriots. Not so fast. Each and every year, it may seem like that for Pittston Area. And every year, the team is in the hunt until the end. This season will be no different.
Coach’s Comments: “I’m excited about how hard these guys are working,” Woodall said via The Sunday Dispatch. “They could end up in a better position than most people expect.”
Wyoming Valley West (3A)
Coach: Drew Feldman, second year
Last Year: 6-0 Division I (champion); 14-4 overall
Key Losses: Kyle Krasavage, Derrick Simms, Brandon Baird
Probable Lineup: 106: Wayne Smith, So.; 113: James Wright, Jr.; 120: Alex Tirko, Sr.; 126: Bobby Lipski, Fr.; 132: Travis Roper, Sr.; 138: Jonathon Lagoski, So.; 145: Nathan Cheek, Sr.; 152: James Donovan, Sr.; 160: Cody Cordes, Jr.; 170: Jamaar Taylor, Sr.; 182: T.J. Pashinski, So.; 195: Michael Baird, So.; 220: Ian Moran, Sr.; 285: Matt Dubaskas, Sr.
Outlook: The Spartans won the division last year without a full lineup. They have every weight filled this season and with many key pieces returning for another run, this squad could be even better than the district runner-up finish from a season ago. Feldman has put together a brutal schedule for his team and that will only help his guys for what he expects to be a formidable run.
Coach’s Comments: “If you want to be the best, you have to beat the best. We’re giving our kids an opportunity to see good teams. We’re trying to take advantage of those things and see where it leads the program.”
Coach: Rick Simon, seventh year
Last Year: 1-5 Division II; 3-11 overall
Key Losses: Elijah Gresham
Probable Lineup: 106: Moses Tlatenchi, Fr.; 113: Anthony Tlatenchi, Jr.; 120: Carlos Betances, So.; 126: A.J. Luton, Sr.; 132: Devin Reese, Sr.; 138: open; 145: Dawin Reyes, Jr.; 152: Joey O’Day, Sr. or Pedro Chery, So.; 160: Korey Welkey, Sr.; 170: Rashaun Mathis, Sr.; 182: Namir Murphy, Fr.; 195: Zach Gonzalez, Jr.; 220: Zac Faust, Jr. or Mohamed Toure, So.; 285: Saul Wilkins, Jr. or Dominic Chaffman, So.
Outlook: There are now 16 members on the Grenadiers team. To some teams, that may not be a lot. Considering they only had six last year, it’s quite a turnaround. Despite the low numbers last year, GAR still picked up three wins and finished fourth at districts. The team returns a pair of district champs in Zac Faust and A.J. Luton, who was also a state qualifier. With all that going on, there is plenty of optimism for the team and they’re sure to surpass last season’s win total.
Coach’s Comments: “It’s the first time in a long time (for a full lineup). A lot of these guys have experience from being out last year or previously, and those who don’t have experience are learning quickly. We’re looking good. We’re practicing tough and we’re really excited about this year.”
Hanover Area (2A)
Coach: Anthony Mercadante, third year
Last Year: 3-3 Division II; 7-16 overall
Key Losses: Shane Elick, Chris Jones, Matt Monahan, Dillon Ropietski, Trevor Ahouse
Probable Lineup: 106: Jeffrey Bennett, Fr.; 113: Bryce Waters, So.; 120: Brad Glazenski, Sr.; 126: Kyle Holmgren, So.; 132: 138: 145: 152: 160: Anthony Eck, Sr.; 170: 182: Mike Kremenic, Jr.; 195: Kaine Rimmer, Sr.; 220: Khalil Lewis, Sr.; 285: Rob Thompson, Sr.
Outlook: The Hawkeyes lost a decent amount from last season. But they still have plenty of talent returning from a season ago. The problem they may run into during the regular season is that every other team in the division seems to have improved. Once the postseason rolls around though, Hanover Area is sure to be in the mix to claim individual golds and should be peaking as a team as well.
Coach: Tom Williams, fourth year (14th overall)
Last Year: 6-0 Division II (champion); 19-6 overall
Key Losses: Zeb MacMillan
Probable Lineup: 106: open; 113: Rodney Driscoll, Fr.; 120: open; 126: Jake Tomolonis, Fr.; 132: Jesse Tomolonis, Fr.; 138: Austin Harry, Sr.; 145: open; 152: Tyler Kalb, So.; 160: Bobby Wright, Sr.; 170: Tommy Williams, So.; 182: Derek Dragon, Jr. or Josh Bullock, Jr.; 195: Brady Butler, Sr.; 220: Phil Hettes, Jr. or Justin Winters, Jr.; 285: Austin Parry, Jr.
Outlook: It’s been back-to-back Division II championships for the Black Knights and two straight appearances in the District 2 Class 2A Duals finals. With a large contingent back from those squads, Lehman is expected to make another run in both this season.
Coach’s Comments: “We have a mix of some young kids right now and seasoned veterans. We’re trying to progress as the season develops. We’ll be trying to piece together a respectable dual meet lineup as the season moves along.”
Coach: Ron Swingle, 12th year
Last Year: 3-3 Division II; 11-12
Key Losses: Kashif Alston
Probable Lineup: 106: Colin Pasone, Fr. or Brennan Phillips, So.; 113: Mike Dempsey, So.; 120: Dan Semanek, So.; 126: Eric Hernandez, So.; 132: Josh Sheetz, Jr.; 138: Terrance Clark, So. or Tyler Patronick, Jr.; 145: Geno Setta, So. or Tyler Savage, Sr.; 152: Johntae Nelson, Sr. or Quince Hutchings, Jr.; 160: Edwin Vergara, Jr.; 170: T.J. Cistrunk, Jr.; 182: Miles Davis, Sr.; 195: Alex Velazco, So.; 220: Maliek Moore, So.; 285: Kyle Krepich, Sr.
Outlook: Looking at the roster and lineup, the Mohawks should improve on last year’s record. They lost only few pieces from last year, gained some experience from junior high and have many veterans returning with medals won from last season.
Coach’s Comments: “I think we’re going to be able to scare people, but I think it might be a little over our heads to win big matches. I don’t know if we’re going to mark our success by wins and losses this year. I hope I’m wrong, but I think we’re on the uphill side.”
Coach: Harold Shotwell, first year
Last Year: 0-6 Division II; 1-10 overall
Key Losses: n/a
Probable lineup: 106: Dave Jones, So.; 113: Nelvin Villafrannca, So.; 120: Josh Brady, So.; 126: Crystal Daniels, So.; 132: Kyle Sorber, Sr.; 138: Pat Bova, So.; 145: Kyle Gavrish, Sr.; 152: Anthony Edwards, Sr.; 160: Jacob Havey, So.; John Keefe, So.; 170: Derrick Fisher, Jr.; 182: Mike Stephanick, Sr.; 195: Blake Balderrama, Jr.; 220: Giacoma Bova, Sr. 285: Ryan Zakarauskas, So.
Outlook: It’s a full lineup for the Trojans this season, as the junior high coach takes over the varsity program with plenty of knowledge of his current group — he’s coached them prior to their varsity careers. There may be some bumps in the road early on for this team, but as the season progresses, expect the Trojans to get better and better.
Coach’s Comments: “I hope we can surprise some teams this year. Catch some teams sleeping and hopefully we can make some noise with the young guys.”
Coach: Bob Hegedty, fifth year
Last Year: 5-1 Division II; 15-8 overall
Key Losses: Andrew Muckin
Probable Lineup: 106: Josh Beeman, Fr.; 113: Tom Bachman, So.; 120: Jake Richards, So.; 126: Bill Manley, So.; 132: Dakota Quick, So.; 138: Elliott Hammersly, So.; 145: Mike Manley, So.; 152: Ben Siegel, Sr.; 160: Dalton Ray, So.; 170: Zach Appleby, Sr.; 182: Jared Bernosky, So.; 195: Ricky Stevens, So.; 220: Alex Berlue, Sr.; 285: Hunter Prebost, So.
Outlook: Just two years removed from having a bad season, the Tigers are in position this campaign to claim the Division II championship and get in contention for the next several years in the District 2 Class 3A race. They have numerous successful youngsters returning, anchored by veteran leadership from Ben Siegel, who is primed for a long postseason run.
Coach’s Comments: “We’re hoping to win the division. I think the young guys are definitely ready to take the next step (individually). Most of them have been doing some offseason wrestling and lifting so hopefully it comes through for them.”
Wyoming Area (2A)
Coach: Steve Mytych Sr. first year
Last Year: 3-3 Division II; 6-7 overall
Key Losses: Nick Heck, Andy Schutz, Carmen Mauriello, Stephen Barush, Shaun Whiting, Carl Zielinski
Probable Lineup: 106: Shaun Vazquez, Jr.; 113: Mitchell Higley, Fr. or William Shelley, Fr.; 120: Kevin Pish, So.; 126: Patrick Heck, So.; 132: Charlie Johnson, So.; 138: Kendrick Beyer, Fr.; 145: Adam Buczynski, Fr.; 152: Zach Briggs, So.; 160: Jason Wilson, So. or Matthew Crawford, Jr.; 170: Zach O’Brien, So.; 182: Jude Pollitt-Moran, Jr.; 195: open; 220: open; 285: open
Outlook: The Warriors were a veteran team last year and the experience showed as they finished at .500 in the division and were third at districts, crowning four champions. Well, three of those champions have graduated, making this year’s squad young. But there sure is plenty of potential in the lineup with returning D2 champion Patrick Heck, regional qualifier Charlie Johnson, district medalist Jude Pollit-Moran and two-time junior high champion Kendrick Beyer.
Coach’s Comments: “They’re going to get beat up along the way for sure. But that’s the only way you learn and the only way they’re going to get better.”