The District 2 Duals tournaments are just two days away and all 16 teams will learn this afternoon which team they will see in Friday's quarterfinals. They will see what kind of path will have to be taken to claim the championship and move on to the state tournament at the Giant Center in Hershey beginning Feb. 7.
The seeds and brackets aren't something that's easy to predict, especially this season when three Wyoming Valley Conference Class 3A teams have identical 4-2 divisional records, so that fun stuff will be left to the people who are supposed to figure that out.
There are some things already known about certain teams so that's what will be focused on below.
Spartans are close: If there was one thing learned from last week's seven-point loss against Delaware Valley, it's that Wyoming Valley West can compete with the Warriors. The Spartans have given DelVal coach Lou DeLauro something to worry about.
Don't forget about Coughlin: After losing to Valley West and Pittston Area back-to-back, some discounted the Crusaders. Don't look now, but they're hot at the right time, riding a 12-match winning streak and appear to be fully healthy and clicking. You can bet the team is looking to avenge those two losses.
Patriots will win: With the support of the home crowd, one thing is a near guarantee: Pittston Area always seems to get a win. That could be in jeopardy if PA is seeded fourth from the WVC, since its first likely opponent then will be DelVal.
Dallas can compete with the big boys: Some may have thought the Mountaineers were going to struggle being in Class 3A and Division I. The total opposite has happened and with seven losses decided by six points or less, the team is ready to make a run.
WVC could rule 2A: If you look at the schedule of Lackawanna League Class 2A teams, it may not be a shock to see Wyoming Valley Conference teams pull off upsets or even sweep in the first round. Outside of Western Wayne, the 2A teams from up north are having a down year.
Grenadiers need consideration: This is not a joke. As a small sample of the Wyoming Valley Conference's strength opposed to the LL in Class 2A this season, Blue Ridge is the second-best team record-wise from the LL, being 4-1 in Division II. The Red Raiders however, lost to GAR earlier this month. The Grenadiers are just 1-5 in WVC Division II and despite not having a full lineup, have the wrestlers who can compete and help the team win.
Black Knights will have hands full: Lake-Lehman has won 15 duals in a row. But three of its last four duals have been closer than coach Tom Williams would like. That's because Dallas, Tunkhannock and Wyoming Area all match up well with the Black Knights. Those same matchup problems will be present if the Knights face Western Wayne this weekend.
Seeding on the line tonight: It's expected that when the 2A dual brackets are released, a few lines will have Meyers/Wyoming Area written in the slot. The Warriors host the Mohawks tonight in a WVC Division II battle with WVC seeds No. 2 through 4 on the line. With a Meyers win, it will be the No. 2 seed. If Wyoming Area wins, Meyers could drop to 4. Looks like another headache for the seeding committee.
Tunkhannock will likely be the odd team out of this season's District 2 Class 3A Duals Tournament because it moved down to Division II. But the team has shown it can stick with top teams and that its seven freshmen aren't afraid to go out and prove they can compete.
After nearly upsetting Lake-Lehman last week, the Tigers had to forfeit a total of eight matches in duals against District 11 powers Northampton and Norristown, and still only lost by a combined 36 points.
It's not like a normal freshman class where they come in and they get stage fright or anything like that, Tunkhannock coach Bob Hegedty said. They come in and they don't care who they wrestle they just want to go out and do their job. It really doesn't matter to them. They think they can compete with anyone they step on the mat with. That's the kind of attitude they need to have.
Congratulations to Lake-Lehman junior Austin Harry who picked up career win No. 100 last week with a pin over Wyoming Area's Nathan Somers.
Brady Butler, Lake-Lehman: The junior defeated a pair of Wyoming Valley Conference champions last week in Dallas' Connor Martinez and Tunkhannock's Andrew Muckin in dual action.
He finished the week with a 4-0 mark and is also The Times Leader's reigning Athlete of the Week.