TOM ELLING’S WRESTLING MAT-TERS: Dueling at the Duals

Anyone who has followed my wrestling columns or posts are aware that I emphasize that what we wrestle are dual meets. Earlier this week, I had that discussion with former fellow educators Dave Johnson and Bill Mosser. Each knew the correct terminology, but were unaware of the derivation. To that end, I’ll post it here.

Back in the early days of Pennsylvania wrestling, there were few teams, so the schedule would include two meets with the same school – home and away. Thus, they became known as dual meets.

Now that I mentioned dual meet, wasn’t it a great event for Bucktail to host the Bellefonte vs. Central Mountain dual?

Principal Betsy Dickey and assistant Tyler Barth (along with Jack Hanobic and all of the Bucktail staff) could not have been more accommodating. The fans at Bucktail were also very appreciative as well. We also have to thank Mike Maney, his staff and Bellefonte administration for adding the extra miles to the trip to accommodate the event.

As an aside, I did expect Howie Long to bring some popcorn over to the broadcast table. Maybe next year.

Now to Saturday’s duals.

Our immediate area (of District 6) involves just AAA teams. Three of the top four just happen to be top-seeded BEA, No. 2 Central Mountain and No. 4 Bellefonte. BEA and Bellefonte will square off on one mat, and Central Mountain will take on Mifflin County on the other. The Wildcats hold two wins over the Mifflin County matmen (40-24 and 41-21), while BEA slipped by Bellefonte earlier in the season, 42-35. These get underway at 2:00 PM with the winner of each meeting the same afternoon for the right to go to Hershey Giant Center for the PIAA State Team Championships the following week. BEA owns a win over CM in late December, 39-33.

Mark your calendars for the Individual tournaments. The Districts will be a one-day Saturday event on February 24th. The times to be announced soon. The NW AAA Regionals are March 2-3. Director Paul Conklin is already prepping for those. The PIAA States are March 8-9-10. and NCAA’s are the following weekend at Cleveland State.

In other local action, Penn State hosts Ohio State in what has been touted as the dual meet of the year between No. 1 and No. 2. The injury to Jason Nolf will take some of the shine off the meet, but Rec Hall should still be electric as Kyle Snyder and company try to end State’s long dual meet streak. Even with Nolf, the experts give the edge to the Buckeyes. The meet will be important for the seeding in the Big Tens.

Thomas Field House will have a busy few days with Edinboro coming in tonight, Cleveland the next and Cornell on Monday, February 4. We’ll be streaming the Edinboro and Cornell meets.

As highlighted earlier in the week, Central Mountain alums are wrestling collegiately in the persons of Geo Barzona (Bucknell), Chad Reese (Bucknell), Richie Thompson (Wilkes College) and Bryce Hanley (Penn State- DuBois).

Our Sugar Valley connection Craig Buskirk reports that the Phoenix gained their first dual meet win with a 54-24 decision. Coach Buzzie was somewhat disheartened in that there were several forfeits in both sides.

That 113-pounder for Bellefonte is Alec Bossert. Bossert was recruited just a few weeks ago out of the hall by Coach Maney. Alec, who had never wrestled before, came out to help out the team. You have to love that!

And, Alec is the son of former BE-N wrestler Matt and the grandson of a way back BE-N wrestler, Tom Bossert, and a singer of renown Kay Bossert.

Keep your feet under your shoulders, your elbows in and your head up.

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