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Mercury Area Wrestling Preview

BOYERTOWN
Coach: Pete Ventresca, 11th year.

Jordan Wood

Jordan Wood

Last year’s record: 9-0 PAC-10, 21-2 overall.
Wrestlers to watch: Gregg Harvey, Sr., 182; Tommy Killoran, Sr., 285; Garrett Mauger, Sr., 120; Lucas Miller, Sr., 126; Brody O’Connell, Sr., 195; Jordan Wood, Sr., 220; Chris Berry, Jr., 138; David Campbell, Jr., 113; Jakob Campbell, Jr., 106; J.T. Cooley, Jr., 132; Hunter Vogels, Jr., 145; Matt Wilde, Jr., 106; Elijah Jones, Soph. 152.
Outlook: Led by five returning state place winners and several other regional qualifiers, the Bears will be aiming high this year. The list of Boyertown state medalists is headed by Wood, a PIAA Class AAA champion, three-time state finalist and No. 2 ranked wrestler in the nation in his weight category. … Jakob Campbell (third), Miller (fifth), Harvey (sixth) and Killoran (sixth) all medaled at Hershey in helping the program place fourth in the state’s team standings. … David Campbell, Cooley, O’Connell and Vogels all qualified for the AAA Southeast Regional last year, with Mauger doing so in 2014. … “We have a great group of kids here, who have set high goals for themselves and our team, and have been working towards their goals all offseason,” Ventresca said. “We are excited about this team and their potential. I believe that this is going to be the most talented and balanced team that I have ever been associated with. We have high expectations.”

DANIEL BOONE
Coach: Kevin Oswalt, third year.
Last year’s record: 3-4 Berks Conference, 14-13 overall.
Wrestlers to watch: Brenden Valverde, Sr.; Joey Yohn, Sr.; Jesse Enck, Jr.; Connor Spalding, Jr.; Jack Zummo, Jr.; Tyler Ring, Soph.
Outlook: Valverde, Yohn and Enck were all District 3-AAA Tournament qualifiers last year. Enck placed sixth at the Southcentral AAA Regional after scoring thirds at the Berks County and District 3-AAA (Section 4) tournaments. … “The Daniel Boone wresting team will have a mix of veteran wrestlers as well as young wrestlers,” Oswalt said. “Our team will look to continue to improve on a daily basis. We will look to learn from the mistakes we make in the practice room as well as our matches. We will look for some of our older experienced wrestlers to take the younger guys under their wings and prepare them for the season. We had a good off-season and picked up some new wrestlers that will help the team out. The main strength of our team is we are a family and support each other as a family does. It is going to take the whole team for Daniel Boone wrestling to be successful.”

HILL SCHOOL
Coach: Mark Pearson, seventh year.
Last year’s record: 3-1 Mid-Atlantic Prep League, 15-6 overall.
Wrestlers to watch: Nolan Butcher, Sr., 160; Zack Sheehan, Sr., 138; Hakim Coles, Jr., 182; Dymir Davis-Carruth, Jr., 195-220; Will Hare, Jr., 220-285; Kyle Gorant, Soph., 132; Ted Kennedy, Soph., 106; Denzel Tovar, post-graduate, 120.
Outlook: Butcher, Sheehan, Coles, Davis-Carruth and Gorant were all National Prep tournament qualifiers last year. Butcher had the best showing of the Hill’s returning national qualifiers, going 2-2. … Davis Carruth was a runner-up at 220 in the Pa. Independent Schools Wrestling Tournament last winter. … Tovar, from Wall, N.J., was a double champion at the USAW Northeast Regional. … “With a seasoned core of veteran wrestlers, Hill should have a solid dual-match season and place well at PAISAA and National Preps,” Pearson said.

METHACTON
Coach: A.J. Maida, eighth year.
Last year’s record: 2-7 PAC-10, 7-9 overall.
Wrestlers to watch: Sayer Campbell, Sr., 152; Dylan Henry, Jr., 132; Brendan Marion, Jr., 160; Salaam McNair, Jr., 170; Bryce Reddington, Jr., 145.
Outlook: Reddington was a state-tournament qualifier last season at 132, where he went 2-2. He previously finished third in the Southeast AAA Regional, and second in the District 1-AAA West tourney. … “We’re pretty young for the second consecutive season,” Maida said, “so that’s always fun teaching new guys the culture. Right now, we’re focused on teaching kids what it means to be on a team and getting them to buy into the idea that the whole is more important than the individual, and that to compete in our league you have to put in a ton of hard work. I’m interested to see who wants to step up and lead what will be a fun group to be around.”

OWEN J. ROBERTS
Coach: Steve DeRafelo, 13th year.

Springford wins a 9-1 decision at 170lbs. Photo by Kevin Hoffman, the Mercury

OJR’s Xavier Ferrizzi looks to break loose during a bout at 170 last season.

Last year’s record: 7-2 PAC-10, 13-5 overall.
Wrestlers to watch: Stone Bissland, Sr., 132-138; Xavier Ferrizzi, Sr., 195-220; Micky Kohn, Sr., 171-182; Connor Mitchell, Sr., 220; Will Scherfel, Sr., 220; Nick Dulaikas, Jr., 182-195; Luke Resnick, Jr., 106-113; Ryan Resnick, Jr., 132-138; Tyler McCutcheon, Soph., 106-113.
Outlook: Ferrizzi is the defending 195-pound champion from the District 1-AAA West and Southeast AAA Regional tournaments. He won his first two matches at states, then lost twice to finish 2-2. … “We are expecting huge things from our senior class,” DeRafelo said. “We graduated a deep and talented group of athletes last year, but this has created an opportunity for our underclassmen to step up and take over the reins. We are excited about our talented group of freshmen. We have a lot of work to do if we hope to compete in the PAC-10; the league is full of great coaches and tough kids.”

PERKIOMEN VALLEY
Coach: Jared Dubbs, second year.
Last year’s record: 5-4 PAC-10, 13-7 overall.
Wrestlers to watch: Matt Kenney, Sr., 220; Jake Latchum, Sr., 132; Quinn Verbeke, Sr., 152; Paul Pearce, Jr., 195; Drew Rowley, Jr., 145; Kareem Elghawy, Soph., 182; Vinnie Goncalves, Soph., 120; Kevin Lovett, Soph., 152-160.
Outlook: With a district sixth-place finish at 220, Kenney went the furthest of the Vikings’ returning crew. … “We’re looking to continue to build our program with a lot of youth on the team,” Dubbs said. “Senior leadership will be critical, as we wish to continue to be competitive in the very tough PAC-10.”

PHOENIXVILLE
Coach: Alec Bown, second year.

Pottsgrove's Evan Weneck controls Phoenixville's Tanner Romance during their bout at 160 Wednesday night in PAC-10 wrestling action.

Phoenixville’s Tanner Romance looks to break out during a bout at 160 last season.

Last year’s record: 1-8 PAC-10, 9-14 overall.
Wrestlers to watch: Mark Cermanski, Sr., 145-152; Max Shepherd, Sr., 106-113; Tanner Romance, Jr. 195; Bryce Thompson, Soph., 182.
Outlook: On a roster that is close to 75 percent sophomores and freshmen, 10th-graders Angel and Gabriel Velasco and ninth-grader Xander Crawford rank as top newcomers. … Shepherd is coming off a junior season that saw him qualify for the Southeast AAA Regional at 106, where he went 2-2. He had previously placed third at the Pioneer Athletic Conference and District 1-AAA West tourneys. … “The Phantoms are excited to have a young team that can grow and develop together,” Bown said. “The attitude and work ethic in the wrestling room is encouraging so far, which bodes well for the future of the program. Patience will be the key as a young core will work to improve and compete on a daily basis.”

POPE JOHN PAUL II
Coach: Jared Every, second year.

Pope John Paul II's Dave Mattiola pins Pottsgrove's Kevin Rodriguez at 138 pounds last season.

Pope John Paul II’s Dave Mattiola pins Pottsgrove’s Kevin Rodriguez at 138 pounds last season.

Last year’s record: 0-9 PAC-10, 6-13 overall.
Wrestlers to watch: Nick Yerger, Jr., 126-132; Zane Alderferer, Soph., 120-126; Nate Aldinger, Soph., 120-126; Nick Boyce, Soph., 120-126; Dave Mattiola, Soph., 138-145; Chris Salvo, Fresh., 113-120.
Outlook: Yerger, a District 1-AA champion and Southeast AA Regional qualifier as a sophomore 126-pounder, heads the list of returning district stars that showed Mattiola finishing second at 138 while Boyce (106) and Aldinger (113) placed third. … Every noted the Golden Panther roster lists 18 at present, with more wrestlers expected to come out for the team along the way. … “I’m confident we can fill out the lineup,” Every said. “We have guys coming in with experience. I’m looking for us to have a .500 dual-match team record.”

POTTSGROVE
Coach: Jeff Madden, eighth year.
Last year’s record: 3-6 PAC-10, 8-8 overall.
Wrestlers to watch: Chris DeFrancesco, Sr., 220; Christian Pace, Sr., 152; Chris Quintrell, Sr., 195; Kylif Underwood, Sr., 126; Brady Carpenter, Jr., 138; Ryan Finn, Jr., 160; Michael Kilgore, Jr., 106; Tyler Smith, Jr., 285; Chase Banyai, Soph., 120; Skylar McLeod, Soph., 120.
Outlook: Two underclassmen, junior Alan Hill and sophomore Matt Sizemore — both at 132 — rank as promising newcomers. … Banyai, DeFrancesco, Finn and Underwood all qualified for the District 1-AAA West Tournament. DeFrancesco had the best finish, placing fifth at 195 off a 3-2 run. … Finn’s fourth-place showing at 152 left him the Falcons’ highest finisher in the PAC-10 tourney.

POTTSTOWN
Coach: Brad Bechtel, fourth year.

Logan Pennypacker

Logan Pennypacker

Last year’s record: 4-5 PAC-10, 10-10 overall.
Wrestlers to watch: Conor Benfield, Sr., 138; Bubba Gephart, Sr., 120; Saddiq Ibn-Mustafah, Sr., 160; Logan Pennypacker, Sr., 138; Mason Pennypacker, Sr., 152; Bryant Wise, Sr., 145; Jimmie Zazzi, Sr., 285; Ray Bumbarger, Jr., 285; Isaiah Mayes, Jr., 170; Ernest McCalvin, Jr., 182; Nyles Rome, Jr., 195; Alex Caballero, Soph., 120; Tom Doyle, Soph., 220; A.J. Ecker, Soph., 132; Nate Parson, Soph., 126; Anthony Wiggins, Soph., 145.
Outlook: Two freshmen, Tyler Clifford (120) and James Diamond (220), are also in the mix. … Wise, a returning two-time state tournament qualifier, and Logan Pennypacker are both in position to hit the 100-win mark for their scholastic careers, coming into the season with 92 apiece. … Mason Pennypacker, with 77, is also within reach of triple-digit fame. … “We have a solid core of returning wrestlers and a few promising freshman coming in that should see varsity time,” Bechtel said. “We are looking to stay healthy all year, and try to be competitive in the extremely tough PAC-10.”

SPRING-FORD
Coach: Tim Seislove, 17th year.
Last year’s record: 8-1 PAC-10, 23-4 overall.
Wrestlers to watch: Jimmy Frank, Sr., 113; Matt Krieble, Sr., 138; Hunter Mitch, Sr., 126; Steve Rice, Sr., 170; Jonathan Westlake, Jr., 132; Brandon Meredith, Soph., 106.
Outlook: Krieble and Rice were AAA state-tournament qualifiers last season at 138 and 170, respectively. They were a respective fifth and fourth in their weight classes at the Southeast AAA Regional tourney. … Meredith and Mitch were other Rams to make the 2014-15 regional competition. … Krieble is the Ram next in line to reach the 100-win mark. He comes into the current campaign with 75 victories, off a junior season that saw him rack up 32 wins. … “We lost a strong group of seniors to graduation last year,” Seislove said. “Right now, we are just trying to fill all 14 weight classes to be competitive in the toughest league in District 1.”

UPPER PERKIOMEN
Coach: Sam Walters, second year.
Last year’s record: 6-3 PAC-10, 14-8 overall.
Wrestlers to watch: Billy Brower, Sr., 195; Mike Felix, Sr., 170; Noah Folk, Sr., 145; Mike Lockhoff, Sr., 160; Jake Folk, Jr., 152; Mickey Hopkins, Jr., 170-182; Mike Modugno, Jr., 220; Jared Kuhns, Soph., 106; D.J. McIlvaine, Soph., 138; Ryan Rossiter, Soph., 120; Jarek Svanson, Soph., 113.
Outlook: “We have very low numbers this year with only 11 wrestlers on our roster,” Walters said.. “Each one of these wrestlers is a returning wrestler from last year. While we may not do well as a dual team this season, we still will be very competitive individually. We are returning six district qualifiers and two regional qualifiers. So we have some pretty talented individuals on this team that we expect big things from.”

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