Archbishop Wood wins Wetzel Holiday Classic

HORSHAM >> It was getting late in the third period, time for Harry Green to dig down deep.

“I think it was just the will to win,” the Archbishop Wood 170-pounder said. “We’ve been training in the room to push it and push it hard. You have 30 seconds left on the clock and the feeling of losing versus the feeling of being tired are two completely different things.

“I’d rather battle with the feeling of losing air and body fatigue rather than dealing with the feeling of knowing I didn’t wrestle 100 percent until the buzzer.”

Green battled for three periods plus overtime, drawing even at 8-8 with West Chester East’s Andrew DiBernardo to force the extra session, then prevailed 10-8 to take the 170-pound title, one of the cornerstones of the Vikings’ 184-point, first-place effort at the 16th Annual Ralph Wetzel Holiday Classic at Hatboro-Horsham High School Friday night.

“The talk going in was everyone wrestling their own match and as long as everyone did their part that we would win the team title,” Green said, “because once everyone has all of their gears running, there’s no way we can be stopped.”

Wood out-distanced itself from second-place Unionville, which had 134 points, and William Tennent, which took the No. 3 spot with 120.5.

The Vikings got several outstanding performances, including T.J. England, who — even though he had to settle for a forfeit victory at 106 (Germantown Academy’s Chris Kim had an injured finger) — wrestled his way to a 106-pound title.

“We’re happy,” said Vikings coach and Wood grad Chris Meister. “We came to this tournament on a one-year move — normally we’re up in the valley wrestling — and we came hear wanting to make a local statement.

“We came to this tournament with the hopes of winning it. We won it handily and we’re happy about that. The boys worked really hard. Harry Green wrestled a really tough match. And T.J. England, my freshman 106-pounder, boy oh boy is that kid wrestling like a little man.”

Coming through with the meet’s Most Outstanding Wrestler Award was William Tennent’s A.J. Tamburrino, who pulled out a 4-1 decision victory over Norristown’s Eric Fuentes at 132.

“It was a tough match between me and (Fuentes). I trained hard and had to be smart,” said Tamburrino, who is only a freshman. “It was a clean win.”

Germantown Academy’s Brandon Seidman wrestled at Wetzel the last two years, gaining valuable experience, then returned as a seasoned junior who earned the 113 title, using an escape with 43 seconds left to win 4-3 over Ephrata’s Cameron Terry.

“My freshman year, I didn’t even make it to the second day,” Seidman recalled with a grin. “I was pretty underweight and I was about 90 pounds. Last year, I took fourth place at 106.

“I’d say (I’m where I wanna be), other than just pushing the pace when I get a lead. I need to not worry about just hanging on, rather improve upon where I’m at.”

Ascending to the top spot on the medal stand at 152 pounds was Cheltenham’s August Gershwin.

“After last year, when I took second, I really wanted to come back and win it this year,” said Gershwin, who notched a 6-2 decision over Wood’s Austin Gillick. “A Cheltenham student hasn’t won it since 2005 so it felt good to come back and get the ‘W’ for our school.

“All I wanted to do was win this for my friends and coaches so I got it done for them. I stepped up my defense a whole lot in the offseason, I worked on lifting weights a lot. I’m eating better, I’m exercising better — I’m just a better athlete this year.”

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Reply