WPIAL Championship Semifinals Feature PA's Top Wrestlers

A loaded field of talent will meet in the 2016 WPIAL Semifinals with winners advancing to the WPIAL Finals and securing a spot in the PIAA State Championship. Below is a preview of the match-ups!


106 lbs.

#4 Job Chishko (Penn Trafford) vs. #12 Darren Miller (Kiski Area)

#8 Jacob Dunlop (Belle Vernon Area) vs. #5 Louis Newell (Seneca Valley)

Sophomore #4 Job Chishko (Penn Trafford) needed tiebreaker last weekend to get past #12 Darren Miller (Kiski Area) by a score of (2-1 TB) and will need to top the freshman again if he wants to advance into the WPIAL finals for the second straight season. On the bottom half Belle Vernon junior #8 Jacob Dunlop is looking for his first trip to the PIAA State Tournament after yet another successful regular season. He will take on returning PIAA State Medalist and sophomore #5 Louis Newell (Seneca Valley) who spent majority of the season competing up at 113 lbs. These two met last season in the WPIAL first round with Newell coming away with an (8-5) win.


113 lbs.

#1 Gage Curry (North Hills) vs. #15 Vincent Distefanis (Hempfield Area)

#13 Cam Connor (Kiski Area) vs. #4 Logan Macri (Canon McMillan)

PA’s top ranked 113 lbs. wrestler #1 Gage Curry (North Hills) is a 3x WPIAL/South West Regional Runner-up. He is also a 3x PIAA State Medalist and last season was the PIAA State Runner-up at 113 lbs. Now a senior Curry is hoping to break the streak and capture his first WPIAL Championship. In the semis he faces #15 Vincent Distefanis (Hempfield Area) who defeated #24 Mason Franks (Connellsville Area) in the quarters (7-3). On the bottom half #4 Logan Macri (Canon-McMillan) will take on Kiski Area rookie #13 Cam Connor in their fourth meeting of the season. Macri, a 2015 PIAA State Qualifier, won all three of his meetings with Connor this season.


120 lbs.

#1 Spencer Lee (Franklin Regional) vs. #8 Noah Levett (Kiski Area)

#6 Hunter Baxter (Pine-Richland) vs. #7 Caleb Morris (Waynesburg Central)

Last weekend 2x undefeated PIAA State Champion #1 Spencer Lee (Franklin Regional) entered his third straight post-season and it was business as usual for ‘The Kid’. In the finals he earned a technical fall over #8 Noah Levett (Kiski Area) shutting the PIAA State Qualifier out (16-0). Lee will no doubt bring the same intensity for the second time against Levett. On the bottom half two closely matched wrestlers look to earn a spot in the WPIAL Finals. #6 Hunter Baxter (Pine-Richland) was a PIAA State Medalist last season while #7 Caleb Morris (Waynesburg Central) was a 2015 WPIAL Champion but went (0-2) in his first trip to Hershey.


126 lbs.

#6 Chris Eddins (Greensburg Salem) vs. #12 Matt Oblock (Canon-McMillan)

#9 Luke Landefeld (North Allegheny) vs. #5 Ethan McCoy (Greater Latrobe)

126 lbs. is an interesting weight as all four wrestlers in the semifinals are capable, in my opinion, of winning the WPIAL title. On the top half #6 Chris Eddins (Greensburg Salem) will take on #12 Matt Oblock (Canon McMillan). In the quarterfinals Oblock earned a tough (4-3) decision over Belle Vernon’s #19 Tyler Selga (4-3). On the bottom half junior #9 Luke Landfeld (North Allegheny) has battled injuries all season but appears to be in great shape heading into the semifinals. Luke is looking for his second trip to Hershey but first since his freshman season. #5 Ethan McCoy (Greater Latrobe) is hoping to end his career on top and in 2015 he was a PIAA State Third Place Medalist.


132 lbs.

#4 Luke Kemerer (Hempfield Area) vs. #18 Mike Heinl (Shaler Area)

#5 Joey Blumer (Kiski Area) vs. #2 Zach Hartman (Belle Vernon Area)

#4 Luke Kemerer (Hempfield Area) looks like an entirely different wrestler his sophomore season and in the semifinals he will face senior #18 Mike Heinl (Shaler Area). Last season as a rookie Kemerer defeated, in what many saw as an upset, Mike Heinl in the Championship quarterfinals (3-1). On the bottom half two 2015 PIAA State Medalists will collide as #2 Zach Hartman (Belle Vernon Area) will face for the second time this season Kiski Area junior #5 Joey Blumer. At the PIAA State Dual Team Championships Hartman came away with a narrow (2-0 SV) win over Blumer.


138 lbs.

#1 Luke Pletcher (Greater Latrobe) vs. #12 Douglas Gudenburr (Ringgold)

#8 Jake Hinkson (North Allegheny) vs. #7 Shaun Wilson (Waynesburg Central)

#12 Doug Gudenburr reversed a decision from a week ago when he lost to #11 Brock Godzin (Belle Vernon Area) to win (1-0) and advance into the semifinals where he faces 2x PIAA State Champion #1 Luke Pletcher (Greater Latrobe). A rematch from the POWERade fifth place bout will take place on the bottom half with #7 Shaun Wilson (Waynesburg Central) taking on 2015 PIAA State Medalist #8 Jake Hinkson (North Allegheny). In that match Wilson dominated on his feet winning (11-5).


145 lbs.

#1 Cameron Coy (Penn Trafford) vs. A.J. Boeh (North Allegheny)

#22 Ryan Krause (Franklin Regional) vs. #5 Jake Hartman (Shaler Area)

PIAA State Champion #1 Cameron Coy has been untested this post-season and that trend should continue. The bottom half is wide open with #5 Jake Hartman (Shaler Area) leading the way after missing most of the regular season with an arm injury. Hartman will face #22 Ryan Krause (Franklin Regional) who survived a narrow (4-3) decision over North Hills senior Keagon Lawson.


152 lbs.

#7 Derek Verkleeren (Belle Vernon Area) vs. #21 Austin Bonacci (West Mifflin)

#17 Terry Victor (Waynesburg Central) vs. David Kelly (Pine-Richland)

Senior #7 Derek Verkleeren (Belle Vernon Area) is one win away from earning his first trip to the PIAA State Tournament and will take on #21 Austin Bonacci (West Mifflin) who he defeated last weekend in the Sectional finals (9-4). On the bottom half #17 Terry Victor (Waynesburg Central) had a hard fought (1-0) win in the quarterfinals over Caleb Baxter (Butler). He will take on 2015 PIAA State Qualifier David Kelly (Pine-Richland) who has rebounded from his defeat a week ago. In the sectional finals Kelly was pinned by Caleb Baxter.


160 lbs.

#7 Tim Wallace (Albert Gallatin) vs. #13 Kyle Homet (Waynesburg Central)

#15 Sean Hoover (North Allegheny) vs. #8 Mitch Hartman (Belle Vernon Area)

At 160 lbs. sophomore #7 Tim Wallace (Albert Gallatin) is still rolling after pulling a big upset last weekend over senior Mitch Hartman (Belle Vernon Area) and he advanced into the semifinals with a (3-0) win over Laurel Highlands Jimmy Pierce. He will face fellow sophomore #13 Kyle Homet (Waynesburg Central) who defeated #14 Kevin Holman (Ambridge) in the quarterfinals (5-3). North Allegheny’s #15 Sean Hoover advanced into the semifinals with a fall over Armstrong’s Nate Vukovich and will meet Belle Vernon Area senior #8 Mitch Hartman. Hartman appeared to have an aggravated elbow in his quarterfinal overtime win over #17 Blaze Kansco (Canon-McMillan) in sudden victory (3-1 SV). Last time these two faced off Mitch Hartman came away with a (1-0) decision but the injury to his elbow is cause for concern.


170 lbs.

#2 Nino Bonaccorsi (Bethel Park) vs. #11 Matt McGillick (Penn Trafford)

#5 Jake Shaffer (Greater Latrobe) vs. #3 Austin Bell (Belle Vernon Area)

#2 Nino Bonaccorsi (Bethel Park) is on a collision course with #3 Austin Bell (Belle Vernon Area) who he upset last week in the sectional finals. The junior will take on Penn Trafford’s #11 Matt McGillick who last season made a trip to the PIAA State Tournament. Bonaccorsi had an impressive (19-3) tech-fall over #20 Chad Coles (Butler) in the quarterfinals.  A pair of 2015 PIAA State Medalists will square off in the semifinals at 170 lbs. with #3 Austin Bell (Belle Vernon Area) and #5 Jake Shaffer (Greater Latrobe). These two faced off three times last season with Austin Bell winning all three meetings.


182 lbs.

#1 Jake Woodley (North Allegheny) vs. James Zeremenko (Canon McMillan)

#6 Milton Kobaly (Belle Vernon Area) vs. #7 Colin McCracken (Waynesburg Central)

The State’s top ranked wrestler at 182 lbs. junior Jake Woodley (North Allegheny) had no issues advancing into the semifinals where he will face James Zeremenko of Canon-McMillan. Woodley should have no issues punching his first career ticket to the PIAA State Championships against Zeremenko. One of the best semifinals match will be between #6 Milton Kobaly (Belle Vernon Area) and #7 Colin McCracken (Waynesburg Central). Both are high caliber wrestlers and both are big time pinners. They have not met yet this season as a Milton will be in search of his second trip to Hershey.


195 lbs.

#2 Drew Phipps (Norwin) vs. Nick Konyk (Canon-McMillan)

#4 Francis Duggan (North Allegheny) vs. #3 Eli Grape (Upper Saint Clair)

Journeyman #2 Drew Phipps (Norwin) will look to close out his career in the WPIAL on top at 195 lbs. and he faces Nick Konyk (Canon-McMillan) in the semifinals. The 3x PIAA State Qualifier and 2x State Medalist has not faced Konyk this season. On the bottom half it will be a re-match of the Allegheny County Tournament finals that saw #3 Eli Grape (Upper Saint Clair) come away with a (3-2 UTB) win. Grape’s only defeat on the season is to #2 Drew Phipps.


220 lbs.

#1 Jacob Robb (Armstrong) vs. #5 Chad Kuhn (Kiski Area)

#3 Derek Berberick (Greensburg Salem) vs. #6 Michael Mcaleavey (Peters Township)

The State’s new #1 ranked wrestler Jacob Robb (Armstrong) is competing in his first Class AAA WPIAL Tournament as he was a Class AA PIAA State Runner-up in 2015. Robb rolled into the semifinals and will meet Kiski Area senior #5 Chad Kuhn. Kuhn picked up a big fall over #9 Roman Macek (Montour) in the quarterfinals. On the bottom half #3 Derek Berberick (Greensburg Salem) inched closer to his first trip to the PIAA State Tournament earning a tough (3-1 SV) overtime win over 2015 PIAA State Qualifier #10 Nate Barcaskey (Moon Area). Berberick takes on Peters Township senior #6 Michael Mcaleavey in the semifinals who advanced with a tech-fall and major decision.


285 lbs.

#7 Brendan Furman (Canon-McMillan) vs. #10 Hayden Rice (Norwin)

#9 Isaac Reid (Kiski Area) vs. #11 Zack Jablonski (Montour)

Four very talented heavyweights occupy the 285 lbs. semifinals with all four wrestlers being ranked in the Top 11 of the State. On the top half #7 Brendan Furman (Canon-McMillan) is in search of his first trip to Hershey but will need to get through #10 Hayden Rice (Norwin) in the semifinals. The two have not met this season but both competed in he POWERade with Rice finishing as the runner-up and Furman taking third. On the bottom half returning PIAA State Medalist #11 Zach Jablonski (Montour) will face sophomore #9 Isaac Reid (Kiski Area) in a match that will be very tight. Reid was in the WPIAL Semifinals a year ago as a rookie and fell in tiebreaker ultimately missing a spot in Hershey. Reid defaulted to Jablonski in the WPIAL consolations last season after being injured.


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