Hempfield Area senior Sam Krivus earned his third career Super 32 Challenge Championship Belt.
It wasn’t quite the performance Pennsylvania had in 2013 at the Super 32 when a total of eight (8) Keystone State wrestlers captured Super 32 Challenge Championship Belts, which included 28 total medalists, but nonetheless Pennsylvania wrestlers were again successful at the Super 32 in Greensboro, NC.In 2014 Pennsylvania eared five (5) Championship Belts including a total of 22 medalists. Brackets can be found here.
The 2014 Super 32 featured several big names in Pennslyvania including 2014 PIAA State Champion Spencer Lee, 3x PIAA State runner-up Michael Kemerer, and 2013 PIAA State Champion Sam Krivus. There were several notable wrestlers missing who were registered to compete including the #1 Top Incoming Freshman Gavin Teasdale (Jefferson-Morgan), 2x PIAA State Champion Devin Brown (Franklin Regional), and 2x PIAA State runner-up Jordan Wood (Boyertown Area).
For senior Sam Krivus (Hempfield Area) it was a historic run at 138 lbs. as he captured his third career Super 32 Challenge Championship title becoming only the sixth wrestler ever to do so in the Tournament’s 16-year history. It certainly wasn’t an easy task as Sammy picked up seven (7) straight victories by decision. In the semifinals Krivus met sophomore and 2014 Cadet National Freestyle Champion Jarod Verkleeren (Belle Vernon Area) and needed overtime to come out on top (4-2 SV). In the finals Krivus downed Oklahoma recruit Davion Jeffries (Broken Arrow, OK) with a (5-2) decision to earn his third Championship belt. Krivus wasn’t the only PIAA State Champion in the 138 lbs. bracket as fellow WPIAL wrestler and sophomore Cameron Coy (Penn Trafford) took to mats. Coy, a returning 132 lbs. PIAA Class AAA State Champion, advanced into the Championship quarterfinals where he dropped a (2-0) decision to eventual runner-up Davion Jeffries. Coy dropped to the consolation round and bounced back with two hard-fought victories. After Jarod Verkleeren fell to Sam Krivus he would met Cameron Coy in the consolation semifinals. In a battle of two of the top sophomores in the Nation Verkleeren survived a (1-1 UTB) to advance into the consolation finals. Verkleeren ended up in fourth while Coy finished in fifth place.
While Krivus earned his third Super 32 Challenge Championship sensational sophomore Spencer “The Kid” Lee advanced to his third straight Super 32 Finals and destroyed the field capturing his second straight Championship Belt. It wasn’t much of a challenge for ‘The Kid’ who didn’t even see the second period until the Championship semifinals. In his six total matches Spencer was only on the mat for seven and a half minutes picking up five falls and one technical-fall. Three of his five falls came in under one minute including a 0:26 second pin in the finals over Ohio Division I State Champion Noah Baughman of Wadesworth, Ohio. Lee definitely made a statement as the Nation’s most impressive high school wrestler in the Nation.
Also earning his second Super 32 Challenge Championship Belt was junior and 2x PIAA State Champion Luke Pletcher (Greater Latrobe). Pletcher moved up two weight classes from 120 lbs. to 132 lbs. but was still able to grind out a tough performance over two days to earn his second straight Super 32 Challenge Belt. In the semifinals Pletcher faced a tough competitor in fellow junior Mitchell McKee of Minnesota. In the finals Luke was able to outlast New York senior Mike D’Angelo (4-2). Another junior with a PIAA State Championship to his name would find himself on the podium as Derry Area’s Mickey Phillippi finished in fourth place at 132 lbs. Phillippi was a 2013 Super 32 Challenge runner-up to Pletcher last season at 120 lbs. Like Pletcher Mickey moved up two weight classes in 2014 and was able to advance into the championship quarterfinals where he fell to runer-up Mike D’Angelo. After picking up two hard-fought victories in the consolation round Phillippi faced Mitchell McKee in the consolation semifinals. There Mickey picked up an impressive (4-2) victory but dropped his next match to finish in fourth place.
The wait is over for Franklin Regional Michael Kemerer. The Iowa recruit and 3x PIAA State runner-up earned his second career Super 32 Challenge Championship Belt after two seasons as the Tournament’s runner-up. As a freshman Kemerer was a 2011 Super 32 Challenge Champion at 106 lbs. and a runner-up the next two years. Now at 145 lbs. Kemerer had no issues advancing into the semifinals where he met Minnesota junior Griffin Parriott of New Prague. Kemerer needed overtime to reach his fourth straight Super 32 finals with a (6-4 SV) victory. In the finals Michael had no problem defeating Iowa senior Max Thomsen picking up a (9-4) decision. Kemerer wasn’t the only Pennsylvania medalist at 145 lbs. as junior Hayden Hidlay (Mifflin County) had his most impressive Super 32 performance. After two victories Hidlay dropped his third match to Griffin Parriott (6-2) to drop him into the consolation round. Hayden then went on a tear picking up six (6) straight victories in the consolations to finish in third place in a talented 145 lbs. bracket. In the consolation semifinals Hidlay avenged his only defeat of the Tournament by defeating Griffin Parriott (5-3 SV).
One of the Tournaments most surprising upsets came at 126 lbs. as Kiski Prep wrestler Justin Patrick defeated New York senior Nick Piccininni (5-4). Piccininni is one of the top ranked wrestlers in the Nation at 126 lbs. and will be heading to Oklahoma State next year. Patrick continued into the Championship semifinals but fell to eventual Champion Chad Red of Indiana (10-2). Piccininni bounced back and earned revenge against Patrick in the consolation semifinals earning a (8-6) decision in their second meeting in two days. Patrick ended up in fifth place.
At 152 lbs. three (3) Pennsylvania wrestlers earned medals as South Park junior Jake Wentzel finished in third place. Wentzel, a 2x PIAA State Medalist, stormed into the semifinals with an impressive (3-0) decision over senior and Arizona State recruit Josh Maruca (Franklin Regional) in the quarterfinals. Jake fell in the semifinals to eventual Tournament Champion Thomas Bullard of Georgia (7-0). Wentzel didn’t let the defeat hurt him as he rallied back to place third with two straight victories earning his first career Super 32 Medal. Josh Maruca was able to withstand fellow Young Guns wrestler and Punxsutawney Area junior Kaleb Young in the consolation round (5-1). Maruca went on to finish in fifth place while Young placed seventh.
Mifflinburg Area senior Cole Walter went (2-2) last season at the Super 32 Challenge but this season at 160 lbs. Cole earned a fourth place medal. He was joined by Altoona Area senior DJ Hollingshead who placed seventh. Another Pennslyvania wrestler significantly improved on his 2013 Super 32 finish. At 170 lbs. Austin Bell (Belle Vernon Area) advanced into the Championship semifinals with a (3-2) decision over WPIAL rival Jake Shaffer (Greater Latrobe) score (3-2) in the quarterfinals. Bell, a junior who went (2-2) at the 2013 Super 32, fell in the semifinals but earned two victories to finish in third place. Junior Greg Bullsak (South Park) dropped his second match of the Tournament but fought back with five (5) straight wins to advance into the medal round. Bulsak picked up a hard fought (1-0) victory over Jake Shaffer before falling to Father Judge senior and Maryland recruit Idris White score (6-5). Went would end up in fifth place while Bulsak went on to finish in eighth.
At 182 lbs. Franklin junior Dakota Geer showed why he is considered a State Champion threat with a seventh place finish. Geer, who was a 2014 PIAA State third place medalist, picked up a (7-4) decision over fellow 2014 PIAA State Medalist Corey Hazel (Penns Valley Area). Senior Corey Hazel would fall one victory from the medal round. For the second straight year junior Drew Phipps (Norwin) finished in fourth place at the Super 32 Challenge competing at 195 lbs. Phipps advanced into the championship semifinals but fell to New York’s Kevin Mulligan (2-0) and finished in fourth. Fellow WPIAL star and pinning machine Zach Smith of North Allegheny had an impressive performance finishing in fifth at 195 lbs. The senior, a 2014 PIAA State Qualifier, dropped his first match of the Tournament to New York’s Thomas Lane but shot of five straight victories in the consolation round before falling in the consolation semifinals. In the fifth place bout Smith again faced Thomas Lane but this time the North Allegheny Tiger pinned Lane in (3:37) to earn fifth place. Saegertown senior Dylan Reynolds was unable to earn his first career Super 32 Medal falling one victory short of the medal round.
The final Super 32 Challenge Champion was Bethlehem Catholic senior Andrew Dunn. In 2013 Dunn placed fourth at the Super 32 Challenge at 285 lbs. but this season the Belt was his with five straight victories. In the semifinals Dunn secured a well earned victory over Burrell senior Alan Beattie by fall in (5:36). Dunn, a 2014 PIAA State Medalist at 220 lbs., captured the Super 32 Challenge Belt with a (8-5) decision over Massachusetts senior Ian Butterbrodt. After falling to Dunn Alan Beattie picked up two straight pins to finish in third place.
Super 32 Challenge Placement Matches (From InterMat)
1st: Cade Olivas (St. John Bosco, Calif.) maj. dec. Thomas Cox (Deer Park, N.Y.), 16-2
3rd: Dane Heberlein (Alexander, N.Y.) dec. Drew Mattin (Delta, Ohio), 3-1
5th: Joseph Silva (Lake Highland Prep, Fla.) dec. Shane Metzler (West Morris Central, N.J.), 5-2
7th: Roderick Mosley, Jr. (Heritage Hall, Okla.) dec. Jake Silverstein (Hauppauge, N.Y.), 4-3
1st: Spencer Lee (Franklin Regional, Pa.) pinned Noah Baughman (Wadsworth, Ohio), 0:26
3rd: Danny Vega (Ironwood Ridge, Ariz.) dec. Garrett Pepple (East Noble, Ind.), 2-1
5th: Mitch Moore (St. Paris Graham, Ohio) dec. Sebastian Rivera (Christian Brothers, N.J.), 7-2
7th: Jaden Mattox (Grove City Central Crossing, Ohio) dec. Jay Albis (John Jay East Fishkill, N.Y.), 7-0
1st: Yianni Diakomihalis (Hilton, N.Y.) dec. Daton Fix (Sand Springs, Okla.), 5-0
3rd: Kyle Norstrem (Brandon, Fla.) pinned Eli Stickley (St. Paris Graham, Ohio), 1:28
5th: Steven Simpson (St. Mary’s Ryken, Md.) dec. Tyler Warner Claymont (Ohio), 6-1
7th: Ben Freeman (Walled Lake Central, Mich.) dec. Michael May (Dayton Christian, Ohio), 12-5
1st: Chad Red (New Palestine, Ind.) dec. Jose Rodriguez (Massillon Perry, Ohio), 7-0
3rd: Kanen Storr (Leslie, Mich.) by forfeit over Nick Piccininni (Ward Melleville, N.Y.)
5th: Justin Patrick (Kiski Prep, Pa.) dec. Lincoln Olson (Davison, Mich.), 8-5
7th: Ben Lamantia (St. Anthony’s, N.Y.) dec. Jake Bridnley (Lake Highland Prep, Fla.), 6-2
1st: Luke Pletcher (Greater Latrobe, Pa) dec. Mike D’Angelo (Commack, N.Y.), 4-2
3rd: Jared Prince (Palm Harbor University, Fla.) maj. dec. George Phillippi (Derry Area, Pa.), 11-0
5th: Mitch McKee (St. Michael-Albertville, Minn.) dec. Sal Profaci (Monroe, N.J.), 5-1
7th: Cameron Kelly (Bellbrook, Ohio) by forfeit over Jonathan Furnas (Olentangy Liberty, Ohio)
1st: Sam Krivus (Hempfield Area, Pa.) dec. Davion Jeffries (Broken Arrow, Okla.), 5-2
3rd: Nate Limmex (Grand Rapids Catholic Central, Pa.) dec. Jared Verkleeren (Belle Vernon, Pa.), 3-1 OT
5th: Cameron Coy (Penn Trafford, Pa.) by forfeit over Jaydin Clayton (Father Tolton Catholic, Mo.)
7th: Brent Moore (St. Paris Graham, Ohio) pinned Richard Screptock (Oregon Clay, Ohio), 1:38
1st: Michael Kemerer (Franklin Regional, Pa.) dec. Max Thomsen (Union, Iowa), 9-4
3rd: Hayden Hidlay (Mifflin County, Pa.) dec. Patricio Lugo (South Dade, Fla.), 5-2
5th: Griffin Parriott (New Prague, Minn.) dec. Kevin Budock (Good Counsel, Md.), 3-1
7th: Jake Adcock (Pope, Ga.) by forfeit over Robert Lee (Kaukauna, Wis.)
1st: Thomas Bullard (Archer, Ga.) dec. Dayton Racer (Bettendorf, Iowa), 5-4, tiebreaker
3rd: Jake Wentzel (South Park, Pa.) dec. Drew Hughes (Lowell, Ind.), 2-0
5th: Josh Maruca (Franklin Regional, Pa.) by forfeit over Joseph Tavoso (Delbarton, N.J.)
7th: Kaleb Young (Punxsatawney, Pa.) dec. Neal Richards (Matoaca, Va.), 4-2
1st: Fox Baldwin (Osceola, Fla.) dec. Alex Marinelli (St. Paris Graham, Ohio), 8-6
3rd: Josh Ugalde (Bound Brook, N.J.) dec. Cole Walter (Mifflinburg, Pa.), 3-2
5th: Daniel Bullard (Archer, Ga.) dec. Corbin Allen (Hanover, Va.), 8-6
7th: D.J. Hollingshead (Altoona, Pa.) dec. Owen Webster (Shakopee, Minn.), 5-3
1st: Taylor Lujan (Carrollton, Ga.) dec. Brett Donner (Wall Township, N.J.), 11-5
3rd: Austin Bell (Belle Vernon, Pa.) dec. Trevor Allard (Mexico, N.Y.), 5-3
5th: Sean Kennedy (Riverdale, Tenn.) dec. Idris White (Father Judge, Pa.), 5-4
7th: Fritz Hoehn (North Andover, Mass.) dec. Greg Bulsak (South Park, Pa.), 7-3
1st: Zahid Valencia (St. John Bosco, Calif.) dec. Kollin Moore (Norwayne, Ohio), 9-4
3rd: Blake Rypel (Indianapolis Cathedral, Ind.) dec. Ben Darmstadt (Elyria, Ohio), 8-7
5th: Dylan Wisman (Millbrook, Va.) technical fall Jack Harris (Urbana, Ohio), 4:34
7th: Dakota Geer (Franklin, Pa.) dec. Willie Bivens (Eastern Guilford, N.C.), 7-5
1st: Hunter Ritter (John Carroll, Md.) dec. Kevin Mulligan (Bergen Catholic, N.J.), 8-2
3rd: Chance Cooper (Timberland, Mo.) dec. Drew Phipps (Norwin, Pa.), 9-2
5th: Zach Smith (North Allegheny, Pa.) pinned Thomas Lane (Garden City, N.Y.), 3:37
7th: Christian Araneo (Ward Mellville N.Y.) maj. dec. Kevin Snyder (Good Counsel, Md.), 10-2
1st: Patrick Grayson (Colonial Forge, Va.) dec. Yousef Hemida (Mamaroneck, N.Y.), 8-6
3rd: Christian Colucci (St. Peter’s Prep, N.J.) dec. Jacob Cooper (Springport, Mich.), 8-3
5th: John Kramer (Wilson Central, Tenn.) via opponent disqualification
7th: Vincent Feola (Walt Whitman, N.Y.) dec. Cary Miller (Greensboro College, N.C.), 9-5
1st: Andrew Dunn (Bethlehem Catholic, Pa.) dec. Ian Butterbrodt (St. John’s Prep, Mass.), 8-5
3rd: Alan Beattie (Burrell, Pa.) pinned Bucky Dennis (Port Charlotte, Fla.), 3:12
5th: Sam Bouis (Lancaster, Va.) dec. Andrew Snyder (Princess Anne, Va.), 5-2
7th: Adam Olsen (High Point Central, N.C.) by forfeit over Zack Mauldin (Lexington, N.C.)