The Super 32 is a tournament where future wrestling stars are born. Pennsylvania wrestlers have routinely found success in Greensboro, NC and below are five wrestler who stood out from the large field of Keystone State wrestlers for their performances. Photo of Carter Dibert by Sam Janicki.
113 Pounds: Carter Dibert – Franklin Regional
The 2019 PIAA State Champion recently committed to Arizona State and it looks like Sun Devil head coach Zeke Jones got a wrestler who can grind through a tournament as the junior went 9-1 in Greensboro, NC. He entered The Super 32 as the thirteenth seed – ranked #17 in the Nation by Flo at 113 pounds. Last year at the Super 32 Dibert went 3-2 at 106 pounds.
After opening with two wins, Carter faced off with Colorado sophomore Brady Hankin in the Round of 32. Hankin was the 20th seed and ranked #13 in the Nation by Flo. He connected on four takedowns and added in a set of back points to win it 13-6. In the Round of 16 he faced the fourth seed Jacob Rivera of Selma, CA – who entered ranked #12 in the Nation by Flo. Dibert nearly scored on the edge but Rivera somehow, on his back, rolled out of danger before giving up the takedown. Rivera’s defense again got him out of trouble and this time earned him a takedown when he countered a strong double from Dibert. He escaped in the second to go up 3-0 on Dibert heading into the third. From the top position, his best, Dibert scored two back-points on a tilt, but it wasn’t enough as he fell 3-2.
Unlike last season, Carter didn’t just pack it in after suffering a difficult defeat. Instead he rattled off six straight wins to claim third place. Along the way he defeated three wrestlers who came in ranked Top 10 in the Nation by Flo. He knocked off #8 Joziah Fry of Rhode Island, #6 Braxton Brown of Texas, and #3 Jeremiah Reno of Missouri. It’s safe to say Arizona State made a good call on showing interest in Dibert early.
132 Pounds: Patrick Noonan – Stroudsburg
This is the second time in two weeks Stroudsburg senior Patrick Noonan has been on our Stock Report following a major tournament. This time he came away with a fourth place finish at the Super 32 to add to his three Journeymen Hammers. No, he wasn’t the highest placing Pennsylvania wrestler at 132 pounds – that was BECAHI senior Kenny Herrmann who took second. But, Herrmann is a 3-time State Medalist, a 2019 State Finalist, and entered ranked #7 in the Nation by Flo at 138 pounds. Herrmann was impressive – no doubt, however Noonan get some wins where a year ago – they wouldn’t have happened. He has never earned a medal in Hershey, qualifying twice, and entering the Super 32 ranked #19 in the Nation by Flo.
He came in as the #24 seed and last year he was 3-2 at the Super 32. He beat the 9th, 16th, 15th, 20th, and 5th seeds en route to a fourth place finish including a 6-1 win over Kellyn March (South Dakota) who entered ranked #15 in the Nation at 132 pounds by Flo. Going 8-2 over two days, his only two defeats of the Super 32 came to eventual Champion Joel Vandervere (Illinois) and former Pennsylvania State Medalist Wyatt Henson (Missouri) who came in ranked #6 in the Nation by Flo at 126 pounds.
170 Pounds: Clayton Ulrey – Lower Dauphin
You may be saying to yourself “Clayton Ulrey’s stock is already up, bro.” Or alternatively you may say, “Clayton Ulrey was seeded second and got third – how is his stock going up?”
Neither one would be wrong, however, the tenacity he showed over two days to come back and take third in one of the deeper weights of the Super 32 was impressive in my book. The cherry on top for me was his State Finals rematch with Trey Kibe where he won 3-1. It’s hard to come back from a defeat, it’s an even harder thing to come back from one in the Pennsylvania State Finals. Sure, you are motivated to get revenge but, subconsciously there may doubts or the “what if I lose to him twice” thoughts swirling around. In the State Finals, over six months ago, Ulrey was down 4-2 going into the third period against Kibe and was unable to convert his high shot count into points falling 6-2 as Kibe once again earned a takedown to close it out. This time around Ulrey got on the board first with a takedown and never trailed as they exchanged escapes in a 3-2 win for the Virginia Tech recruit.
Another factor that got me going was Kibe himself. In a match-up between the #2 vs. #4 ranked wrestlers in Pennsylvania’s Class of 2021 Big Board – Kibe defeated Cadet Fargo National Champion Lenny Pinto in the consolation semifinals of the Super 32. That makes Ulrey’s win over him even more impressive.
126 Pounds: Luke Lucerne – Council Rock North
A 2-time PIAA State Medalist from District 1, Luke Lucerne is heading to the Naval Academy next year and continues to improve heading into his senior season. Despite not placing at the Super 32, Luke had a stellar performance that saw him take out two high quality wrestlers from the Keystone State. He went 5-2 overall in Greensboro at 126 pounds falling to the #11 ranked wrestler in the Nation by Flo Jacob Rundell (Illinois) in the Round of 16. In the consolation round Lucerne earned a massive 3-1 win over 2-time Pennsylvania finalist Kurtis Phipps (Norwin) with a 3-1 decision.
He followed that win up with another quality decision over a young stud from Waynesburg – Rocco Welsh. Both wrestlers were runner-ups at The Surge last year when Welsh was in eighth grade. He is one of the top incoming freshman in not only Pennsylvania but the Nation. Lucerne wasn’t worried as he scored on the edge with one second left in the second period to go up 2-1. In the third period he opened it up with an escape followed by two takedowns for the 8-2 win.
The match that eliminated Luke from the tournament was a very poorly reffed match, to put it nicely, and despite having the match won multiple times, he ended up falling in overtime Conor Knopick of Nebraska 6-4.
145 Pounds: Avery Bassett – Midd-West
Like Patrick Noonan this is the second time in two months Avery Bassett is featured on a Stock Report as he once again took his performance to another level – this time in Greensboro. A 2-time PIAA State Qualifier from District 4, Bassett has yet to come away with hardware but so far in his junior season he is putting people on notice that he will be one of the top wrestlers in Class AA. He went 6-3 competing at 145 pounds and finished in 8th place at arguably the toughest tournament in the Nation.
After picking up three regular decisions Bassett found himself in the Round of 16 against Noah Castillo of Lake Highland Prep, FL. The #14 ranked wrestler in the Nation by Flo – Castillo was able to edge out Bassett who scored a takedown in the first but gave up two escapes and a takedown to fall 4-2. He bounced back with a 7-4 decision over Justin McDougald of New York before meeting fellow Pennsylvania wrestler Erik Gibson (Forest Hills). Against Gibson, a sophomore who finished third in the State last season, Bassett was able to come out on top in an exciting 10-8 match that was decided in sudden victory. Down 2-1 in the second Bassett scored two near fall points and a takedown but a reversal in the third was what sent the match into overtime. There he dug deep to finish a double leg after a hard sprawl from Gibson near the edge to win it. After a forfeit in the blood round Bassett was locked into finishing in the top eight.
He fell to Ohio’s Manzona Bryant IV, who came in ranked #3 in the Nation by Flo, in a hard-fought 10-6 defeat. In the eighth place match Bassett was unable to take out Northampton’s Jagger Condomitti, who held a #20 ranking in the Nation by Flo, falling 6-4. After going down 6-0 on Condomitti, Bassett took neutral in the third period where he scored a takedown and near fall but fell short 6-4. Overall he went (6-3) in one of the toughest tournaments around. I would be shocked if he doesn’t come away from Hershey with a medal in 2020.