CLEARFIELD – Two of Curwensville’s wrestlers made the semi-finals on Friday’s opening night of the District IX AA Championships. Junior 113 pounder Blake Passarelli (24-4) and heavyweight senior Steven McClure (27-2) both will wrestle in Saturday morning’s semi-finals matches, and are both favored to win. Four other Curwensville wrestlers are alive in the consolation wrestle backs, fighting to place in the top four and earn a trip to next weeks regional tournament in Sharon.
Passarelli received a bye in the preliminary round before he won his quarter-finals match by fall over Kane’s Ben Westerburg in 5:11. He will wrestle Oswayo Valley’s Dylan Pesock (24-5) in the semi-finals.
McClure pinned both of his opponents to reach the semis. In the first round, he pinned Cranberry’s Trey Wright in 4:23. McClure wasted no time in his quarter-finals match, stacking up Ridgway’s Jacob Kunselman in just 1:13. McClure will wrestle Brockway’s Hayden Thompson in his semi-finals match.
Alive in the wrestle backs are freshman Jake McCracken (20-11) at 152, sophomore Zach Holland (17-4) at 132, and junior’s Mason Gasper (8-10) at 120 and Cole Bressler (13-14) at 160.
McCracken opened up his inaugural district tournament with a 3-0 decision over Coudersport’s Thomas Wilson before falling to the third seed Colby Keane 7-0. In his single wrestle back match, McCracken major decisioned Redbank Valley’s Coltin Bartley 13-4. He will face Brookville’s Jacob Cable in his next consolation match.
Holland won his preliminary round by fall over Oswayo Valley’s Patrick Rounsville in 3:31 before losing to the third seed Tyler Thompson of Bradford in the quarter-finals, 10-1. He then wrestled back and won his first consolation match over Port Allegany’s Montgomery Tanner 6-1 to stay alive.
Gasper was major decisioned by Johnsonburg’s Nolan Shaffer in the quarter-finals. Gasper received a forfeit in his consolation round. He will meet Cranberry’s Evan Hepler next.
Bressler received a bye in the preliminaries before losing to Coudersport’s third seed Julian Smith 15-0. In the second round of consolation, Bressler pinned Redbank Valley’s Noah Anderson in 2:50. Bressler will next wrestle Brookville’s Cole LaBenne.
Eliminated from competition are sophomore’s Ty Guelich (2-10) at 126, Caleb Stiles (2-9) at 138, Adam Straw (13-11) at 145, and NIck Holbert (4-13) at 170. Straw won his first wrestle back match by forfeit before losing in the next round.
Curwensville currently sits in 12th place out of 17 in the team standings with 29 points. Brookville is leading the AA tournament with 70 points, and they have an incredible nine wrestlers in the mornings semi-finals.
Wrestling will resume at 10:30 am Saturday morning with championship semifinals and consolation quarterfinals. Consy semifinals will complete the session. The Parade of Champions is set to kick off after the District IX Hall of Fame inductions at 3:30.
As always, the admissions doors will open one hour before the start of each session, with tickets $6 for adults and $3 for students. There are two scheduled sessions today.
To see live, updated brackets, courtesy of FloWrestling, click here.