Golden Tide’s Passarelli Earns Fourth Trip to AA State Tourney

SHARON — Coming back through the wrestlebacks of a tournament like the Northwest Class AA Regional is such a grind, especially after suffering a first-match loss, but Blake Passarelli found a way Saturday to become Curwensville Area High School’s first four-time state qualifier.

The senior 126-pounder will be going to Hershey in mid-week as the region fourth-placer after winning three of four matches over six-plus hours in the Sharon High School gym.

“I’m proud as ever of Blake,” Golden Tide coach Dean Swatsworth said. “He won the matches he needed to win to have a chance to wrestle next week.”

Two other Golden Tide hopefuls, junior Zach Holland (145) and senior Cole Bressler (160) were eliminated in the morning consolation rounds.

Passarelli, the District 9 runner-up, began his uphill climb with a 10-2 win over District 10 seventh-placer Michael Berger.

He worked three takedowns, two in the middle period when he took control and one in the third, tacking on a nearfall for the major decision.

“Blake shot the whole time,” Swatsworth said. “He had a nice duck-under to a crotch-lift on the last one to put the kid on his back.”

The next two wins were much more difficult.

In the consolation quarterfinals, Passarelli hit a snap-and-go-behind takedown for a 3-1 sudden victory over D-10 sixth-placer Jaden Reagle of Saegertown. They had matched escapes in regulation.

“Blake got in on some shots, but they had a pile of stalemates,” Swatsworth said.

Next up for Passarelli in the consolation semifinals, labeled the blood round because the loser goes home, was D-10 silver medalist Andrew Ischo of Reynolds.

Both placed in last year’s state tourney, Passarelli eighth at 113 and Ischo sixth at 120.

When the buzzer sounded, Passarelli had locked up his medal with a 2-1 squeaker in what was another tough, physical duel, with all the points resulting from breakaways.

Passarelli was awarded a second escape in the middle period because Ischo had to take a second injury, which by rule gave the Golden Tide standout his choice for the re-start.

He opted for the bottom position again and quickly broke free for what proved to be the deciding point.

“It was something,” Swatsworth said. “Both kids were sticking their heads right in there and shooting. Blake put everything together he needed to win. It was one of the best matches he’s wrestled that he’s won this year.”

The bronze medal bout with D-10 third-placer Will Burgess was a rematch of their championship quarterfinal that Burgess won 7-0.

Once again, Passarelli was unable to dent his defense and lost 4-0, giving up an escape in the second period and a nearfall in the third period when Burgess hooked up a cradle.

“It almost was the same exact thing as the first match,” Swatsworth said.

Passarelli (27-7) had clinched his spot on the podium, though.

“That was one of his goals,” Swatsworth noted. “Now he lives to see another week.”

Holland, one of four D-9 champions who were upended Friday night, split his two consolation matches.

The Golden Tide junior dominated D-9 fourth-placer Dalton Bish of Redbank Valley 10-0 with three takedowns on blast doubles and two turnovers in the first consy round.

However, he failed to repeat last week’s D-9 semifinal win (3-2) over Colton Gietler of Oswayo Valley and finished the season at 6-2.

The D-9 third-placer recorded the crucial takedown and reversed early in the second period before surrendering two escapes in a 4-2 victory.

“Zach kind of walked into a double and wasn’t able to fend it off, and when you’re going 1-2-2, that takedown is big and sets the tone for that match,” Swatsworth said. “But I’m proud of him for overcoming the injury to win a district title and coming here to wrestle hard at regionals.”

Bressler (15-13) wound up with a tough draw in the first consolation round, and the Jason Bratt of Harborcrek, the D-10 fourth-placer, ended the senior’s career with a fall at 3:43. Bratt went on to claim third place.

“Cole just looked undersized for 160, but he wrestled hard and wrestled physical every match,” Swatsworth said. “That’s all you can ask for.”

District 9 had only two champions, Kane 160-pounder Alec English and Brookville heavyweight Colby Whitehill earning their second gold medals.

District 10 boasted six repeat titlists.

Reynolds 120-pounder Beau Bayless moved into very elite company by breezing to his fourth championship.

The Harvard-bound Raider has amassed 156 wins.

Cambridge Springs 132-pounder Tye Varndell is not that far behind with 147 wins after climbing to the top of the podium for the third time.

Grabbing the gold for the second time were Gary Steen of Reynolds at 106, Kenny Kiser of Saegertown at 138, Gavin Henry of Greenville at 182 and Jacob McMaster of Greenville at 220.

Varndell (39-0), McMaster (44-0) and Whitehill (35-0) will take spotless records to the Giant Center in Hershey for the opening round of the state tourney Thursday morning.

The other champs are Logan Jaquay of Eisenhower at 113, Bryce Knauf of Greenville at 126, Caiden Mooney of Northwestern at 145, Sully Allen of Sharon at 152, Brady Gentile of Greenville at 170, Gavin Henry of Union City at 182 and freshman Cael Black of Eisenhower at 195.

The team chase was no contest again as Reynolds piled up 198 points thanks to nine placewinners.

Greenville was second with 115 points, while Kane was third with 97.5 and Brockway finished fourth with 85.5. Both of the D-9 teams had four state qualifiers.

D-10 wound up with 41 placewinners and D-9 with 15, including five silver medalists.

For the first time, fifth-place matches were contested for the sole purpose of determining an alternate should one of the top four be unable to compete in the state tournament.

Complete results courtesy PA-wrestling.com can be found here.

TEAM STANDINGS AND KEYS

1. Reynolds (Rey), 198 points; 2. Greenville (Gr), 115; 3. Kane (K), 95.5; 4. Brockway (Bw), 87.5; 5. Union City (JC), 82; 6. Conneaut (Con), 74.5; 7. Eisenhower €, 70; 8. General McLane (GM), 69.5); 9. Brookville (Bv), 57; 10. Saegertown (Sae), 50; 11. (tie) Harbor Creek (HC) and Northwestern (Nw), 43; 13. (tie) Cochranton (Co), Port Allegany (PA) and Redbank Valley (RV0, 38; 16. Sharon (Sha), 34.5; 17. Titusville (T), 33; 18. (tie) Commodore Perry (CP) and Girard (Gir), 27; 20. Corry (Cor), 25; 21. (tie) Cambridge Springs (CS) and Sheffield (Shef), 23; 23. Slippery Rock (SR), 22; 24. Jamestown (Ja), 19.5; 25. (tie) Maplewood (Map) and Mercer (Mer), 26; 27. Grove City (GC), 15; 28. Coudersport (Cou), 28; 29. Curwensville (Cur), 13; 30. Johnsonburg (J), 10; 31. Hickory (H), 8; 32. Fort LeBoeuf (FL), 7.5); 33. (tie) Franklin (F) and Oswayo Valley (OV), 7; 35. Northeast (NE); 36. West Middlesex (WM), 2; 36. (tie) Clarion (Cl), Iroquois (I), Ridgway (R), Seneca (Sen), Sharpsville (Sv) and Youngsville (Y), 0.

CHAMPIONSHIP FINALS

(Wrestler’s name preceded by district-place and followed by grade, record and team)

106 – (10-1) Gary Steen, 10, (25-1), Rey, major dec. (9-1) Owen Reinsel, 9, (32-4), Bv, 9-1.

113 – (10-1) Logan Jaquay, 11, (34-3), E, dec. (10-2), Andrew Brest, 10, (35-6), GM, 8-2.

120 – (10-1) Beau Bayless, 12, (33-6), Rey, pinned (9-1) Braedon Johnson, 10, (33-2), PA, 3:51

126 – (10-1) Bryce Knauf, 12, (41-3), Gr, won by injury default (9-1) Anthony Glasl, 11, (33-2), Bw.

132 – (10-1) Tye Varndell, 12, (39-0), CS, dec. (10-2) John Wheeler, 12, (32-5), Nw, 9-3.

138 – (10-2) Kenny Kiser, 11, (37-4), Sae. dec. (10-3) Rocco Bartolo, 12, (30-12), Rey, 6-2.

145 – (10-2) Caiden Mooney, 12, (30-7), Nw, dec. (10-1) Jackson Spires, 10, (12-4), GM, 6-2.

152 – (10-2) Sully Allen, 11, (35-2), Sha, dec. (10-1) Mason Karpinski, 12, (43-3), Gr, 5-2.

160 – (9-1) Alec English, 12, (32-1), K, dec. ((10-1) Peyton Hearn, 12, (35-3), Co, 8-5.

170 – (10-1) Brady Gentile, 12, (41-3), Gr, dec. (9-1) Ethan Finch, 10, (29-9), Shef, 14-7.

182 – (10-1) Gavin Henry, 12, (38-3), UC, dec. (9-1) Garrett McClintick, 12, (33-2), Bw, 5-2.

195 – (10-5) Cael Black, 9, (34-8), E, dec. (10-6) Austin Kelly, 12, (27-16), Co, 3-2.

220 – (10-1) Jacob McMaster, 12, (44-0), Gr, major dec. (10-2), Josef Bauer, 12, (30-7), E, 16-6.

285 – (9-1) Colby Whitehill, 11, (35-0), Bv, pinned (10-1) Derrick Skeehan, 12, (27-4), Rey, :55.

CONSOLATION FINALS FOR THIRD PLACE

106 – (10-2) Hunter Robinson, 9, (34-6), GM, dec. (9-3), Mark Palmer, 9, (32-10), Bw, 5-3.

113 – (10-3) Connor Pierce, 9, (32-6), HC, dec. (10-6) Cole Bayless, 11, (22-11), Rey, 5-3.

120 – (10-2), Hunter Thompson, 11, (39-4), T, dec. (10-3) Alec Kightlinger, 11, (35-14), Sae, 7-0.

126 – (10-3) Will Burgess, 12, (32-5), UC, dec. (9-2) Blake Passarelli, 12, (27-8), Cur, 4-0.

132 – (10-3) Kaeden Berger, Rey, major dec. (9-1) Ethan Wiant, 11, (33-8), RV, 8-0.

138 – (10-1) Alex Chess, 11, (37-4) Mer, dec. (9-1) Noah Blankenship, 12, (28-8) K, 5-2.

145 – (10-3) Wes Davenport, 12, (33-10), Co, major dec. (10-4) Marshall Marfinetz, 12, (30-11), Gir, 16-4.

152 – (10-3) Gage Musser, 10, (37-7), CP, dec. (10-4) Brendan Laird, 12, (37-12), Co, 3-2.

160 – (10-4) Jason Bratt, 12, (32-6), HC, dec. (10-2) Hunter Thompson, 12, (24-11), Rey, 4-3 (TB).

170 – (9-3) Cameron Whisner, 11, (29-9), K, dec. (10-3), Cole Toy, 10, (25-11), Rey, 4-3.

182 – (10-2) Kaleb Kamerer, 12, (31-5), SR, dec. (9-3) Teddy Race, 11, (21-6), K, 10-8.

195 – (9-1) Eric Johnson, 11, (32-7), Bw, dec. (9-3) Elijah Ayers, 12, (31-5), Cou, 9-5.

220 – (10-4) Wyatt Owen, 11, (34-9), Rey, dec. (10-3) Joey King, 10, (36-7), Map, 6-3.

285 – (10-2) Matt Long, UC, 12, (35-6), won by injury default over Max Wills, 12, (30-11), Gr.

CONSOLATION FINALS FOR FIFTH PLACE (WINNERS)

106 – (9-2) Bryent Johnson, 11, (23-7), PA

113 – (10-7) Seth Donovan, 11, (38-12), T

120 – (9-3) Brayden Altobelli, 12, (29-9), RV

126 – (10-2) Andrew Ischo, 12, (26-11), Rey

132 – (10-4) Matthew Leehan, 10, (36-15), GM

138 – (10-5) Justin Boozer, 11, (29-12), Co

145 – (10-6) Kaleb Brown, 12, (12-10), Co

152 – (9-1) Aiden Hulings, 12, (28-5), K

160 – (10-3) Tyler Greer, 12, (35-11), GC

170 – (10-7) Matt Petrilla, 11, (32-13), Cor

182 – (10-3) Bryce McCloskey, 11, (24-7), Rey

195 – (10-3) Hayden Linkerhof, 9, (33-9), Cor

220 – (9-1) Ty Stahli, 12, (29-8), K

285 – (10-3) Jordan Schell, 10, (30-8), Gi

CONSOLATION SEMIFINALS

126 – Passarelli, Cur, dec. Ischo, Rey, 2-1

CONSOLATION QUARTERFINALS

126 – Passarelli, Cur, dec. (10-6) John Reagle, 10, Sae, 3-1 (SV).

145 f– (9-3) Colton Gietler, 11, (27-12), dec. (9-1) Zach Holland, 11, (6-2), Cur, 4-2.

CONSOLATION ROUND 1

126 – Passarelli, Cur, major dec. (10-7), 9, (21-18) Michael Berger, Mer, 10-2.

145 – Holland, Cur, major dec. (9-4), 10, (16-11), Dalton Bish, RV, 10-0.

160 – Bratt, HC, pinned (9-4) Cole Bressler, 12, (15-13), Cur, 3:43.

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