Scranton holds off Abington Heights in Lackawanna League wrestling match

By Robert Tomkavage -

S. ABINGTON TWP. — Scranton, boosted by three wins by pinfall, defeated Abington Heights, 36-33, in a Lackawanna League Division 1 wrestling match Jan. 24.

Despite the close loss, which included some controversy, Abington Heights head coach Steve Peters was pleased with his team’s effort.

“For a team that hasn’t filled the lineup all year, we’re wrestling really tough,” Peters said. “I couldn’t be more proud of the work they are putting in. I’m not quite sure what happened here today, but we looked pretty good on the mat.”

Abington Heights sophomore Ty Wilmot opened the match with a 3-1 decision over Osman Bakradze in the 126-pound bout to give the Comets an early 3-0 lead.

“I couldn’t be happier with the job that Ty is doing,” Peters said. “He’s only a second-year wrestler and he has 10 pins on the season. That’s pretty impressive.”

Scranton’s Michael Tuffy pinned Christopher Hobbie in 3:22 at 132 pounds to give the Knights a 6-3 advantage.

Abington Heights’ James Brown won by forfeit at 138 to put the Comets ahead, 9-6.

Scranton’s Jeremiah Oakes pinned Jacob Rosenstein in 1:48 at 145 pounds as Scranton regained the lead, 12-9, in the seesaw match.

Abington Heights’ Sam Northup earned an 8-2 decision over Matt Rink in the 152-pound bout to square the match, 12-12.

“He was on his offense and that’s what happens when you wrestle to score points,” Peters said.

Scranton’s William Evanitsky won by forfeit at 160 pounds to earn six points for the Knights.

Jacob Burgette defeated Christopher Langan by a 9-5 decision at 170 pounds and Scranton (2-2) led, 21-12.

Aidan Price earned a hard-fought 7-6 decision in overtime against Jehovany Gbedan in the 182-pound match to pull Abington Heights (1-3) within 21-15.

“He’s just coming back off a month-long injury,” Peters said of Price. “I’m only looking for him to get better from here, but that was a nice win in his second match back.”

Scranton’s Brandon Crusen pinned Gavin Drake in 1:21 in the 195-pound bout to give the Knights a 12-point lead.

Abington Heights’ Tre Kerrigan won by forfeit at 220 pounds and the Comets were back within six.

R.J. Knott pinned Scranton’s Roy Gonzalez in 1:58 in the 285-pound bout to tie the match at 27. It was Knott’s 10th win by pin this season.

“R.J. is only weighing in at about 215 to 218 and is going up to heavyweight (285),” Peters said. “He’s giving up a lot of pounds for us and is still getting the job done. I’m real proud of him, as well.”

Abington Heights freshman Brandon Grogan followed with a pin of Bryan Atariguana in the 106-pound match in 1:48 to give the Comets a 33-27 advantage.

“Grogan is having an excellent season,” Peters said. “He’s 22-2 and is definitely making a name for himself.”

Scranton’s Dwight Abram Jr. defeated Keane Kiat by decision, 9-8, at 113 pounds to bring the Knights back within three.

There was a lengthy discussion following that bout between the referee, coaches and scorekeepers regarding the awarding of points, but the result stood.

Robert Zelinski clinched the victory for Scranton with a win by forfeit in the 120-pound weight class.

By Robert Tomkavage

Reach Robert Tomkavage at 570-704-3941 or on Twitter @rtomkavage.

Reach Robert Tomkavage at 570-704-3941 or on Twitter @rtomkavage.