The Tunkhannock Area wrestling team has somewhat quietly developed into a solid program in the Wyoming Valley Conference, and enters the 2017 season looking to continue making noise.
The Tigers finished with a 5-1 record and in a three-way tie atop Division 1, marking the fourth consecutive year Tunkhannock won at least a share of the title.
Seven wrestlers then went on to qualify for regionals, including second place finishes from now senior Sam Rice and junior Tommy Traver, and a first place finish from now sophomore Gavin D’Amato.
Six of those seven are back for the Tigers and head coach Bob Hegedty, who will use that experience as a solid base for this year’s squad.
“We should be solid right on through,” Hegedty said. “We don’t have as much depth as we’ve had in the past, but we should be competitive in most of our matches and in our tough tournament schedule. Our goal last year was to compete for the district finals, and while we’ll have our hands full, that’s our goal again.”
Indeed, after making program history in winning the school’s first Division 1 title and District 2 Class 3A wrestling duals championship, Tunkhannock finished fourth in the duals last season, but brings back a slew of experience to get back to this year’s finals.
“We have some good, young kids as well and some freshmen working into the lineup,” Hegedty added. “Some have personal goals that they want to meet, but we all want to get back to the state tournament. We should be pretty good down low and have some battle tested youth down there that will help us compete.”
With a more experienced group, the work in the wrestling room has a quicker pace to it, though some of the basics to the sport have not been overlooked.
“We’ve been getting some conditioning underneath us and working on technique in the early going,” Hegedty said. “That should help us be ready to go this weekend when we’ll be up against something a little bit different.”
This weekend will see Tunkhannock in its first competition of the season at the Pottsville Duals at Martz Hall against schools from District 3, District 7 and District 11.
Seniors Sam Rice, Connor Munley, Thomas Parry, Phillip Moyer and David Gavek; juniors: Tommy Traver, Dustin Henry, Carl Anthony, Shane Sherwood, Logan Hegedty and Cody White; sophomores: David Evans, Gavin D’Amato, Ethan Munley, Harry Thrash and Tyler Chesla; and freshmen Matt Rosentel, Sean Meder, Luke Carpenter, Connor Elgin, Brian Christ.
Dec. 9, at Pottsville Duals, 9 a.m.
Dec. 13, at Scranton, 7 p.m.
Dec. 15, at Sheetz Holiday Classic, TBA.
Dec. 16, at Sheetz Holiday Classic, TBA.
Dec. 20, at Wyoming Valley West, 7 p.m.
Dec. 21, Towanda, 7 p.m.
Dec. 28, Tunkhannock Holiday Tournament, 11 a.m.
Dec. 29, Tunkhannock Holiday Tournament, 10 a.m.
Jan. 5, at WVC Tourney, 5 p.m.
Jan. 6, at WVC Tourney, 9 a.m.
Jan. 10, at Dallas, 7 p.m.
Jan. 11, Hazleton Area, 7 p.m.
Jan. 17, Coughlin, 7 p.m.
Jan. 19, at New Oxford Tourney, 5 p.m.
Jan. 20, at New Oxford Tourney, 9:30 a.m.
Jan. 24, at Crestwood, 7 p.m.
Jan. 26, Pittston, 7 p.m.
Feb. 7, Meyers, 7 p.m.
Feb. 14, Abington Heights, 7 p.m.