Lehman’s Depth Keys Win Over Tunkhannock
TUNKHANNOCK — Trailing by double-digits for much of the dual meet, Tunkhannock wrestling scored two clutch pins in its final four bouts.
The falls could have put the Tigers within a major decision of a tie. The lead would have been in reach, too, if not for what followed each victory.
Lake-Lehman erased the late six-point swings by sending out a wrestler by himself for a forfeited win, and the Black Knights stayed ahead for a 43-33 win on the road Tuesday night. Their depth helped preserve the Knights’ undefeated record in Wyoming Valley Conference Division 2 play and strengthen their grip on a top seed for the District 2 duals.
Injuries to Tunkhannock’s two former state qualifiers proved to be too much to withstand. Nevertheless, tough wrestling by a few freshmen kept the Tigers close despite senior Tommy Traver watching from a wheelchair following a recently broken leg and junior David Evans remaining sidelined with his arm in a sling.
“I didn’t expect the outcome to be like that,” Tunkhannock coach Bob Hegedty said. “The kids stepped up; they wrestled tough. … Overall, I thought we did well. I think the kids got a charge when Tommy showed up.”
Jake Trumbower (160 pounds), Nick Zaboski (170), and T.J. Meehan (220) earned pins for Lake-Lehman (2-0 Division 2), which added 18 more points on three forfeits. Josh Bonomo (138) had a major decision and Hunter Burke (145) topped Gavin D’Amato, 8-3, in a reversal to his loss by decision in their WVC championship bout earlier this month.
All of those bonus puts put Tunkhannock behind, 31-15, with five bouts remaining.
But a Tigers rally started when heavyweight Jhamal Zacharias used a major size advantage to peel Cole Robbins Long off his back and drop him for a pin. Lehman coach J.J. Konigus said Zacharias outweighed his wrestler by more than 80 pounds.
Action then switched to the lightweights, where Owen Woods (106) pinned Mason Konigus in a WVC semifinal rematch and Matt Rosentel (120) also won by fall.
Forfeits wiped away the comeback effort.
“They did well. That was their both possible moves they could make,” Konigus said of the Tigers. “Hats off to Hegedty for his kids doing that. They rallied well. It’s just tough when you give up that many forfeits.”
Woods was one of a few Tunkhannock ninth-graders to step up. Frankie Scranta (185) finished off a back-and-forth battle with a pin, while Jeffrey Meader (192) looked like he could get stuck on his back until his quick counter and takedown clinched a decision.
“You kind of like to wish and think what could’ve been. … We thought it was going to be a great dual,” Hegedty said. “Hopefully, we get everybody healed back up before the 22nd of February.”
If seeds fall the right way, Tunkhannock could get another shot at Lake-Lehman in the D2 duals. The Tigers can still finish top-four in the division for a WVC berth in the tournament.
They’ll still have to finish the team season with much of their star power depleted. But Hegedty has said he hopes Evans is back for individual districts, and Traver — who surprised the team with his appearance Tuesday — isn’t giving up on his senior season yet, either.
“This is just a bump in the road. After this, it’s going to be depend on me,” Traver said. “Hopefully, five weeks I’ll be out of this (cast) and back on the mat.”
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