Beatty gets 100th win, Titans prevail
MOUNT UNION — The 2021 wrestling season is going to be somewhat of a sprint rather than the usual endurance contest for the Mount Union High School wrestling team.
The Trojans fought hard in their second match in as many days, but timely scoring led to multiple victories of the bonus-point variety as Mount Union fell to visiting Tussey Mountain, 31-27 inside the Mount Union gymnasium.
Mount Union’s Bryce Beatty came out with a victory over Trevor Husick in the night’s best bout, as the Trojan’s 120-pounder used a late takedown to squeak out a huge 5-4 decision for his 100th career victory on Friday night in front of the home crowd.
After scoring a takedown late in the first period, Beatty swung out to a 4-1 lead. In the fourth, an escape and a takedown by Husick tightened up the match, but Beatty was able to score an escape as Husick’s last-ditch effort for points came up short.
“I just had to keep battling,” Beatty said. “I was a little gassed, but I know that Trevor is pretty good. We’ve wrestled since we were in club back in third grade. I was able to rely on skills and my conditioning to grind it out there at the end.
“It means a lot to even have a match with everything that has happened but picking up 100 wins feels nice. Especially since I only needed three to get there. It would’ve stunk to come that close, but obviously it feels pretty good to reach that.”
Right after running off the mat, Beatty was picked up by former teammate and assistant coach Jake Ryan, a prestigious Mount Union wrestler in his own right. Beatty and Ryan shared a friendship and have been among two of the best grapplers on the mat for the Trojans the past four seasons.
“It means a lot,” Beatty said of having Ryan there to share the moment. “I’ve been on the team with him since I was in seventh grade and he was in eighth. I’ve known him very well and we really were a really nice 1-2 punch those few years. It was nice to have him here for No. 100.”
Mount Union coach Corey Wertz was elated with Beatty’s effort to finish out the match and to reach the 100-win mark.
“He had a pretty tough kid and he battled it out and that kid fought Bryce and Bryce did what he needed to do. I’m proud of him. He’s a hardworking kid and for him to get 100 wins, that’s something that he deserves.
“We were nervous that we wouldn’t have a season for Bryce’s sake and that was one of his goals,” Wertz added. “We just talked after the match tonight that he doesn’t want to stop there. His goal is to medal at Hershey, and this is his last chance. He’s going to keep working at it and as long as he works hard, good things are going to happen.”
Beatty is off to a 3-0 start to 2021 and is currently ranked No. 7 in Class 2A at 120 pounds. Finishing within that Top 8 is one of the key things on his checklist.
“Some of my goals are to stay undefeated and keep fighting every match,” Beatty said. I try to win matches by more than one or two points. I really try to win my matches by as many points as possible. My goal is to go undefeated and to be a state champion.
“I just have to do a little bit more work and keep improving on my technique and get some more conditioning in. Just have to keep grinding.”
In other matches, the Trojans’ lightweights continue to set the tone as Mount Union set up a murder’s row of sorts, as Mason Beatty (106), AJ Chilcote (120) and Vance Hower (126) all picked up bonus-point victories.
“They have been all year,” Wertz said. “All three matches so far they have really done that. We just need to get some of the other guys to follow up on that. They’ve had some tough opponents, but we need to learn and try to win those close matches. We thought we had the matchups that we wanted, but we just fell a little bit short.”
The Trojans earned some hard-fought decisions from Bryce Beatty (120) and Jase Ripple (152), while Trevor Skopic (145) and Deegan Rittenhouse (172) fought hard despite moving up a weight class, although both fell to their opponents. A tough break for Haiden Inch at heavyweight led to him getting pinned by Matt Watkins in the final second of the first as bonus points began to add up.
“Bonus points are always key in duals and we talked about it even before the match,” Wertz said. “Vance was a point away from a major and Trevor got taken down late to give them a major. Things like that really make a difference in the dual but that’s not what lost us the dual. We had the matchups we wanted, just came up a little bit short and didn’t get it done tonight.”
The Trojans will continue their gauntlet of sorts, as the Mount Union wrestling team packed its entire schedule into a two-week period in order to make sure that it would have time on the back end of its schedule so a quarantine period would not keep its wrestlers out of the postseason.
Today’s match against Juniata Valley will be the team’s third match in as many days.
“I feel like that it’s something that is really going to prepare for the postseason because we are going to get a bunch of matches in a row while some of these other teams aren’t,” Wertz said. “We’re going to get that mat time under our belt and hopefully have that advantage. It’s a gauntlet and we knew that going in and we scheduled it that way. I think the results of it down the road will outweigh what we are going through now.”
Tussey Mountain Hs (TMH) 31.0 Mount Union Area Hs (MUAH) 27.0
285: Matt Watkins (TMH) over Haiden Inch (MUAH) (Fall 1:59) 106: Mason Beatty (MUAH) over Dalton Baker (TMH) (Fall 1:34) 113: AJ Chilcote (MUAH) over Bryce Heath (TMH) (Fall 4:16) 120: Bryce Beatty (MUAH) over Trevor Husick (TMH) (Dec 7-4) 126: Vance Hower (MUAH) over Luke Brumbaugh (TMH) (Dec 7-0) 132: Double Forfeit 138: Hunter Horton (TMH) over (MUAH) (For.) 145: Chad Weist (TMH) over Trevor Skopic (MUAH) (MD 12-4) 152: Jase Ripple (MUAH) over Kenneth sheeder (TMH) (Dec 4-2) 160: Nick Brumbaugh (TMH) over (MUAH) (For.) 172: Bryan Rankin (TMH) over Deegan Rittenhouse (MUAH) (Dec 5-3) 189: Dominic Sieberling (TMH) over (MUAH) (For.) 215: Xavier Peck (MUAH) over (TMH) (For.)