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Middletown gets better of Falcons on the mats

Posted 1/8/20

The Blue Raiders hosted Lower Dauphin on Thursday in what would turn out to be an exciting whirlwind of a match and a 45-36 win for Middletown.

Susquehanna Township was scheduled to visit Jan. 7, …

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Middletown gets better of Falcons on the mats

Posted

The Blue Raiders hosted Lower Dauphin on Thursday in what would turn out to be an exciting whirlwind of a match and a 45-36 win for Middletown.

Susquehanna Township was scheduled to visit Jan. 7, and Milton Hershey at 7 p.m. Thursday. The Blue Raiders will travel to Annville-Cleona for the Dutchman Duals on Saturday.

Against Lower Dauphin, the quick match took just more than 30 minutes.  

The event featured some star power on both sides of the mat. The LD squad is anchored by Clay Ulrey at 160 pounds and TT Elhajj at 138 pounds.

Ulrey has already amassed 123 career wins. He is a three-time state qualifier and placed fifth in the state in 2018 and second in 2019. Elhajj has earned 107 career wins. He is also a three-time state qualifier and placed eighth in 2019.

The Blue Raider squad features Luke Fegley at 132 pounds and Joey Spear at 145 pounds. Fegley is a two-time state qualifier with 110 career wins. Spear is a southeast regional qualifier with 80 career wins.

While this match featured some big names, it was the less experienced wrestlers who stepped up and made the difference in the match for the Blue Raiders.

Wrestling started at 170 pounds, and senior Case Woodley had his best performance of the season for the Raiders.

He overpowered Domenic DeFrank in a 9-4 decision in what would turn out to be the only match to go the full three periods.

LD’s Ben Snyder was too much for Damion Williams at 182 pounds and gave the Falcons a 6-3 lead. Middletown’s Arthur Dash continues to look impressive at 195 pounds.

Dash rolled through a Dylan Goddard headlock and secured a pin for the Blue Raiders in 1 minute, 12 seconds.

Middletown junior Matt Mitchell was awarded a forfeit at 220 pounds extending the Raider lead to 15-6. Middletown senior Quincy Reinnagel continued his outstanding season with another pin at 285 pounds, bringing his season record to 13-3. 

The Falcons hoped to gain some momentum entering the light weights. LD’s Jason Tierney got the ball rolling with a 28-second pin over Middletown freshman Sam Miller at 106 pounds.

Middletown senior and team captain Zach Malay (113 pounds) put an immediate stop to the LD momentum. Malay threw Thomas Myers on his back to earn the fall in a lightning fast 11-second match.

Middletown sophomore Alexander Hatt followed Malay’s lead and earned his first career win with a pin in 2 minutes, 12 seconds vs. Ayden Minnich. The momentous win at 120 pounds would end up being the key to the Raider victory.

LD picked up another 6 team points earning a win by forfeit at 126 pounds, bringing the team score to 33-18 in favor of the Blue Raiders.

The stars on both sides of the mat traded blows in the final five bouts, but the Raider lead was already secure. Fegley made sure of that with a first-period pin over Alec Merry at 132 pounds extending the Raider lead to 39-18.

Elhajj was too much for Middletown’s Evan Smallwood and earned the pin at 138 pounds.

The 145-pound bout began with a little controversy as LD’s Sean Donnelly ran out on the mat only to be pulled back by the LD coaching staff, who chose to award a forfeit to Middletown’s Joey Spear. Donnelly did return to the mat to defeat Middletown freshman Isaac Lupp at 152 pounds.

Middletown sophomore Vinny Corradi made a respectable showing in his matchup against Ulrey in the final bout of the evening, but would ultimately surrender the pin.