Steubenville takes it to Beaver Local

STEUBENVILLE — The Steubenville wrestling team went on a five-match winning streak to turn a close match against Beaver Local into a big victory.

Leading just 13-12 after six matches, Big Red won six of the next seven matches, including five straight weight classes en route to a 44-19 victory on Senior Night Wednesday at the Crimson Center.

“We wrestled a couple of duals at home earlier in the season and we were flat,” Steubenville coach Mike Blackburn said. “This is the best we have wrestled in a dual in a long time.”

Steubenville improves to 31-3 on the season.

The match started with the 195-pound match, and it ended with the 182-pound match.

“We have got some things we need to work on,” Beaver Local coach Jordan Williams said. “We gave up too many bonus points. There were some positives. We competed hard. Now, we just have to get ready for the postseason.”

Big Red tallied victories in nine of the 14 weight classes, winning five matches by pin, three matches by major decision and one match by decision.

Individually for Big Red, Zane Minella (126 pounds), Anthony Rice (138), Jason Hubbard (145), David Tuttle (170) and Tyler Ely (285) won by pin. Also for the hosts, Peyton Blasko (113) Nick Scott (152) and Hezekiah Scurry (195) won by major decision. Finally for the victors, Jamal Petteway (160) won by decision.

“They are solid at most every weight,” Williams said. “They are a good team. We really competed against them.”

Beaver Local collected victories in five weight classes, winning three matches by decision, one match by major decision and one match by forfeit.

Individually for Beaver Local, Skyler Lasure (120), Chad Mays (182) and Garrett Givens (220) all won by decision, Quinton Bookman (132) won by major decision, and Cole McComas (106) won by forfeit.

“Beaver was third in the OVAC, and we were second,” Blackburn said. “There were some key matchups. They had one starter out with illness, and we also had one starter out. We it was going to be like a boxing a match. It was going to go back-and-forth.”

Steubenville never trailed in the match.

“Overall, the team wrestled well,” Blackburn said. “We moved some guys around due to our illness. We matched up well. We wrestled tough.”

The two teams traded victories early on in the match.

Big Red opened the night with a victory as Scurry defeated Andrew Solansky by major decision, 14-6, to give the boys in black an early 4-0 lead. Beaver Local got on the scoreboard in the next match as Givens defeated Drone Moore by decision, 4-3, to make the overall score 4-3.

The winners increased their advantage to 10-3 as Ely pinned Zach Thomas in 4:53. The Beavers got six points back in the match as McComas won via forfeit to make the score 10-9.

After the victory by McComas, it was Steubenville’s turn again, and Blasko came through with an 8-2 victory over Dominic Perozzi making the score 13-9. Beaver Local had a chance to tie or take the lead for the first time in the match as the next match got underway, and even though Lasure came away with a victory the Beavers still trailed 13-12. Lasure defeated Bill Murray, 2-1, in a hard-fought match.

Big Red gained a little bit of control in the match as Minella pinned Chris Yanni in 4:36 to give his team a 19-12 lead. Bookman pulled Beaver Local back within 19-16 after defeating Michael Gray, 9-1, but the Beavers were unable to turn the tide in the match.

After Gray’s loss, Big Red won the next five weight classes — three by pin, one by major decision and one by decision — to take a 38-16 lead in the match.

Rice got things rolling for Big Red by pinning Noah Smith in 1:17, and Hubbard followed up Rice’s pin with one of his own. Hubbard pinned Jared Wright in 2:47 to increase Big Red’s advantage to 31-16.

After back-to-back pins, Scott defeated Christian Lerussi, 11-0, to keep the momentum going. Next, Petteway defeated Josh Spellman, 7-5, in overtime for Big Red’s fourth straight victory. Finally, Tuttle pinned Daniel Wirth in 2:17 to increase Big Red’s advantage to 28 points at 44-16.

“We definitely like how we ended the season,” Blackburn said. “The kids were focused. They wrestled tough. We want to get healthy injury wise and health wise. Now, we have a week-and-a-half off to get ready for the postseason. We like how we have been wrestling.”

In the final match of the night, Mays defeated Billy Snyder, 7-5.

“We are in good position to make a good run at the end of the season,” Williams said. “We want to get healthy. We are competing hard in the room. We are in a good position. We are working hard. We are in a good position when it matters the most.”

Beaver Local will wrestle at Minerva at 6 p.m. Saturday.

“We have had a pretty good year,” Williams said. “We lost seven seniors last year. We only have one senior this year. We have a young team. We battle. We compete. We want to get better every day. We want to get every kids greatness out of him.”

Steubenville is off until it competes in the Division II sectional tournament at Licking Valley Feb. 25.

“We always plan to take time off before the postseason to recover and to get healthy,” Blackburn said. “It is a lot more individual now. We are going to be working on the little things.”

Big Red is one of four teams from the eastern district that will be competing at a central district sectional this year.

“We knew had good kids this year,” Blackburn said. “We knew we had some young kids. When you have a season with a record of 31-3, that is a pretty good season.”

As a result of wrestling in a central district sectional, Big Red will see a new crop of wrestlers to compete against.

“There is definitely going to be some tough wrestlers out there,” Blackburn said. “There are going to be guys we have not seen before, but we travel and we go to some major tournaments to prepare us for things like this. There are going to be some different wrestlers, but we are just going to wrestle how we wrestle.”

Big Red honored its senior wrestlers before the start of the varsity match.

“It was a great way to end the season,” Blackburn said. “It is tough when you have to wrestle an opponent like Beaver Local on Senior Night. They came and wrestled tough. Even our guys who lost fought until the end.”

Steubenville 44, Beaver Local 19

195: Scurry (S) major dec. Solansky, 14-6.

220: Givens (BL) dec. Moore, 4-3.

285: Ely (S) pin Thomas, 4:53.

106: McComas (BL) won by forfeit.

112: Blasko (S) dec. Perozzi, 8-2.

120: Lasure (BL) dec. Murray, 2-1.

126: Minella (S) pin Yanni, 4:36.

132: Bookman (BL) major dec. Gray, 9-1.

138: Rice (S) pin N. Smith, 1:17.

145: Hubbard (S) pin Wright, 2:47.

152: Scott (S) major dec. Lerussi, 11-0.

160: Petteway (S) dec. Spellman, 7-5 OT.

170: Tuttle (S) pin Wirth, 2:17.

182: Mays (BL) dec. Snyder, 7-5.

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