On a night when six wrestlers repeated as PIAA Class AAA champions, Chance Marsteller and Thomas Haines stole the show.
Marsteller, of Kennard-Dale, and Haines, of Solanco, became the 11th and 12th four-time gold-medal winners in Pennsylvania history. Marsteller (166-0) also is the first four-time champion to complete his career without a loss since Cary Kolat (1989-92) and the fourth overall.
Marsteller defeated Kyle Coniker of Pittsburgh Central Catholic 14-2 and proceeded to raise both arms and extend four fingers to a standing ovation.
“I teared up a little bit,” Marsteller said. “Every other state title was just another match, just another day. This was one more memorable because it’s a different feat and it’s my last high school match ever. It was really something else to take in this time.”
Haines handled Pat Finn of Pottsgrove 6-1 and walked off to a similar standing ovation with arms raised and flashing a big smile.
“It’s just amazing. There’s nothing like it,” Haines said. “Everybody in the entire stadium standing up clapping for me. There’s no words to describe it.”
The Marsteller-Haines duo even upstaged Canon McMillan’s Dalton Macri, who knocked off Joe Galasso of Father Judge 7-2 in a battle of defending champions at 145, and Central Dauphin’s Garrett Peppelman, who won his second title at 160 with a 17-7 decision over Ian Shannon of Carlisle.
Devin Brown (37-0) of team champion Franklin Regional (119 points) was the first to repeat. Brown, who won his first title last year at Saegertown High School, trimmed Dan Moran of Nazareth 7-6 at 106 pounds.
Spencer Lee followed as Franklin Regional’s second straight champion. Lee ran his freshman season record to 49-0 with a major decision (15-5) over Joe Wheeling of General McLane.
Wheeling was the only D-10 grappler to work his way into the Class AAA finals. The senior reached the championship bout thanks to a 1-0 decision in the semifinals over Owen J. Roberts’ Derek Gulotta.
After a scoreless first period, Wheeling escaped for the lone point of the match in the second. Gulotta chose neutral to begin the third period, where Wheeling held off a late takedown attempt for the victory.
Lee takes fifth
Titusville’s Ehrin Lee suffered back to back losses on Saturday, but the Rocket senior rebounded to win the final match of his high school career.
Lee didn’t even have to take the mat to win his fifth-place match over Greater Latrobe’s Dominic Scalise. Scalise was forced to default his previous match in 4:15 due to injury and was unable to answer the bell against Lee. The Rocket was awarded a forfeit victory.
Lee began his final day of wrestling with a tight 1-0 loss to Carlisle’s Ian Shannon in the championship semifinal round.
The match was still scoreless after two periods, after Lee was unable to escape during the second. In the third frame, Shannon picked up the lone point of the bout with an escape, and held off Lee the rest of the way.
Lee returned to the mat in fourth round of the consolation bracket, where he dropped the match to Abington Heights’ Matthew Carr 2-1.
The winning point came after Lee was penalized for his second stalling warning of the match, breaking a 1-1 tie in the third period.
Other D-10 grapplers to reach the medal stand were Tyree Spearman (8th, 182) and Scot Augustine (5th, 285) of McDowell; Cathedral Prep’s Jake Gromacki (5th, 120); and Warren’s D.J. Fehlman (6th, 126).