Meadville Tribune

Sports

March 9, 2014

Breese closes career with second straight title

HERSHEY — Sam Breese now knows how it feels to be perfect.

Breese finished with an undefeated season record of 35-0, with win No. 35 being the sweetest one of all.

The Lakeview senior stared into the face of the pressure that comes with defending a title, and made the Giant Center in Hershey feel like home. Undeniable talent and an incredible determination are the hallmarks of Breese’s approach to wrestling, and for the second straight year, he can call himself a champion.

Breese successfully defended his heavyweight title Saturday, capping off an incredible wrestling career in the most appropriate way.

“A bunch of weight has been lifted off my shoulders,” Breese said as his gold medal hung around his neck. “The goal of my whole wrestling career has been to have an undefeated season, and it just feels so good to accomplish that.”

Breese defeated Pen Argyl’s Brady Mutton in the championship bout in a 3-2 decision in a tight match full of excitement and power.

After a scoreless first period, Mutton chose down to start the second and promptly reversed Breese to take a surprising 2-0 lead.

Though the crowd at the Giant Center thought they might witness an upset, anyone who knows Breese or has seen him wrestle knew there was no need to panic. Most importantly, Breese knew that too.

Moments after the reversal, Breese flipped the script and reversed Mutton to even the bout at 2-2.

Breese chose the down position to start the third, and escaped midway through the period. From there, the senior avoided Mutton’s attack, and threw his hands in the air in celebration as the buzzer sounded on his phenomenal career.

“I knew I had to perform and work harder this year,” Breese said. “I felt way more pressure this year, and I was way more nervous this year trying to repeat.”

As for going undefeated and winning a second title in as many years, Breese will have plenty of time to enjoy it.

“It hasn’t sunk in yet,” Breese said. “It will hit me on the ride home.”

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