Friday, January 18, 2019

Wrestling: Maczko sparks 'Liners' win over 'Cats

Phillipsburg's wrestling team keeps finding ways to grind out wins in tight matches.

Sophomore Logan Maczko came up big with an upset-win at 113 pounds to spark the Stateliners to a 30-27 win over High Point on Friday night in an independent clash at High Point Regional High School.

P'burg (10-0), ranked No. 8 in the New Jersey Writers Top 20, also got a key decision from freshman David Pierson at 170, as coach Dave Post's team prevailed in its third close match this week -- after wins over No. 15 Hanover Park (37-31 on Tuesday) and No. 13 North Hunterdon (30-24).

Maczko spun behind junior Devon Liebl for a decisive takedown with six seconds left for a 3-2 victory -- giving P'burg a 24-15 lead with four bouts to go and High Point favored in three. Liebl, who led, 2-0, after a reversal in the third period, handed Maczko a 3-1 loss in last year's Hunterdon-Warren-Sussex Tournament.

P'burg is now 18-1 all-time against High Point since 1989.
No. 9 High Point (5-1) got a technical fall win at 120, but  a major at 132 and Josh Gervey's 8-5 win in the final bout at 138 weren't enough. Coach John Gardner gave forfeit wins to P'burg state medal winners Travis Jones (126) and Cody Harrison (152), and a pin by Gervey would have been moot as P'burg had criteria in the event of a tie (most six-pointers, 3-1).

The 'Cats, who finished with a 20-9 advantage in takedowns, appeared to be in good shape following Andrew Lewis' 3-1 win in sudden-victory overtime at 285, as he converted a takedown at the buzzer, followed by an impressive 10-3 decision by Clayton Utter in a bout between two solid freshmen at 106. But 113 proved to be the swing bout.

High Point made its move early by running junior Billy Talmadge up to 145, where he scored a 12-8 decision over Kyle Tino in a matchup between state qualifiers. Talmadge (18-3) was working on a major, but Tino was awarded a point for locked hands with 51 seconds left in the third periods and he converted a takedown with six seconds to go.

Pierson converted a single-leg attempt with two seconds left in sudden-victory OT for a crucial 4-2 win over PJ Soldano after two traded reversals in regulation. Senior Austin Roth followed with a pin at 182 to give P'burg a 15-9 lead through five bouts. Winning the flip enabled the Stateliners to get that matchup, rather than risk a split at 182 and 195. Junior Jacob Wicks added a 9-2 win over Sean Van Wingerden to make it 18-9.

This match figured to be won in the upper weights and P'burg won four of five from 170 through 285, as sophomore Gage Horvath held on for a 3-2 win over Justin Klass at 220.

P'burg, now 18-1 overall and 6-0 in road matches against High Point, gets a rare Saturday off before returning to action on Wednesday with a chance to clinch the Skyland Conference Raritan Division title at Ridge -- the program's 22nd championship since joining the conference for the 1995-96 season. Hunterdon Central won the other two division crowns in 2009-10 and 2017-18.

High Point will have to bounce back in a hurry as the 'Cats travel to Toms River North on Saturday for a quad that includes Delsea and South Plainfield. A match against the Tigers, which dropped a tough one against Howell on Thursday, could be a potential preview of this season's Group 2 final.


145 -- Jr. Billy Talmadge (18-3), HP, d. Sr. Kyle Tino (17-8), 12-8.
152 -- Sr. Cody Harrison (19-1), P, forfeit.
160 -- Fr. Brian Soldano (19-2), HP, p. Sr. TJ Abode (14-9), 2:42.
170 -- Fr. David Pierson (10-10), P, d. Jr. PJ Soldano (9-9), 4-2 SV.
182 -- Sr. Austin Roth (16-5), P, p. Sr. Jonathan Morris (9-8), 2:28.
195 -- Jr. Jacob Wicks (14-8), P, d. So. Sean Van Wingerden (1-9), 9-2.
220 -- So. Gage Horvath (11-12), P, d. So. Justin Klass (3-4), 3-2.
285 -- Sr. Andrew Lewis (7-10), HP, d. Jr. Cody Cruts (7-12), 3-1 SV.
106 -- Fr. Clayton Utter (16-4), HP, d. Fr. James Day (18-7), 10-3.
113 -- So. Logan Maczko (17-7), P, d. Jr. Devon Liebl (14-7), 3-2.
120 -- Sr. Devin Flannery (15-5), HP, tf. Fr. Joey Innamorato (6-12), 15-0, 4:41.
126 -- Sr. Travis Jones (19-3), P, forfeit.
132 -- Sr. Brandon LaRue (10-1), HP, md. Sr. Bryce Parenti (17-9), 11-2.
138 -- So. Josh Gervey (13-3), HP, d. Sr. Luke Hardin (7-11), 8-5.
Records -- Phillipsburg 10-0; High Point 5-1.
Officials -- Gary Kessel and Joe Rossetti.

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