Eight Centre County wrestlers on Sunday learned their first-round matchups for the PIAA Wrestling Championships. The three-day tournament begins Thursday at the Giant Center in Hershey.
Six local grapplers will compete in Class AAA and two more in Class AA. The finals will be held Saturday night.
Bald Eagle Area’s Jake Taylor, Aaron Varner and Nate Sharkey are all headed to Hershey along with Bellefonte’s Trevor Corl and Nick Shawley and Philipsburg-Osceola’s John Prentice in Class AAA. Penns Valley’s Corey Hazel and Mike Rogers will compete in the Class AA tournament.
The half-dozen entrants in Class AAA have the following matchups:
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At 120 pounds, Corl faces Nazareth’s Tyler Tarsi.
Bellefonte 170-pounder Shawley, who was fourth at last year’s state tournament, takes on Noah Wilps, from Chartiers Valley.
Also at 170 pounds, Prentice draws regional winner Dominic Rigous, from Central Bucks South.
At 182 pounds, Taylor, who captured a regional title Saturday, faces Cedar Cliff’s Josh Colello. Taylor will be looking to improve on a third-place finish last season.
Varner, at 195 pounds where he finished sixth in 2012, draws Kiski Area’s Matt McCutcheon, who won a state title last year at 182 pounds.
BEA 220-pounder Sharkey, who also earned a regional title over the weekend, takes on Council Rock North’s Tyler Callender.
In Class AA, Penns Valley will send Hazel to face Benton’s Jeric Kasunic at 160 pounds while Mike Rogers takes on regional champion Adam Mackie, from Brandywine Heights, at 182 pounds.