District 2 Wrestling: Warriors split; Balavage sets school record

Staff Reports
Wyoming Area’s Corey Mruk, bottom, tries to fend off Montrose’s Cole Aukema in the 170-pound consolation bout at the District 2 Class 2A wrestling duals at Lake-Lehman High School Wednesday night. - Bill Tarutis | For Sunday Dispatch
Wyoming Area’s Jaryn Polit-Moran, back, grapples Montrose’s Bryan Ryan in the 182-pound consolation bout at the District 2 Class 2A wrestling duals. - Bill Tarutis | For Sunday Dispatch

Wyoming Area split two close matches Wednesday night when the District 2 Class 2A Dual Meet Wrestling Championships began at Lake-Lehman.

Both the Warriors and Scranton Prep, which was wrestling at Western Wayne, went 1-1 to reach Saturday’s consolation rounds at Pittston Area. Those rounds, scheduled to be held prior to the championship matches in each class, will determine the third- through sixth-place finishers in the tournament.

The Wyoming Area/Scranton Prep winner and Nanticoke/Lake-Lehman winner were set to meet for third place.

Wyoming Area won six of the 11 contested bouts against defending district champion Honesdale, but was hurt by three forfeits in the 44-27 first-round loss. The Warriors edged Montrose, 39-38, in the first round of consolations.

“We were just looking for individual matchups to get our kids ready for the biggest tournament of the season, individual districts,” Wyoming Area coach Jason Prokopchak told the Times Leader. “My kids had a great time. They wrestled free and three represented themselves very well, and the Wyoming Valley Conference as well.”

Ivan Balavage from Scranton Prep won twice with a forfeit and a pin. The junior 195-pounder from Avoca passed older brother, Thor Balavage, to become the school’s all-time leader in career wins with 120.

Scranton Prep opened with a 57-20 win over Nanticoke before losing to Lackawanna League Division 2 champion Western Wayne, 45-26, in the semifinals.

Wyoming Area 39

Montrose 38

Damon Barhight’s pin at 285 put Wyoming Area ahead and, with two forfeits to come, essentially clinched the semifinal victory and the chance to continue into Saturday.

Charlie Banashefski (145) and Justin Joseph (195) also won by pin. Ron Wrobleski won a decision at 138.

Honesdale 44

Wyoming Area 27

Eventual finalist Honesdale won the final three bouts to break away from the 27-27 tie created when Damon Barhight won by pin at 285.

Robin Wrobleski (138) and Corey Mruk (170) also won by pins for the Warriors. Charlie Banashefski (145), Justin Joseph (182) and Jaryn Polit-Moran (195) won close decisions by a total of seven points.

Wyoming Area’s Corey Mruk, bottom, tries to fend off Montrose’s Cole Aukema in the 170-pound consolation bout at the District 2 Class 2A wrestling duals at Lake-Lehman High School Wednesday night.
https://www.psdispatch.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/web1_TTL020118D2-2AWrestlingDuals_5.jpgWyoming Area’s Corey Mruk, bottom, tries to fend off Montrose’s Cole Aukema in the 170-pound consolation bout at the District 2 Class 2A wrestling duals at Lake-Lehman High School Wednesday night. Bill Tarutis | For Sunday Dispatch

Wyoming Area’s Jaryn Polit-Moran, back, grapples Montrose’s Bryan Ryan in the 182-pound consolation bout at the District 2 Class 2A wrestling duals.
https://www.psdispatch.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/web1_TTL020118D2-2AWrestlingDuals_6.jpgWyoming Area’s Jaryn Polit-Moran, back, grapples Montrose’s Bryan Ryan in the 182-pound consolation bout at the District 2 Class 2A wrestling duals. Bill Tarutis | For Sunday Dispatch

Staff Reports

Reach the Sunday Dispatch newsroom at 570-655-1418 or by email at sd@psdispatch.com.

Reach the Sunday Dispatch newsroom at 570-655-1418 or by email at sd@psdispatch.com.