Picking up where they left off as the 2015-16 season closed, Northern Lebanon’s wrestling team announced it was open for business, Friday in the first night of the 19th Mule Classic at Solanco High School.
The Vikings advanced nine to today’s semifinals, scheduled to begin at 11 a.m.
The defending District Three Class AA team champions took a 116.5-89.5 lead over Dallastown as the Wildcats pushed seven to the semis.
Viking veterans led the way with Kyler Anspach (106), Colin Leonard (120), Trevor Leonard (132), Zach Kelly (138), Steve Herb (145), Blaise Bressler (152), Luis Negrerios (160), Luke Funck (182) and Hunter Wallace (220) setting the pace.
Anspach scored a pair of falls, as did Trevor Leonard, Kelly, Herb and Wallace.
With a first-round bye, Funck needed just 23 seconds to pin his way to the semis.
Colin Leonard scored a tech fall and a fall. Bressler had a fall and a major decision.
After securing a fall in his first match, Negrerios posted a takedown with three seconds left in overtime to edge Pequea Valley’s Dan Wanner, 3-1.
Of the other six L-L teams competing, the host Golden Mules totaled the most semifinalists with four.
Sheldon Pfeiffer had a pair of pins at 120, as did Averex Grant at 285. Grayson Charles, a returning runner-up, posted a tech fall, then pinned at 138. After a first-round bye, Josh Weder pinned at 195.
Executing a precise double leg shot, Penn Manor’s Jordan Harsh advanced to the semis at 120 with a 6-4 overtime victory. He pinned his way into the quarterfinals.
The Comets’ Jonah Barley backed a first-round fall with a technical fall at 170.
Also receiving a first-round bye, Dante Jones at 182, scored a neutral fall — stacking Delone’s Brendan Quinn in a flurry after opening the second period with an escape.
Pequea Valley, Lampeter-Strasburg and Donegal each moved two into the semifinals.
The Braves Tanner Ball (126) and Gabe Miller (132) — both returning runners-up — advanced, Miller with two pins, Ball with a fall and major decision.
L-S’s Jack Eckman (195) and Owen Hess (285) each had byes into the quarters, then battled their way to Saturday, Eckman by a 2-0 score, Hess, 3-2.
Donegal’s Keegan McCord pinned his way to the semis at 220 with two falls.
After a fall in the prelims, Austin Burkholder edged the Comets’ Nick Fafel, 4-2, the winning points coming on a second-period reversal as the competitors split takedowns.
Barley, who placed sixth in the state tournament, finds himself in an extremely competitive 170-pound class with defending champion David Cox of Oxford his semifinal foe and returning runner-up Dalton Group of Susquenita in the opposite bracket.
Cox is one of three returning champions in the field, joining Upper Perk’s Jared Kuhns (106), now at 113, and Coatesville’s returning 152-pound champion Chase Stephens, now at 160.