SPRING GROVE — In a span of about five minutes Friday night, Chambersburg senior wrestler Luke Nichter experienced a very definite high and a bittersweet low.
At the District 3 Class 3A Championships at Spring Grove H.S., Nichter was in the process of dominating Penn Manor’s Kole Marley in a 160-pound quarterfinal bout, a match he led 15-1 before eventually pinning Marley in 2:33.
But in the course of his match, he was able to peek at the adjacent mat as his younger brother Tate Nichter battled Tye Weathersby of Central Dauphin at 152. And that did not turn out well.
“I was focusing on my match, but then I looked over and saw Tate get in deep and I put two fingers up (for a takedown),” Luke said. “But then I saw he got taken down and then tilted and I got mad and wanted to get mine over with.”
As soon as he decked Marley, Luke moved over to Tate’s match to root him on. Tate trailed 5-0 after two periods, but made it interesting with an escape, a takedown and a stalling point, but ultimately fell, 6-4, nearly converting on a takedown at the buzzer.
“He just needed to wrestle like he did in the last minute earlier in the match,” Luke said.
What made Luke’s match special was that it was the 150th victory of his stellar career, which ties Tanner Shoap for the most wins in Chambersburg history.
“I knew it would be close, but I got a couple extra matches in the (District 3) team duals and that helped,” said Nichter, who moved into the No. 1 ranking in the state this week. “I thought maybe it wouldn’t be until states.”
He will try to claim a district title Saturday, but it won’t be easy. He’ll be favored over Gettysburg’s Nathan Ridgley in the semifinals, but he’ll likely see Lower Dauphin’s Clayton Ulrey in the final. His win over Ulrey last week switched the pairs’ 1-2 ranking.
Chambersburg had a fabulous preliminary round Friday, going 6-for-6, with four pins and a technical fall. But the Trojans were only 1-5 in the quarterfinals. All six Trojans are still alive for a possible PIAA berth.
“It was like two extremes,” Trojan coach Matt Mentzer said. “We had some tough matchups and we let a couple slip away (in the quarters). When you wrestle kids at your level, the margin for error is smaller and you can’t get away with some things you have before.”
Luke Mentzer (106) won by tech fall, Karl Shindledecker (120), Anthony Colangelo (132) and both Nichters scored pins and Wyatt Hull (220) won a 10-4 decision in the prelims.
In the semifinals, Mentzer seemed to slip on a takedown try and Conestoga Valley’s Trent Ruble turned it into the deciding takedown and won 3-2.
Shindledecker ran into three-time defending district champion Will Betancourt of Manheim Central and lost 5-2. In the second, Shindledecker took Betancourt down for a 2-1 lead, but Betancourt almost immediately reversed and in the third he rode Shindledecker out the entire period, getting two stalling points.
Colangelo got reversed to his back with a petersen and fell behind Canton Dolla of Daniel Boone in an 8-0 loss, and Hull was beaten 6-2 by Dustin Swanson of Garden Spot, giving up two stalling points and then a killer takedown on a counter in the third period.
Tate Nichter was down 1-0 against Weathersby in the second when he got in deep on a takedown shot. But instead of a 2-1 lead, he trailed 3-0 when Weathersby made a very nice counter to score the points. He quickly tilted him to take a 5-0 lead.
Matt Mentzer said, “A couple of times in tight matches we made mental errors that cost us.”
Shippensburg was 3-for-3 in the first round, with Dylan Ramsey (132), Dom Frontino (138) and Sean Hess (285) advancing, with Frontino getting a tech fall and Hess scoring a pin.
In the quarters, Frontino tied his bout with Mason Lewis of Dover early in the second period, then in a wild scramble situation, Frontino earned a takedown and turned Lewis for a pin in 3:24.
“After I got out from bottom, I started moving my feet and controlling the ties,” Frontino said. “I was just trying to come out on top (in that scramble) and he got caught underneath my legs.”
Hess trailed 1-0 against Hunter Bisking of Dallastown after two periods, then had a big third period to win 7-3. He took Bisking down and then slapped a cradle on him to take a 6-1 lead.
Hess said, “I just wrestled my all and tried to have a good mentality. That might be the first time I’ve hit the cradle, but it was just there.”
Ramsey was edged 2-1 by Mason Myers of Central York, with the deciding point being a stalling point in the second period.
Waynesboro had two entries — Kaden Rouzer at 126 and Hayden Reichard at 170. Both lost their first bout, but won in wrestlebacks.
District 3 Class 3A Wrestling
106 — Luke Mentzer (Chbg) tf Braydon Grentzyel (York Suburban), 16-0, 2:58
120 — Karl Shindledecker (Chbg) p Griffin Gonzales (Lebanon), 5:14
126 — Evan Chapman (Northern York) p Kaden Rouzer (Way), 0:47
132 — Dylan Ramsey (Ship) d Tyler Faust (Central Dauphin), 6-0
132 — Anthony Colangelo (Chbg) p Jose Tirado (McCaskey), 3:55
138 — Dom Frontino (Ship) tf Eddie Scheck (Muhlenberg), 18-2, 5:36
152 — Tate Nichter (Chbg) p Jonathan Rathman (Cocalico), 3:21
160 — Luke Nichter (Chbg) p Turk Baum (Cocalico), 0:15
170 — Benjamin Bearinger (Cocalico) d Hayden Reichard (Way), 11-6
220 — Wyatt Hull (Chbg) d Nathan Hawkins (South Western), 10-4
285 — Sean Hess (Ship) p Brock Gingrich (Cocalico), 4:28
106 — Trent Ruble (Conestoga Valley) d Mentzer (Chbg), 3-2
120 — Will Betancourt (Manheim Central) d Shindledecker (Chbg), 5-2
132 — Mason Myers (Central York) d Ramsey (Ship), 2-1
132 — Canton Dolla (Daniel Boone) md Colangelo (Chbg), 8-0
138 — Frontino (Ship) p Mason Lewis (Dover), 3:24
152 — Tye Weathersby (Central Dauphin) d T.Nichter (Chbg), 6-4
160 — L.Nichter (Chbg) p Kole Marley (Penn Manor), 2:33
220 — Dustin Swanson (Garden Spot) d Hull (Chbg), 6-2
285 — Hess (Ship) d Hunter Bisking (Dallastown), 7-3
126 — Rouzer (Way) tf Keaton Fischer (Conestoga Valley), 16-0, 4:21
170 — Reichard (Way) p Gabriel Hayes (Cumberland Valley), 1:17