Red Lion s Dylan Nguyen trailed Garden Spot s Kyle Coblentz, 4-0, after a first-period cradle. But the Lion senior used his big move to pin Coblentz with
Red Lion s Dylan Nguyen trailed Garden Spot s Kyle Coblentz, 4-0, after a first-period cradle. But the Lion senior used his big move to pin Coblentz with 10 seconds left in the second period and earn a gold medal in the 119-pound class. (For the Daily Record/Sunday News - Mike Zortman)
HERSHEY -- All three YAIAA wrestlers who walked out of Saturday's District 3 Class AAA Wrestling Championships with gold medals employed a strategy that's exciting for fans but not so much for them.

The come-from-behind win.

New Oxford's Jordan Conaway (103), Red Lion's Dylan Nguyen (119), and South Western's Cameron Throckmorton (125) each fell behind in their championship match only to bounce back to claim crowns.

Those three champions led a solid contingent of seven league finalists, a total second only to the Mid-Penn Conference's 13 finalists, all of which earned an automatic spot in the PIAA Wrestling Championships in two weeks at Giant Center.

Silver medals went to Central York's Matt Newman (140), West York's Billy Randt (145), Spring Grove's Logen Wisner (160) and Dallastown's Phil Sprenkle (189).

Kennard-Dale Victor Bracey (130), Spring Grove's Dylan Wisner (152) and Susquehannock's Zach Freet (285) each captured consolation finals to earn state tournament berths.

Conaway and Nguyen both faced four-point deficits but erased them in vastly different manners.

Down 6-2 to Hempfield's Austin Miller, Conaway chipped away with a couple of escapes and then hit a takedown to tie it at six apiece with nine seconds left in the regulation.

In the 30-second rideout periods, Miller almost got a reversal at the buzzer but was only awarded an escape to take a 7-6 lead.


Conaway (38-1) responded with an escape of his own and then got the winning points in the 9-7 win on a takedown with just two seconds left in the period.

"I knew I just had to keep working back into (the match). I had dug myself a hole," said Conaway, the two-time district finalist, whose lone loss for the season is to Miller.

Meanwhile, Nguyen fell behind 4-0 to Garden Spot's Kyle Coblentz on a first-period cradle. But the Lion senior pulled out his big move, one without an official name but could be called the Nguyen Pin after he hit the Spartan senior with it and pinned him with 10 seconds left in the second period.

"I can't really explain (the move)," said Nguyen (34-5). "I wrap my arm around his head and kind of use my body to put him to the mat. ... I know no one is getting out of it."

In the next match, Throckmorton gave up a takedown to Penn Manor's Bobby Rehm with just 10 seconds left in the second period to fall behind 4-2.

The Mustang junior, who won a district title as a freshman, cut the lead to one and then -- after fending off several outstanding shots from the Comet junior -- hit one of his own with 26 ticks left in the bout to grab a 5-4 lead.

Throckmorton (30-2) then rode Coblentz out for the remaining time to earn the win, his second vs. Rehm this season so he knew what to expect.

"He's big and strong. He keeps coming at you. ... When he took the lead, I started getting worried," said Throckmorton, the South Western junior who is making his third trip to states.

In keeping with the theme, Newman (20-2) also fell behind against Wilson's Nick Dragonette, trailing 3-1 heading into the third period. But the 140-pounder couldn't pull it out in the end.

An escape and a takedown with 1:17 remaining gave the Panther junior a 4-3 lead for about 16 seconds until the Bulldog senior tied it with an escape of his own.

Dragonette then got in too deep for Newman to defend and got the winning takedown with 35 seconds left in the bout.

Falling behind was a shock to his system, but Newman was still pleased with his weekend.

"I didn't know what he did from the neutral position so the dump caught me off-guard. I kinda lost my focus," said Newman, a first-time district participant, now 20-2. "I feel like I've accomplished a lot this weekend."

Randt, Wisner, and Sprenkle each faced uphill battles against a trio of the state's best.

Randt was overwhelmed by Middletown's Bo Candelaria in a 4:50 technical fall, while Wisner lost the closest bout of the weekend to two-time state champion Marshall Peppelman of Central Dauphin, a 9-0 major decision.

Sprenkle actually took a 4-3 lead against Warwick's unbeaten Antonio Giorgio, a four-time state qualifier. The Wildcat junior chose bottom but Giorgio made him pay with a three-point nearfall which keyed a 9-4 decision for the Warrior senior.

* * *

States on the line: In a rematch of last weekend's 130-pound Section V championship, Bracey was in total control against Dover's Scott Page in their consolation final.

The Ram senior got a takedown at the first-period buzzer and never looked back in defeating the Eagle junior 7-1 to earn his ticket to the Giant Center.

Page was one of six YAIAA competitors that placed fourth, falling just short of the coveted top-three finish that extends the season to the maximum.

New Oxford's Andrew Brehm (112), Dallastown's Tyler Hoover (171), Red Lion's Dave Quackenbos (215) and the Spring Grove duo of Jake Verheyen (119) and Neal Grudi (189) all lost in the consolation finals.