Cory’s win over Nixon helps Montoursville wrestling stay unbeaten

Had Saturday been a three-match day like was originally scheduled, Montoursville coach Matt Yonkin isn’t sure he would have chased Isaac Cory up a weight class to wrestle Muncy’s Ty Nixon.

But when the schedule changed Friday afternoon and a quad meet with state-ranked Southern Columbia, Hamburg and Muncy turned into just a morning dual with the Indians, it only made sense to chase the match. It turned out to be a positive move for Cory.

The returning state placewinner stayed in good position when on his feet and utilized a second-period escape for a one-point win against the former state qualifier Nixon. The 160-pound clash between state-ranked wrestlers was the only of 13 bouts Saturday to not end in bonus points, but it was easily the best match of the day as ninth-ranked Montoursville remained unbeaten with a 49-23 win.

The originally scheduled quad meet at Southern Columbia was canceled Friday after the maximum number of COVID-19 cases was reached at Southern Columbia and the school was shut down for a week. Hamburg was invited to come to Muncy on Saturday to participate in a tri-meet with Muncy and Montoursville, but declined the invitation.

“Beggars can’t be choosers. We have to take whatever matches we can get,” Yonkin said. “We were prepared for a long day of high-quality competition. But if the one competition you have is Muncy, a great program with a quality team, that’s a pretty good competition.”

Montoursville is averaging more than 55 points a match in its four wins to open the season. But getting Cory against Nixon on Saturday had nothing to do with strategy and everything to do with getting Cory a tough matchup after his first three bouts of the season ended with a fall, a forfeit and a technical fall.

Cory took advantage of the opportunity. He constantly maintained good position in neutral, trying to take away the dangerous dump which Nixon likes to get to. It minimized the scoring opportunities for both wrestlers, but Cory was happy with his positioning and his ability to control the bout.

“I knew as soon as he got the chance, he was going to try to hit it. He almost got me one time, even with me being in my best position,” Cory said. “But I knew once I got my tie-ups, I can control the pace. So it was really wrestling from space that I was trying to cut down on.”

Nixon and Cory were scoreless through the first period, and after choosing bottom in the second period, Cory needed just five seconds to take a 1-0 lead. From there, the two spent the next 3:55 on their feet with no points scored.

Late in the second period Nixon got to that dump and dropped to a single-leg. He had Cory’s leg elevated, but Cory was able to fight the grip and get free to avoid the takedown. His one-point escape early in the second period ended up being enough for the win.

“I felt like I was getting to what I wanted. The match was moving my direction and I was putting him where I wanted,” Cory said. “It’s a big win for me. It’s really big to know where I’m at right now.”

“(Cory) was able to control the ties and the hand-fighting. He was able to stay low and engage with underhooks and he kept the action in his control,” Yonkin said. “Nixon’s strength is on his feet and I thought Isaac was able to control the hand fights. It was exciting to see him perform and win.”

Muncy was already in an obvious hole coming into the dual. The Indians’ numbers have fallen off this season because of injuries and others deciding not to come out for the team. But it also also out-gunned in the upper weights, like most teams who face Montoursville.

Ethan Gush’s technical fall at 172 pounds was Muncy’s lone win between 145 and 285 pounds. Top-ranked Cael Crebs earned a fall in 54 seconds. Lane Stutzman needed just 21 seconds for a fall at 215, and No. 2 Dylan Bennett needed only 49 seconds for a fall at 285.

Returning state champion Branden Wentzel build a 12-0 lead before scoring a fall at 113 pounds. By the time Paul McCormick snapped the Warriors’ win streak, Montoursville already had a 45-11 lead.

“It was disappointing that we didn’t get the three matches,” Cory said, “but with how things have been and how the summer was, I’m just excited we can get matches whenever I can wrestle.”

Bryce Vollman got Muncy off to a big start in the second bout of the night when he scored a fall at 138 pounds after Montoursville picked up a forfeit to open the dual. But the win was more than just your average first-period fall for Vollman, a two-time state qualifier.

The senior was a little miffed Friday night when he saw he was ranked just 17th in the state at 138 pounds behind four wrestlers he defeated last year. So as much as Saturday’s dual was about helping his team, it was also about making a statement against 23rd-ranked Broc Lutz.

Vollman recorded the opening takedown, getting to his dump for a 2-0 lead n the first period. And after cutting Lutz loose about 40 seconds later, Vollman hit a filthy headlock and was able to get the fall just two seconds left on the second-period clock.

“I wanted to prove a point that I’m back and I’m not injured now,” Vollmand said. “It was a good statement, btu I have to be ready for the other competitions. I gotta be ready for Tuesday (against Line Mountain) and whatever comes after that.”

#9 Montoursville 49, Muncy 23

132: Hunter Miller, Mt, won by forfeit.

138: #17 Bryce Vollman, Mu, pinned #23 Broc Lutz, 1:58.

145: Kayden Frame, Mt, pinned Elijah Weikle, :38.

152: Josiah Schans, Mt, won by forfeit.

160: #5 Isaac Cory, Mt, dec. #13 Ty Nixon, 1-0.

172: #14 Ethan Gush, Mu, tech. fall Caleb Moser, 15-0, 3:48.

189: #1 Cael Crebs, Mt, pinned Tristen Ditzler, :54.

215: Lane Stutzman, Mt, pinned Braydon Bergey, :21.

285: #2 Dylan Bennett, Mt, pinned Matt McCauley, :49.

106: #1 Branden Wentzel, Mt, pinned Josh Hill, 2:51.

113: Phil McCormick, Mu, pinned Jackson Watkins, :27.

120: Cole Johnson, Mt, maj. dec. Alex Maiorana, 16-6.

126: #5 Scott Johnson, Mu, pinned Lucas Sherwood, :53.

Takedowns: Montoursville 11, Muncy 6.

Official: Fritz Snyder.

Records: Montoursville (4-0, 2-0 HAC-II); Muncy (2-2, 1-0 Mid-Penn).


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