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Leet leads Montgomery to 3-0 day at MACC Quad

MONTGOMERY – Hunter Leet used to have days where he got home from wrestling practice and he’d have plenty of energy to do other things. That doesn’t happen much anymore for the Montgomery junior.

He saw the benefits of the conditioning work he’s done through the early portion of his season Saturday in three matches at the MACC Quad. Leet went 3-0, winning a pair of brutal six-minute matches before posting a technical fall in Montgomery’s final match of the day. His performance helped Montgomery open the Denny Harer era unbeaten, posting wins over Jersey Shore (44-18), Mifflinburg (55-18) and Central Columbia (57-16). Jersey Shore, Central and Mifflinburg all finished 1-2. Shore lost to Central (36-24) before closing the day with a 42-30 win over Mifflinburg. Mifflinburg got a fall in the final bout from Emmanuel Ulrich to beat Central, 35-34.

Leet is in his third year as a staple of the Montgomery lineup, and he’s always shown flashes of what he could be. As a freshman, he won eight consecutive matches early in the season and eventually qualified for the district tournament. Last year he went .500 but failed to get back to the district tournament.

He opened up Saturday’s quad meet with the best win of his career, beating former regional qualifier Liam Goodrich of Jersey Shore, 9-7. Throughout the bout, Leet showed off the parts of his game which make him so dangerous. He was quick. He was aggressive. He was confident. And when he had to scramble his butt off to keep from giving up the bout-tying reversal in the third period, he did just that.

“I feel stronger. I feel faster. I’ve been training through the whole winter running, so I have a lot more endurance,” Leet said. “I’m confident enough to say in that first match in the past I would have been tired in the second or third period. But I felt fine and I came out of it fine.”

Leet wrestled nearly 17 of a possible 18 minutes Saturday. Still, after the match, he looked as if he were ready to go on one of the trail runs which have helped improve his conditioning. He’s bought into the new style and new culture Harer has brought with him to his alma mater. The rewards of buying into what Harer is selling were shown Saturday.

It was a big step in building confidence in wrestlers like Leet, who are looking to take that next step in their careers. Six Montgomery wrestlers went unbeaten Saturday. Freshman Conner Harer scored a 17-2 technical fall over Central Columbia’s state-ranked Isaac Kester in the final bout of his 3-0 day. Devon Deem pinned Jersey Shore’s state-ranked Gabe Andrus as part of his 3-0 day. Caden Finck had three bonus-point wins in his varsity debut.

Even on a day where he went 1-2, Bradley Leon saved his best performance of the day for his best competition. He scored a fall over two-time district qualifier Dylan Devlin in the Red Raiders’ final bout. There was a reason for Harer to be pleased with just about every spot in the lineup Saturday.

“We’ve been waiting for this for three weeks,” Leet said. “I think we feel great as a team. There’s some of us who are bummed because we didn’t win all our matches, but overall, seeing what our hard work has done is a huge confidence booster.”

“They’re buying in and believing in what we’re doing. The kids are expecting to win now,” said Harer, who was a two-time state placewinner at Montgomery in 1993 and 1994. “We train to win every day. They’re changing the culture and they’ve all bought in. This is a great group of kids.”

Harer isn’t naive enough to think the Red Raiders are a finished product. They’re far from it. But Saturday was a good start. Montgomery gets its first big test Thursday against Benton in a key Mid-Penn match against a Tigers team which has seven state-ranked wrestlers.

But building confidence has been Step 1 for Harer from the time he took the job. Going 3-0 in their own gym was a step forward Saturday.

“I asked them ‘when was the last time you were three and oh?'” Harer said. “When was the last time you beat three bigger schools like that? They’re accepting the challenges we’re giving them and hopefully they keep getting better.”

Jersey Shore coach Crock Herman saw a Bulldogs team which came out flat in the morning opener against Montgomery and steadily improve throughout the day. The Bulldogs weighed in just nine wrestlers Saturday, but it was nine wrestlers Herman feels really good about.

Freshman Brock Weiss went 3-0 in his debut. Returning state qualifier Hayden Packer went 3-0, including bumping up a weight to 215 and getting a fall over Devlin. Andrus responded from an opening-match loss to beat Kester, 3-1.

“We had a lot of good things happen, but we need to bring more intensity to the mat, more focus and more transitions from one more to another,” Herman said. “It’s hard to work on those things when you’re only back for five days and back in competition. But we have a bunch of good kids, we just have to put it all together now.”

Round 1

Montgomery 44, Jersey Shore 18

106: Brock Weiss, JS, pinned Logan Sauer, 1:59.

113: Blake Snyder, M, won by forfeit.

120: Caden Finck, M, won by forfeit.

126: Nevin Beachel, M won by forfeit.

132: Hunter Leet, M, dec. Liam Goodrich, 9-7.

138: Double forfeit.

145: Conner Harer, M, tech. fall Cade Vuocolo, 16-1, 2:50.

152: Devon Deem, M, pinned Gabe Andrus, 3:23.

160: Tyler Bauder, JS, dec. Kaide Drick, 7-5, sv.

172: Colby Springman, M, won by forfeit.

189: Hayden Packer, JS, pinned Ben Marino, 1:43.

215: Dyllian Ross, JS, dec. Bradley Leon, 7-6.

285: Weston Pick, M, won by forfeit.

Mifflinburg 35, Central Columbia 34

106: Double forfeit.

113: Dylan Starr, M, won by forfeit.

120: Brady Struble, M, pinned Marcus Long, 2:37.

126: Gabe Gramly, M, pinned Alex Hosler, 1:37.

132: Colton Chipeleski, CC, maj. dec. Max Murray, 10-2.

138: Troy Bingaman, M, tech. fall Alex Roberts, 18-2, 4:40.

145: Isaac Kester, CC, won by forfeit.

152: Gage Chipeleski, CC, won by forfeit.

160: Greyson Shaud, CC, won by forfeit.

172: Troy Johnson, CC, won by forfeit.

189: Jonathan Melendez, M, won by forfeit.

215: Dylan Devlin, CC, won by forfeit.

285: Emmanuel Ulrich, M, pinned Logan McWilliams, 4:15.

Round 2

Montgomery 55, Mifflinburg 18

113: Blake Snyder, Mon, pinned Dylan Starr, 3:36.

120: Caden Finck, Mon, maj. dec. Brady Struble, 11-0.

126: Gabe Gramly, Mif, pinned Nevin Beachel, :17.

132: Hunter Leet, Mon, dec. Max Murray, 5-2.

138: Troy Bingaman, Mif, won by forfeit.

145: Conner Harer, Mon, won by forfeit.

152: Devon Deem, Mon, won by forfeit.

160: Kaide Drick, Mon, won by forfeit.

172: Colby Springman, Mon, won by forfeit.

189: Ben Marino, Mon, pinned Jonathan Melendez, 1:39.

215: Weston Pick, Mon, won by forfeit.

285: Emmanuel Ulrich, Mif, pinned Bradley Leon, 5:13.

106: Logan Sauer, M, won by forfeit.

Central Columbia 36, Jersey Shore 24

113: Double forfeit.

120: Marcus Long, CC, won by forfeit.

126: Alex Hosler, CC, won by forfeit.

132: Liam Goodrich, JS, dec. Colton Chipeleski, 9-2.

138: Alex Roberts, CC, won by forfeit.

145: Gabe Andrus, JS, dec. Isaac Kester, 3-1.

152: Cade Vuocolo, JS, pinned Gage Chipeleski, 5:58.

160: Troy Johnson, CC, pinned Tyler Bauder, 5:10.

172: Greyson Shaud, CC, pinned Ian Carlin, 3:27.

189: Double forfeit.

215: Hayden Packer, JS, pinned Dylan Devlin, :54.

285: Logan McWilliams, CC, pinned Dyllian Ross, 1:16.

106: Brock Weiss, JS, won by forfeit.

Round 3

Montgomery 57, Central Columbia 16

120: Blake Snyder, M, pinned Marcus Long, 1:18.

126: Caden Finck, M, tech. fall Alex Hosler, 17-2, 4:42.

132: Colton Chipeleski, CC, maj. dec. Nevin Beachel, 17-6.

138: Hunter Leet, M, tech. fall Alex Roberts, 17-2, 4:31.

145: Conner Harer, M, tech. fall Isaac Kester, 17-2, 3:47.

152: Devon Deem, M, pinned Gage Chipeleski, 1:04.

160: Troy Johnson, CC, pinned Kaide Drick, 5:06.

172: Colby Springman, M, pinned Greyson Shaud, 1:38.

189: Ben Marino, M, won by forfeit.

215: Bradley Leon, M, pinned Dylan Devlin, 2:59.

285: Logan McWilliams, CC, pinned Weston Pick, 1:01.

106: Logan Sauer, M, won by forfeit.

113: Oscar Huynh, M, won by forfeit.

Records: Montgomery (3-0); Central Columbia (1-2).

Jersey Shore 42, Mifflinburg 30

120: Brady Struble, M, won by forfeit.

126: Gabe Gramly, M, won by forfeit.

132: Max Murray, M, pinned Liam Goodrich, 1:27.

138: Troy Bingaman, M, won by forfeit.

145: Cade Vuocolo, JS, won by forfeit.

152: Gabe Andrus, JS, won by forfeit.

160: Tyler Bauder, JS, won by forfeit.

172: Ian Carlin, JS, won by forfeit.

189: Hayden Packer, JS, pinned Jonathan Melendez, :51.

215: Dyllian Ross, S, won by forfeit.

285: Emmanuel Ulrich, M, won by forfeit.

106: Double forfeit.

113: Brock Weiss, JS, pinned Dylan Starr, 3:01.

Records: Jersey Shore (1-2); Mifflinburg (1-2).

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