DuBOIS — DuBois entered Saturday as the favorite on paper to win its second straight District 4/9 Class AAA team title, but Shikellamy had other plans as the Braves stunned the Beavers, 37-31, to earn a trip to Hershey.
Shikellamy (12-5) won eight of the 14 bouts in a match that went down to the final weight class. DuBois (15-4) appeared to be in control, leading 27-16 after nine bouts following a forfeit win by Ed Scott at 126.
However, the Braves promptly flipped the momentum in their favor at 132 when Frank Quinones pinned DuBois junior Dalton Woodrow in 1:45.
Woodrow scored a takedown on Quinones 22 seconds in and had the Brave in a world of trouble just past the midway point of the first period. But, Woodrow couldn’t finish off the pin as he led 5-0.
Quinones not only fought his back, but quickly reversed the Beaver to his back late in the period — securing the fall with 15 seconds left to make it 27-22.
The numbers were in DuBois’ favor after that.
Senior Kolby Ho posted a 21-8 major decision against Bryce Burgess at 145, but that proved to be DuBois’ lone win in the final four bouts. The Braves even lost a team point for unsportsmanlike condutch following one of their wins in that stretch.
Shik pulled even at 31-31 when Phalean Wolfe pinned Gauge Gulvas in 1:10 at 152, then Noah Supsic punched the Braves’ ticket to states by decking Austin Fairman in 1:02 in the final bout at 160.
DuBois reached the finals with a dominating 52-21 win against Selinsgrove in the semifinals, while Shikellamy bested Clearfield, 48-25, in the other semi.
“If we wrestle that match over and over again, I think we’re the better team but we weren’t today,” said DuBois coach Luke Bundy. “Shikellamy came out and did what they needed to do and scored the bonus points where they needed too.
“Hats off to them. Sometimes that’s the way the chips fall, and we were on the losing end tonight. Hopefully, that will drive some of these kids to work a little harder and get a little better, and we’ll make a final push here into the postseason.”
Lance Henninger got DuBois off to a strong start in the finals with a 13-2 major decision in the opening bout, but the Braves rattled off three straight wins from 182-220 to take a 10-4 lead.
The Beavers roared back in front with three consecutive wins of their own.
Senior Matt Starr pinned Brave Derek Reitz with nine seconds left in their heavyweight bout, while freshman Chandler Ho scored a third-period, 16-1 technical fall against Jared Zartman at 106.
A 24-second pin by Trenton Donahue at 113 gave DuBois a 21-10 lead before the teams traded six-point wins — a pin by Brave Drew Balestrini at 120 and Scott’s forfeit at 126.
That set the stage for Quinones’ huge fall at 132, which set the closing stretch in motion for Shikellamy’s victory.
In semifinal action:
DuBois opened the D-4/9 Team Tournament with a lopsided 52-21 win over Selinsgrove. The Beavers won 10 of 14 bouts in the match — scoring bonus points in eight of those victories.
The Beavers racked up six pins in the match, with Henninger, Alex O’Harrah, Chandler Ho, Scott, Woodrow and Kolby Ho all recording falls.
Donahue added a forfeit win, while teamamte Eric Schneider won by major decision. Izsak Kerner and Garrett Starr each won by decision, with Starr pulling out the closest bout of the match when he scored a takedown in overtime to edge Drew Peterman, 4-2.
DuBois is now off until Feb. 12 when it travels to Punxsutawney.
The Clearfield Bison lost three of the first four bouts against Shikellamy and were never able to recover from that early 15-6 deficit.
A forfeit win by Luke McGonigal at 220 pulled the Bison within three at 15-12, but the Braves won four of the next six bouts — scoring bonus points in three — to build a commanding 36-19 advantage with three weights left.
In the end, Clearfield won just five bouts.
Hunter Wright notched a second-period at 170 to give the Bison an early 6-3 lead, while teammate Quentin Edwards captured a second-period fall of his own late in the match at 138.
Clearfield also got back-to-back wins at 113 and 120 from Peyton Smay and Matt Ryan, respectively. Smay major decisioned Damian Wolfe, 12-0, while Ryan pulled out a hard-fought 14-9 win over Drew Balestrini.
The Bison close out its regular season Tuesday at home against Philipsburg-Osceola.