Josh Beal Punches Ticket To States With Third Place Finish At Northwest Regional Wrestling Tournament, Logan Powell And Jake Henry Also Competed

Above photo courtesy of Central Clarion Wildcats Wrestling – Josh Beal (Central Clarion) 3rd, Carson Neely (Port Allegany) 1st, John Duran (Fort LeBoeuf) 2nd, Joey Peterson (Greenville) 4th.

The Central Clarion Wildcats competed in the PIAA Northwest Regional Class-AA Wrestling Tournament held at Sharon High School, held on Friday and Saturday, March 1st and 2nd.

In this historic first season for the Wildcats, three wrestlers made history as their first three regional participants, Logan Powell at 133, Jake Henry at 160 and Josh Beal at 285. Josh made further history as he placed third, becoming the Wildcats’ first regional place winner and also becomes the first Central Clarion wrestler to advance to the Pennsylvania State Athletic Association (PIAA) State Championships, at the Giant Center in Hershey, this Thursday, March 7th through Saturday, March 9th.

Josh opened the competition by pinning Greenville’s Joey Peterson at 3:46, in the Championship Quarterfinals.

Photo by Jon Beal – Josh’s first round win

He then lost by a close 3-0 decision, in the Championship Semifinals to John Duran from Fort LeBoeuf, the eventual second place winner.

Josh bounced back in the Consolation Semifinals, with a win by fall over Northwestern’s Greg Gruda at 3:45. With that victory, Josh secured his place in the State Tournament.

Photo by Jon Beal – The pin that secured State berth for Josh.

Josh then won the Third Place Match with a hard fought 3-2 decision over Joey Peterson from Greenville.

Josh said, “I absolutely loved the atmosphere in the room, being there with my teammates, coaches and family. The support I have had this year on all of those fronts, I can never be thankful enough for.

“I can’t actually describe the feeling I got after winning that blood round match knowing I was going to states. Everything seemed to finally fall together, and I was Hershey bound.”

Logan dropped a major decision to eventual champion Hudson Hohman from Grove City, in the Championship Quarterfinals .

Photo by Jon Beal – Logan in action at regionals

He came back with a 7-3 decision over Ethan Springer from Sharpsville in Consolation Round 1. Logan dropped a 7-3 decision to Nate Sterns from Titusville in Consolation Round 2.

Jake lost by fall to Reynolds’ Vito Gentile in Championship Round 1 and lost by technical fall to Cash Morrell from Cochranton in Consolation Round 1.

Photo by Jon Beal – Jake in action at regionals

Coach Braun Gourley shared these fine words, “We discussed all week the importance of this event and difficulty of what it takes to get there.  All three qualifiers represented the Wildcats with pride. 

“Although Jake and Logan’s season came to an end the coaches were extremely proud of the effort and hard work they put in to get to Regionals. I am excited to watch these young men grow as wrestlers next year.” 

And summarizing Josh’s tournament action, “Josh had a great tournament as evident with his third place result.  He opened the tournament with a fall over his opponent from Greenville.  Josh wrestled very well that match. 

On day two Josh had a rematch with the District 10 champion.  We wrestled him at Hickory in the beginning of the year, losing 3-1 in sudden victory.  Josh lost this semifinal match 3-0.  This put Josh in what we call the “blood round.”  Winner moves on to states, the loser stays home. 

“Josh fell behind in this match 9-2 but remained calm and eventually pinned his opponent punching his ticket to states. 

“This set up a rematch for third place with the wrestler from Greenville.  Josh prevailed 3-2 earning third place at the Northwest Regional tournament.

“Great tournament for Josh!”

Reynolds was the Team Champion. Clearfield and Grove City tied for second, with Cranberry and Brookville rounding out the Top 5.

(Congratulations to Josh and have a great State Tournament!!!! Congratulations to Logan and Jake on your fine seasons!!!!)

(Thanks to Jon Beal and Central Clarion Wildcat Wrestling for their photos!!!!!)