Defeating the PIAA champs


Kelly Biscuit

On Jan. 7 at 7, the wrestling team went head to head with Boiling Springs High School, the PIAA champs and Big Spring’s biggest rival this year. Going into the match, Big Spring wrestlers felt confident they would win, but that didn’t stop them from worrying about the match. Stephen Kleckner, a freshman on the team, said, “I think as a team it will be a very close score. I don’t want to doubt our team but Boiling Springs has the advantage with them being state champions; going into this we’re underdogs, but I think if we show up to wrestle and nothing else, we got this.” Kleckner also said, “I am here to wrestle! This is a very important match to us and we have everything we need going into this match. All we need to do is wrestle our hearts out then we got this.”

Britian Shields, a junior wrestler, said, “As a team I think if we bring everything we have, win the close matches, and get falls then we should be able to win. For me as far as winning goes I will try my best and fight to the whistle; I think I’ll do good. No doubt this will be a challenging match though, every year it is and it’s always close.” Wrestler Kyle Brobst added that “Boiling Springs is always tough, but we need to come to wrestle. We need to show up to wrestle and if we don’t bring our “A game” we will lose.” Brobst though he would have  good match personally. “I should have a good match tonight; if I wrestle good I will win.” Coach Nathan Gutshall said that to prepare for matches “We work hard in practice every day and many of the kids go to clubs and get extra workouts on the side.” Although the boys practice a ton, Gutshall said, “Boiling Springs is the returning PIAA State Champs, so they are tough but win or lose, we’ll keep working and fighting the next fight.” Brobst predicted before the match that the team would win 33-28. It turns out, he was very close.

After their loss to Northern York of 26 to 45 the day before, it was a tough call to tell how this match was going to go, but the team came out on top against Boiling Springs with a score of 36-28. During this match, some special recognition was earned by Taylor Farlling who defeated Cameron Palmer at 132 pounds even though he appeared outmatched. Farlling beat out Palmer in the final minute of regulation locking in their team’s victory, being the 3rd to last wrestler from Big Spring to take the mat. Along with his amazing pin, Big Spring had two other pins by Britian Shields and Chance Rayhart.

After the wrestling match was over, Coach Gutshall was asked to reflect on what they did well, if they met expectations, and what they’d redo if they could. Gutshall said, “The team definitely met expectations; they did a great job! We talk about ‘fighting, fighting until the end’ and that they did.” The boys definitely changed the game on the PIAA State Champs who were expecting another win on local television, instead of the 36 to 28 final score. Overall Gutshall said, “It was a total team effort and I love each and every one of them.” He stressed that although he is proud of the team, they will still work hard, striving to get better.