Dylan Evans, Brady Joling

Dylan Evans (left) and Brady Joling (right) were the top area wrestlers performing at the South West Regional Tournament. The Chartiers Valley duo both earned runner-up honors in their respective weight classes and advanced to the PIAA championships, held March 9-11 at the Giant Center in Hershey.

Several area wrestlers placed at the WPIAL Class AAA Regional Tournament held March 3-4 at Canon-McMillan.

Four of those grapplers gained berths in the PIAA Championships held March 9-11 at the Giant Center in Hershey.

Chartiers Valley had the top finishers at the regional as Dylan Evans and Brady Joling earned runner-up honors in their respective weight classes.

Evans, who was a defending WPIAL and PIAA champion, dropped a tough bout in the 160-pound finals at the regional. The senior succumbed, 3-2, on the ultimate tiebreaker, to Shawn Taylor in the championship match.

A Pitt recruit, Evans cruised into the finals with technical falls in his first two matches. He scored a major decision, 19-8, over North Allegheny’s Adam Rohan in the semifinals.

Evans, who is the all-time winningest wrestler in CV history, entered the state tournament with a 32-4 record.

Meanwhile, Joling finished second in the 121-pound weight class. He dropped an 11-2 decision to top-seeded Ryan Klingensmith from Kiski Area in the finals.

A Davidson recruit, Joling used a major decision and ensuing wins in the quarterfinals and semifinals to reach the championship contest.

A senior, Joling entered the PIAA tournament with a 31-8 record.

Peters Township’s Chris Cibrone and Mt. Lebanon’s Eli Montoya joined the CV duo in Hershey for the PIAA championships.

A junior, Cibrone earned a bronze medal at 145. He scored a 7-2 decision over NA’s Jayson Flener in the consolation match.

Cibrone had previously beaten Flener in the quarterfinals, 7-2. He dropped into the consolation matches after falling to eventual champion Mac Church of Waynesburg, 21-8, in the semifinals.

Cibrone entered the PIAA tournament with a 28-11 record.

Other top finishers for the Indians included Darius McMillon, fifth at 133; and Zack Stromock, eighth at 285. John Randor (127), AJ McGarrity (139) and Parker Nave (172) were eliminated in their consolation matches.

Montoya earned his state berth by scoring a decision, 6-3, over NA’s Gus Stedeford in the blood round. Montoya finished fourth overall at 107 after falling to Penn-Trafford’s Dylan Barrett in the third-place consolation match.

A junior, Montoya lost to eventual WPIAL champion Tanner Mizenko from Canon-McMillan in the quarterfinals. He entered the PIAA tournament with a 30-6 record.

Cole Gibbons joined Montoya on the podium. The freshman took sixth at 145 pounds. Other Lebo wrestlers that participated at the regionals but did not place included Franco Busalacchi (133) and Ben Lloyd (285)

Bethel Park placed two on the podium. Ethan Higgins secured sixth placed at 139 while Mason Kernan, because of an injury, finished sixth at 133.

For South Fayette, Jonathan Baiano finished sixth at 121.

Ben Cedar of Upper St. Clair won his first match at 152 but lost to eventual WPIAL champion Ty Watters from West Allegheny in the quarterfinals. Cedar then lost his consolation bout and finished 33-10 overall on the year.

Almanac Sports Editor

An award-winning journalist, Eleanor Bailey has been employed by Observer Publishing Company since 1982. She is the sports editor at The Almanac and a contributor for the Observer-Reporter.

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