On Monday 2/8, the Cougars traveled the snowy road West to Exeter HS to take on the Eagles who placed 3rd in the District 3 Duals. The gym was packed and the tension high for the first round of PIAA duals. East couldn’t find any rhythm and made numerous mental errors which cost them the dual 51-15. When competing against a team as balanced and talented as Exeter, there can be no errors and performances have to be “next-level.” Sadly, the Cougar’s magical run came full circle. The lone winners for East were Lukas Richie (106) and Nik Zimmerman (138) who won by fall, and James Strommer (113) who earned a decision. One of the most notable observations of the evening was the shear passion and volume of the Exeter crowd; there are towns across this great state where wrestling is ingrained in the culture and the fans live and breath their local team. Despite the loss, it was truly awesome to be a part of this event. Next up for the Cougars, a trip to the Chesmont League Championships at WC Rustin! Time to regroup, re-fuel, and begin the chase for Hershey! Good luck boys!
The first weekend of February created more magic for the Downingtown East wrestling team. Once again, District 1 rolled out the red carpet for it’s final 8 teams to compete for a birth in the state duals, and the Cougars showed up committed to the task. East honored it’s seed and captured 3rd place in the duals, solidifying their place as one of the best 20 wrestling teams in the great state of Pennsylvania. On Friday night, they beat a state-quality laden Pennridge 32-28, but fell to Council Rock South 44-21. The next day saw the Cougars defeat Chesmont-American league rival WC Rustin 37-31, and Upper Darby 46-24 in the consolation finals. The weekend was grueling, but the pay-off was large. This ’15-’16 East team is the second team in Chester County history to reach the apex of the PIAA duals; the other team was the ’12-’13 Cougars. Talented freshman Lukas Richie (106) and senior captains Wade Cummings (132) and Jude McDowell (160) went undefeated on the weekend. James Strommer (113), Nik Zimmerman (138), and Alec Horne (170) suffered just one loss during the competition. Hats off to team members such as Jake Neubaum (145) and Jack Clay (152) who didn’t check marks in the win column, but battled every second of every match to stave off ranked opponents and protect team points for the Cougars. Congrats also go out to Wade Cummings for collecting his 100th fall and chiseling another record in the Chester County wrestling history books. The East wrestlers showed tremendous courage and resilience in a challenging District 1 field and now deserve their first round PIAA state dual at Exeter HS on Monday night. Keep it rolling gentlemen, and most importantly, believe in what you’ve done!
Downingtown wrestling’s annual “Battle of the Brandywine” visited Boyer Gymnasium at Downingtown East HS Wednesday night (2/3). Fans from across the community came out to support the boys from East and West, some of whom have been wrestling together since their elementary days with Downingtown Thunder. The crowd cheered as the two local powers, both undefeated in the league, put on a great show of wrestling! By evening’s end, the Cougars won 10 of 14 bouts to secure a 41-18 victory and a 5th consecutive league title. Wade Cummings (132), Josh Wileczek (195), and Owen Morris (220) won by fall while James Strommer (113) and Brent Czajkowski (182) picked up major decisions. The heavyweight battle pitted two long-time Downingtown scrappers against each other in Brendan McGinley and Chad Giles. The two giants went into overtime with McGinley prevailing 3-1; the crowd went into frenzy mode! The East-side JV contingent also finished on top winning 6 of 7 bouts. Jarrett Hansen (120), Stuart Regitz (138), Wayne Salt (152), and Carter Regitz (220) all collected falls. The event also recognized the tremendous efforts of East’s senior wrestlers and their parents. Congratulations and gratitude go out to those athletes and their families and best of luck as they reach for the next level. A big thanks goes out to all of the wrestling fans in this great town, East and West alike, and a hearty “good luck” to all of the athletes as they prepare for an exhilarating post-season.
The Cougar wrestlers put on a strong performance Thursday night at the first round of District 1’s 16-team play-off. Facing the Panthers of Quakertown, East won 10 of 14 bouts and wrapped up the dual with a 44-20 scoreline. Wade Cummings (132), Nik Zimmerman (138), and Alec Horne (170) registered pins for the Cougars while Brett Horne (120) won by technical fall. Lukas Richie (106), James Strommer (113), and Connor Birzes (126) added to the total with dominant major decisions. With the victory, East advances to the next rounds of D1 action next weekend at Upper Dublin HS. The stakes get higher and the competition gets hotter! Good luck Cougars!
The remnants of winter storm Jonas could not slow down the Cougar wrestlers as they travelled down Route 1 South to Avon Grove HS Wednesday night and proceeded with league action. East cemented a 61-12 victory while visiting the Devils, winning 12 out of 14 bouts. Lukas Richie (106), James Strommer (113), Brett Horne (120), Connor Birzes (126), Wade Cummings (132), Nik Zimmerman (138), Jude McDowell (160), and Alec Horne (170) all recorded falls for the Cougars. Jack Clay collected his first league decision at 152, and Owen Morris battled to an epic tie-breaker win at 195. The JV Cougars also put on a show, finishing the contest with all wins. Jarrett Hansen, Praneeth Ramesh, Jett Lucas-Murphy, Stuart Regitz, Jack Lawton, Wayne Salt, Jack Hayward, Luke Moran, and Josh Wileczek all collected victories in a total team effort. Congrats on another league win and good luck with the first round of District 1 Duals!
Chesmont wrestling league action unfolded once again Wednesday night as D-East travelled down the Route 100 corridor to take on the Vikings of West Chester East. Their little brothers, the LMS Lions, followed close behind as they made the same trip to wrestle in the same gym against rivals Fugett Middle School. It was an awesome event as fans packed the stands and cheers were heard from all corners of the arena. When the dust settled, Downingtown East defeated the Vikings 45-21 winning 10 of 14 bouts. LMS defeated Fugett 49-42 on the second mat in a wild middle school scrap that saw the teams trading points left and right. It was truly a great night of wrestling for all involved. Upper-weight Cougars Owen Morris (195) and Brendan McGinley (285) registered pins for the team, while Lukas Richie (106), Wade Cummings (132), and Jude McDowell (160) all scored technical falls against a stingy WCE squad. Congrats go out to both East-side teams for tremendous efforts and for sharing a memorable night of wrestling that will grow into a lasting tradition. Good luck in the remaining weeks of January!
Saturday 1/16 saw the East-side wrestlers compete at the Tom Hecker Duals at Garden Spot high school. The competition level was high and the stands were packed. The Cougars clawed their way to the top of their pool defeating Lasalle 49-20, Upper Perkiomen 51-15, Souderton 61-16, and Emmaus 56-15. In the championship final, East crossed over to old foe and perennial power Central Dauphin where they were dealt their first loss of the season, 48-15. Wade Cummings (132), Alec Horne (170), and Lukas Richie (106) went undefeated on the day while Nik Zimmerman (138), BrettHorne (120), Connor Birzes (126), Brent Czajkowski (182), and Owen Morris (195) all took one loss. Wade Cummings also established himself as “King of the Chesmont” by becoming the league’s all-time wins leader with 156 wins. He will be adding to that total going forward. Congrats to the Cougars for a great performance at the duals; the fans wish them the best as they return to league play this week and continue to set the pace.
Wednesday night (1/13) saw league action roll back into play for East wrestling. They faced the black and red of Coatesville at home and defeated the Red Raiders 49-18. Although Coatesville got out to 3-match lead, East stormed back with falls by Brendan McGinley (285), Lukas Richie (106), Connor Birzes (126), Wade Cummings (132), and Nik Zimmerman (138). Senior James Strommer (113) returned to action with a technical fall, and Brett Horne (120) earned a major decision to increase the total. Decisions by Josh Wileczek (195) and Owen Morris (220) sealed the victory. On the JV front, Jett Lucas-Murphy (132), Stu Regitz (138), and Jack Hayward (152) all claimed wins to extend their league winning streaks. Next up for the Cougars is the ever-tough Tom Hecker duals at Garden Spot HS. Good luck to the squad for the weekend and keep up the strong effort!