Parkland Press

Monday, June 18, 2018
Brandon Kassis took third place at districts and is one of six Parkland wrestlers that will compete in this weekend’s regional championships.PRESS PHOTO BY DON HERB Copyright - Don Herb 2017_ Brandon Kassis took third place at districts and is one of six Parkland wrestlers that will compete in this weekend’s regional championships.PRESS PHOTO BY DON HERB Copyright - Don Herb 2017_

Six Trojans qualify for regional tourney

Thursday, March 1, 2018 by Mike Haines mhaines@tnonline.com in Sports

Parkland had 12 wrestlers compete in last week’s District 11 Class 3A Championships. Half of them earned their way through the tournament and into this week’s Northeast Regional Championships.

Leading the list was silver medalist Zach Ortman at 138 pounds. Brandon Kassis (120) took third place, while teammates Nick Dolak, Joey Guida (152) and Adam Lizak (182) placed fourth. Nate Wieder (220) took fifth place to round out Parkland’s list of regional qualifiers.

“It was a great tournament for us,” said Parkland head coach Mike Ottinger. “I think some of our guys peaked and I hope we keep peaking for regionals and states.

Ortman, a fourth-place finisher at states last year after taking third in both districts and regionals, came in to districts as the top seed in his weight class this year. He won his first two bouts by fall and then beat Nazareth’s Nate Stefanik 1-0 in the district semifinal.

Bethlehem Catholic’s Ryan Anderson handed Ortman a 12-3 major decision loss in the district final.

Ortman was disappointed with not earning gold in his senior year, but he’ll have another chance next week and likely after that.

“It’s a really tough tournament and unless you’re on top you’re kind of beating yourself up over it,” said Ottinger. “I think we can find a way to win that match and knock that guy off. He’s got two arms and two legs just like everybody else.”

Ortman left the gym last weekend with his fourth district medal in his four years of high school. He took fifth as a freshman and sixth as a sophomore, qualifying for regionals three of his four years. He hopes his career ends back on the medal stand in Hershey, where last year he was one of three District 11 wrestlers to place in the top four.

“Last year showed I can get out there and do some damage,” said Ortman. “Just getting out of [District 11] is tough enough. I think it prepares me for Hershey.”

Kassis entered the tournament as the No. 2 seed. He pinned his first opponent and won by decisions in the next two rounds before facing top-seeded Sean Pierson (Nazareth) in the finals. Pierson won the bout 10-5.

Dolak was seeded fifth at 126. He fell to No. 1 seed Kenny Hermann (Bethlehem Catholic) then won a consolation bout to get to the third-place match. Northampton’s Jagger Condomitti beat Dolak 7-0 in the third-place match.

Guida was also seeded fifth, but lost his second bout and fell into the consolation bracket, where he won three matches in a row before falling to Bangor’s Eddie Hay 6-4 in the third-place match.

Lizak, the No. 4 seed at 182, also lost his second bout and had to win three straight consolation matches to get to the third-plae match against Austin Sphar (East Stroudsburg South). Sphar won the match 6-2.

Wieder was the No. 8 seed and lost his first match in overtime. He battled back to the fifth-place match where he expected to wrestle for the final spot in districts, but he got a forfeit win to ensure his trip to regionals.

The top four wrestlers in each weight class at the regional tournament will move on to the state championships in Hershey March 8-10.