SOL PIAA Wrestling Update: Stillings Going for the Gold

Pennridge senior Josh Stillings will be going for the gold in Saturday night’s finals at the PIAA 3A Individual Wrestling Championships. Glenn Kaiser highlights all the SOL medal winners who will be competing.


By Glenn Kaiser

Pennridge’s 182-pounder Josh Stillings cruised through his bracket on his way back to the state finals in Hershey, PA, for his second chance to capture gold.  There is nothing more that he wants then a state championship.  Stillings can become the Rams second state champ. Dan Goetter was the first and only back in 2005.  Stillings was nearly perfect Saturday morning in his semifinal match, winning 7-2 over Shikellamy’s Josh Krieger using a takedown and back-points to easily advance to the championship bout Saturday evening.  He gave up a meaningless reversal at the end of the bout.  The finals begin at 7:00pm at the Giant Center.

Stillings beat Cedar Cliff’s Donovon Ball 8-1 Friday in the quarterfinals to set-up his semifinal match.  He will now face Tim Wallace from Albert Gallatin with a state title on the line.  Stillings, up two weight classes from a year ago, continues to ground and pound from the top position, dominating opponents while racking up near-fall points on the regular.  His improved offense on his feet has enabled him to open up early leads with takedowns and ride to win.  This has been his recipe for success all season long.

Council Rock South’s Kyle Waterman (106) and Souderton’s Tyler Williams (132) also reached the semifinals in their respective weight classes with impressive wins in the quarterfinals.  Waterman edged Dave Evans from Tunkhannock Friday 4-3 to set-up his semi versus Seneca Valley’s Alejandro Herrera.  Herrara came out through the bracket as the SW-2.  Waterman could not get his offense going in his match with Herrera and lost a 4-1 decision, dropping him to the consolation semifinals.  

Williams, who has been wrestling extremely well, continued his winning ways Friday, topping Zack Zeame, the bracket buster from Manheim Central, with a couple of takedowns 6-1.  However, Williams could not get it going against Franklin Regional’s Colton Camacho, the SW champ.  Camacho posted an 8-4 win despite Tyler getting himself back into the match in the third period.  Waterman and Williams will both wrestle for 5th place this evening versus Ben Monn (Cumberland Valley) and Nick Coy (Penn Trafford) respectively.

Joining them will be Council Rock North’s Cam Robinson at 138-pounds vying for 5th after dropping his consolation semifinal match to Kiski’s Noah Levett (SW-1) 7-3.   Robinson was fabulous in the wrestle backs, winning Friday 7-4 over Tim Hritsko (Cannon Mac) and downing Parkland’s Zack Ortman 5-1 Saturday morning.

Other SOL medalists will be Truman’s Gunnar Fuss (126), CR South’s Ben Radner (132), Tennent’s Yusuf Aladinov (195), and North Penn’s Patrick O’Neill (160) and Ryan Cody (285) as they all will compete in their weight classes 7th place bouts.  Medals are awarded to the top eight finishers in each weight class. 

Aladinov remained a dangerous wrestler this postseason as he continued to find ways to win. In fact, without a blood stoppage in his round of sixteen match against Connellsville’s Nate Ansell, he most likely would have advanced to the semifinals.  Aladinov was pinning Ansell when the official stopped the match due to Ansell’s bleeding. He then recovered and was able to get a late takedown to knock Aladinov down to the consis with the 8-7 loss.  Aladinov recorded a fall in his first match in the consis, and then advanced to the consi-quarters with a 7-5 win over Nathan Mankey (North Hills).  However, he could not get by D1 foe and SE regional champion Elijah Jones (Boyertown) there, as Jones recorded a fall.

The state title matches along with 3rd, 5th and 7th place bouts will all be wrestled simultaneously in the Giant Center starting at 7:00pm tonight and will be broadcast live on the PCN television station, hosted by former North Penn wrestler and current wrestling official Kyle Berger.