Area Wrestlers Fare Well at Holiday Tourney
Wald, Bruce, Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
While Central Dauphin High School from PIAA District 3 became the 19th different school to win the now 41-year-old POWERade High School Wrestling Tournament over the holidays, area wrestlers stood out individually.
Lance Bryson of Albert Gallatin High School won the 171-pound title, while Belle Vernon Area High School's Donnie Tasser earned runner-up honors at 152 pounds.
The 2007 POWERade Tournament, held for the fifth straight year at Canon-McMillan High School Dec. 28-29, consisted of 42 teams, the tourney's largest field ever.
The team standings were: Central Dauphin (214.50), Colonial Forge of Virginia (198), Shady Side Academy (157), Christiansburg of Virginia (146), Connellsville (144), Burrell (142), Hempfield (136), Parkersburg of West Virginia (134), Canon McMillan (132), Penn Trafford (107), Blue Mountain PIAA District 11 (103), Harrison of Georgia (97), Bellefonte PIAA District 6 (96), Mt. St. Joseph of Maryland (95.50), Southern Regional of New Jersey (95), Westmont Hilltop PIAA District 6 (94.50), Fauquier of Virginia (91.50), Chartiers Valley (85), State College PIAA District 6 (85), Albert Gallatin (81), Mt. Pleasant (75), Cedar Cliff PIAA District 3 (74.50), West Allegheny (71.50), Emmaus PIAA District 11 (70), Latrobe (66), Indiana Valley PIAA District 6 (65.50), North Star PIAA District 5 (63), Franklin Regional (61.50), Belle Vernon Area (61), Waynesburg (61), Derry (60), Burgettstown (57), Pleasant Valley PIAA District 11 (57), South Side Beaver (57), McGuffey (56), Fort LeBoeuf PIAA District 10 (54.50), Solon of Ohio (49.50), Trinity (43), West Greene (38), Chartiers-Houston (37), Iroquois PIAA District 10(26) and Greensburg Salem (24.50).
Central Dauphin's team title last month marked the eighth straight year a school not from the Western Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic League won the POWERade team championship. The last WPIAL team to win was Connellsville Area High School in 1999.
Preceding Central Dauphin as recent non-WPIAL POWERade team champions were Christiansburg of Virginia (2006) Cincinnati Moeller (2005), Mt. St. Joseph of Maryland (2004), Walsh Jesuit of Ohio (2003 & 2002), State College (2001), and St. Edward's Academy of Ohio.
"If you look at the tournament's history, the WPIAL teams have been dominant," said tournament director Frank Vulcano Jr., whose father, Frank Sr., started this tournament in 1967 before handing the directorship to his son in 1985. "These things run in trends and the reputation of the WPIAL has helped us attract many powerful teams from other states."
The younger Vulcano secured the POWERade corporate sponsorship in 1994 and was inducted into the Southwestern Pennsylvania Wrestling Hall of Fame in the spring of 2005. At a special ceremony at the 2003 PIAA Championships in Hershey, Vulcano received the Pennsylvania Man of the Year award from USA Wrestling for his contribution to the sport. Vulcano won the 185-pound POWERade championship in 1980 during his senior year at Chartiers-Houston High School.
Connellsville Area High School and fellow WPIAL (Pa. District 7) member Chartiers-Houston High School led all tourney participants with seven team titles each.
Three-time POWERade team champions include McGuffey, Mt. Carmel of Illinois and Waynesburg high schools.
Walsh Jesuit, North Allegheny, St. Edwards, and Trinity High Schools are all two-time POWERade champions. Central Dauphin joins Christiansburg, Moeller, Mt. St. Joseph, State College, Clearfield, German Township, Mt. …