CANONSBURG – The unthinkable has happened.
Gavin Teasdale, the three-time state champion from Jefferson-Morgan High School, suffered his first loss of his varsity career, 4-3, to Beau Bartlett of Wyoming Seminary in the 126-pound finals Powerade Christmas Wrestling Tournament Saturday.
Teasdale never led in the bout and nearly had a takedown to win the match as the buzzer sounded to end the dual meet in front of a stunned crowd in the Canon-McMillan gym.
“The pressure is off now,” said Jefferson-Morgan head coach Mike Lesko. “We got outworked. Did I think it was a takedown? Probably not. But it was close. He’s upset. I can tell you this: I think he’ll train like a madman now.”
Bartlett scored a takedown with 1:31 to go in the first period and Teasdale escaped. That’s how it stood after one period. Teasdale escaped 12 seconds in to tie the match and that’s how the second period ended, 2-2.
Teasdale had a couple shots at taking Bartlett down but the sophomore repelled each attempt. Bartlett scored the winning takedown with a go-behind move and Teasdale escaped with 18 seconds to go. He had one last chance along the edge but it dissipated when the buzzer sounded.
Teasdale walked to a nearby chair and put his head in his hands. He received his silver medal from Lesko then walked out of the gym.
Bartlett was named Outstanding Wrestler.
While Teasdale found heartbreak, Logan Macri of Canon-McMillan found redemption, stopping Louis Newell, a state runner-up last year from Seneca Valley. Macri scored a takedown 46 seconds into overtime to win the 120-pound weight class.
“This was one of my better tournaments,” said Macri. “I’ve been working on my technique. Everyone in this tournament is good.”
Macri and Newell traded escapes in regulation before the overtime.
Teasdale was trying to become the seventh four-time champion in this event. They six North Allegheny’s Ty Moore (1986-89), Central Dauphin’s Marshall Peppelman (2006-09), Franklin Regional’s Nico Megaludis (2007-10), Derry’s Jimmy Gulibon (2008-11), Kennard Dale’s Chance Marsteller (2010-13) and Latrobe’s Luke Pletcher (2012-15).
Bartlett, ranked sixth in the nation by InterMat, reached the finals with a dramatic, 2-0 decision over Sam Hillegas of North Hills. It was the first loss in the sophomore’s career.
Teasdale was one of four area wrestlers to reach the finals. Macri; Zach Hartman, a 160-pound senior from Belle Vernon; and Kyle Homet, a 170-pound senior from Waynesburg; were the others.
Homet gave up critical takedowns in second and third periods that created a 4-3 loss to Justin McGill of Chestnut Ridge. Homet, the top seed, managed three escapes in the bout, the final one in the waning seconds.
“It’s my senior year and I wanted to win,” said Homet. “It was just like at the Beast of the East, when I took fourth and the kids were third and fourth in the country (who beat me). The kid wrestled a tough match.”
Homet suffered a rib injury in the semifinals and he isn’t sure how serious it is.
“I was struggling breathing and the pain (affected me),” Homet said. “Props to him. He wrestled a great tournament.”
(Macri bout results)
The semifinals, held earlier in the day, saw some surprising results. Jackson Henson, a senior from Waynesburg and two-time West Virginia champion, lost a 4-3 decision to Jack Davis of Wyoming Seminary at 138 pounds. Gerrit Nijenhuis, a sophomore from Canon-McMillan, was shut out, 6-0, by Hartman at 160. Nijenhuis went on to finish third. Teammate Tim Hritsko was sixth at 138.
Jackson Henson ended up third at 138, Caleb Morris was fifth at 160 and Wyatt Henson (120) and Trey Howard each took eighth place in their respective weight class.
For Belle Vernon, Brock Godzin (152) and Scott Joll (170) each took third place.