The starting point couldn't have been much better for the Dover wrestling team on Tuesday night against rival West York.
With two quality upper weights in Cameron Beckman and Dan Bisking, a pending forfeit by the Bulldogs at 106 and Brandon Rodriguez at looming at 113, the visitors envisioned having a 24-0 advantage after the first four bouts.
That was until West York junior Hunter Scheivert had his say.
After Beckman earned a major decision at 220 against West York's Austin Dennoncourt, Scheivert took to the mat against Bisking.
It was just a year ago that Bisking locked in a double-underhook to pin the Bulldog 285-pounder.
Scheivert learned a lesson from that match and applied it wisely on Tuesday. Bisking made a similar play again, but Scheivert countered with a headlock that he turned into a quick pin just 56 seconds into the match.
That fall, one of seven from West York wrestlers, set the tone for the home team, which cruised to a 53-22 victory over the Eagles.
"I was just waiting for him to do his double-underhook," Scheivert said. "I got the headlock in and then was fully committed. After that I was thinking, 'let's slap the mat so we can take the lead.'"
Suddenly a 24-0 advantage was no longer an option for the Eagles.
"That was a key match for us," West York coach Brian Gross said. "That really set the tone for the team."
Dover coach Brad Brosius, who coached the West York Junior High club before taking over the Eagles' program last year, was hoping that history would repeat itself.
"We got caught," Brosius said. "We started out where we wanted to and we thought we'd build a pretty big lead, but getting caught at 285 sort of took away some of our momentum."
The early West York advantage was short-lived after the Bulldog forfeit at 106, followed by a 42-second pin by Rodriguez at 113 gave Dover a 16-6 lead. But the home team put on a clinic the rest of the way.
Cole Rinehart (120) started the surge with a 5-2 decision over Cameron Palmer before back-to-back falls from Gavin Toomey (126) and Allen Stauffer (132) put the Bulldogs ahead for good at 21-16.
After Sam Sterner (138) won an 8-4 decision, Ryan Narber (145) scored a fall in 52 seconds. A technical fall by Garrett Stauffer at 152 (20-3, 3:02) was the end of a string of six-straight victories for the Bulldogs (9-6 overall, 4-2 York-Adams Division I), increasing the lead to 35-16.
Logan Ambrose (160) scored the final points for Dover (6-5 overall, 3-4 Division I) with a pin in 1:47, but that fall couldn't stop the West York momentum. Pins by Dan Myers (170), Kyle Narber (182) and Jake Ciechoski (195) capped an impressive night for the home team.
"This was the best we've wrestled all year," Gross said. "I'm proud of our guys. They pushed the action early and it paid off in getting falls."
Spring Grove 47, Red Lion 18: The visiting Rockets improved to 7-0 in York-Adams Division I competition by winning 10 of 14 bouts, getting major decisions from Mason Bentzel (152) and Levi Witmer (126) and pins from Trey Baker (182), Hunter Sterner (195), Alec Zorbaugh (113) and Zack Clingan (120). The bout of the night came between two of the better 285-pounders in the league when Red Lion's Jared Schell pinned C.J. Sterner in overtime at 6:20. The host Lions also received a pin from Anthony Moser (220).
Kennard-Dale 57, Northeastern 12: The host Rams improved to 2-4 in York-Adams Division I competition with the victory. One more league win this season for the Rams would be the most Division I wins in a season in program history. Elliot Stauffer (170), Chance Marsteller (182), Andrew Barnett (113), Mike Bracey (120), Troy Jones (126), Michael Payan (138), Austin McNamee (145), Nathan Stewart (152) and Pat Scarborough (160) each picked up pins for K-D. The Rams took all but two of 12 bouts in the match. Blaine Yinger (220) had the lone pin for the visiting Bobcats.
New Oxford 44, Dallastown 28: At Dallastown, the Colonials improved to 12-0 overall and 7-0 in York-Adams Division I. Noah Richley (106), Shane Hoff (160) and Dalton Smith (220) had pins for New Oxford. Dallastown got pins from Rodney Sunday (126), Nick Shields (132) and Jordan Burns (195). The Colonials will next host Spring Grove (7-0 league) on Thursday in a match that will likely decide the winner of the Division I crown.
Eastern 51, Fairfield 16: At Wrightsville, the home team was helped by eight forfeits. For the Green Knights, Nick Mort (170) and David Stone (145) each picked up pins. Eastern improved to 3-1 in York-Adams Division II.
Bermudian Springs 73, York Suburban 3: At Suburban, the Eagles improved to 13-4 overall and 6-0 in York-Adams Division II. Suburban fell to 5-2 overall and 5-1 in Division II. Austin Claybaugh (106), Bailey Oberlander (113), Dalton Becker (120), Noah Fleshman (132), Ted Marines (145), Jared Spahr (152), Colton Dull (182) and Brady Linebaugh (285) had pins for Bermudian.
Biglerville 59, York Tech 17: At Biglerville, the Canners moved to 11-5 overall and 4-0 in York-Adams Division II. The Canners got pins from Ryan Kuhn (113), Brock Asper (126), Scott Cooper (138), Jasper Hankey (145), Alex King (152), Dustin Grubbs (170) and Nate Mentzer (220).
South Western 62, Susquehannock 10: At Hanover, the Mustangs (9-6 overall) improved to 5-1 in York-Adams Division I. Chase Mowery (106), Derek Wilson (113), Owen Wherley (120), Cole Sterrett (126), Brandon Huff (132), Gage Thomas (152), Michael Harris (160) and Logan Bowman (195) had South Western's pins.
-- Reach Ryan Vandersloot at firstname.lastname@example.org.