Julian Chlebove acknowledges that he has plenty of “haters” in the wrestling world, but that only seems to motivate him.
The Northampton senior came away from last weekend’s PIAA 3A wrestling championships with his third state title in four years after dispatching Bethlehem Catholic’s Kenny Herrmann 6-2 in the 132-pound finals.
It was the seventh-straight win over Herrmann and the third in as many weeks en route to completing his K-Kid career on the mats.
Northampton’s wrestling team is gearing up for one of their best potential individual postseason runs in recent memory when the District 11 tournament kicks off this Friday and Saturday at Liberty’s Memorial Gymnasium. The Kids return six wrestlers with previous district medals and are one of the top teams that can battle with Bethlehem Catholic in the team standings heading into the tournament.
After losing to Becahi in the state championship two weeks ago, Northampton will be on a collision course with the Hawks for the team race this weekend.
The District 11 dual tournament kicks off this Thursday night to officially begin the postseason run for area teams with opening round 3A action taking place at Liberty and Northampton.
Freedom (eighth seed) will open with Emmaus (ninth seed) at 6 p.m. for the right to the on top-seeded Liberty at 7:30 p.m. at Memorial Gymnasium.
The other opening round bout at Liberty features Nazareth (fifth seed) taking on Whitehall (12th seed), with the winner moving on to take on Stroudsburg (fourth seed).
Northampton’s Julian Chlebove came home from the Escape the Rock tournament with a gold medal, while the K-Kids medaled four wrestlers in the tournament for a fifth place finish last weekend.
Chlebove handled Bethlehem Catholic’s Kenny Herrmann 7-2 in the 132-pound championship to lead the way for Northampton, who finished fifth in the tournament overall with 117.5 points.
Northampton’s wrestling team will have an opportunity to test their mettle in one last regular season tournament before they prep for the postseason stretch run when they head to Council Rock South this weekend for the Escape the Rock tournament.
The K-Kids finished 18th as a team last year and came away with four medalists, but should be able to improve upon that performance with the team they bring to the field this year.
Head coach Seth Lisa fully expects that to happen as well.
Northampton’s wrestling team is coming off a dominating performance at the Parkland Duals over the weekend and the K-Kids now hope they can build off that heading into the second half of the season.
The Kids (8-2) went 5-0 in the event at Parkland pounding all of their opponents in the tournament with wins over Boyertown (64-9), Mariana Bracetti (75-6), Central High (73-3), Cumberland Valley (67-10) and Souderton (72-3).
Head coach Seth Lisa was happy to see his team dominate in the event, like they were expected to.
Northampton’s wrestling team is brimming with confidence early in the season following last week’s win over Nazareth and the K-Kids (2-0) now enter their toughest stretch of the regular season this week.
With their annual trip to the Beast of the East coming this weekend, the Kids have EPC matches with Stroudsburg and Bethlehem Catholic this week as precursors to the toughest weekend tournament they’ll see this year as a team.
Head coach Seth Lisa knows the team’s mentality has elevated since last week’s convincing 41-20 victory over Nazareth.
Northampton should find itself as one of the top-four wrestling teams in the area this season, but can the K-Kids work their way toward a team spot in Hershey.
With the chase for District 11’s top two spots for Hershey going to Bethlehem Catholic and Nazareth as of late, Northampton could be in position to battle the likes of Liberty and Nazareth for a state bid.
With district titles handed out last week in various District 11 sub classifications, this weekend presents the showdowns that really count.
Freedom and Emmaus square off in must-see TV at Northampton Friday night and Bethlehem Catholic and Saucon Valley tango yet again at Nazareth on Saturday. With Becahi coming in as favorites over the Panthers, Friday’s 6A championship should be one for the memory books between two teams that have played the best football all year.
It’s only fitting that a gold medal is on the line.
We had a predictable first week of the postseason, but things spice up a bit this week in all classes as the cream rises to the top.
Freedom and Parkland highlight the big boy affair in 6A, while Becahi should keep pounding their way in 4A. Notre Dame is looking for a 3A title, but the second most interesting game of the weekend takes place in Saucon Valley with a Colonial League showdown with Northwestern.
Who will come out on top this week? Check out this week’s picks below.
1. Freedom (10-1)
Last week’s rank: #1
Can the Pates get back to normal?