The seventh Border Brawl turned into a border blowout, and it had quite the fantastic finish.
Before a jam-packed pair of bleachers at Clarence, the top-ranked large school in Western New York dominated much of the evening in what would be a 57-18 ECIC I victory over neighbor and third-ranked Lancaster.
But it was in the third-to-last bout of the night, with the team competition settled, that had the Clarence bench leaping out of its chairs and left the entire crowd walking away talking about it. Clarence senior Austin Krawczyk pinned Lancaster senior Eric Lewandowski 21 seconds into the third period of their 138-pound bout to provide the highlight on a tremendous night for the Red Devils. Lewandowski is ranked second in Western New York at 145.
“I knew he was an amazing wrestler, he’s fantastic – I was just going out to wrestle my best and it paid off at the end,” said Krawczyk. “I knew he was trying to throw me the whole match, so I just went with it. I ended up catching him, and that put him down for the rest of the match, which helped me win.”
Clarence won 11 of the 15 matches, including the first three to lead 14-0. The meet started at 160, where Pat Spoth scored a major decision.
Jake Weber followed with another major decision at 170, and Travis Griner added a pin in 1:56 at 182 against Jeffrey Kuciel of Lancaster.
“We thought it would be a close matches going in – there were a couple of swing matches that we thought were going to go the other way,” Clarence coach Jason Chase said of the wins by Krawczyk and Griner.
Clarence continued to rack up points with wins by Nate Ward (pin at 285), Dylan Arena (pin at 99) before Ryan Burns scored the 100th victory of his career at 106 (a 9-3 decision). The Red Devils got a pin by Austin Czaja (126), a major decision from Brandon Glauber (132), Krawczyk’s pin, and a pin by Nate Schwab at 152. Lancaster winners were Steve Michel (120), Brian Wells (145), James Empfield (195) and Michael Ziolo (220).