By Bill Albright
For The Daily Item
Mill Hall -- It was a road with a few bumps in it for Valley's teams as the first day of the 2012 King of the Mountain wrestling tournament came to a halt early Friday night.
The area will be represented by five wrestlers in the championship quarterfinals, three from Mifflinburg and two from Line Mountain.
Leading the Wildcats was their tenacious trio of Cole Walter, Ty Walter and Nazar Mironenko.
Cole posted a technical fall over Bellefonte's Zach Musser and a fall over Austin Schreckengast of Redbank Valley to advance, while brother Ty was nearly as dominant with a 20-8 major decision over Taylor Foster of Juniata before mauling Austin Moffett of Reynolds for a 15-0 technical fall in 2:47 in his second bout.
The third Wildcat to advance to the championship quarterfinal round, defending PIAA Class AA state champion Mironenko. After receiving a first-round bye, Mironenko tossed a 5-0 shutout at Bethlehem Catholic's Andrew Dunn.
"We thought those three would be right where they are and anything less would have been a disappointment," said Mifflinburg coach Al Fluman. "In addition to those three, we had seven more guys who were wrestling in the consolation rounds and hopefully some of them will still be wrestling (today) so we'll see what happens."
Although it is early in the season, Fluman and his assistants believe some of their wrestlers are spinning their wheels somewhat.
"Since the Top Hat and with the match last week, we are seeing what we have been seeing and that is not what I am expecting to see, obviously. There are a couple of guys who we (as coaches) know have to turn the corner. They are getting there slowly and we are seeing some improvement, but we still have a ways to go. What I am seeing is some guys who aren't confident in what they are trying to hit and we hit them every day. I know they can hit them, we know they can hit them, but they have to do it."