Bethlehem Press

Sunday, February 17, 2019

Liberty stuns Becahi

Thursday, January 10, 2019 by Peter Car pcar@tnonline.com in Sports

It was a historic moment for Liberty’s wrestling program last Friday night and one that every Hurricane alumni will cherish in the wake of the Hurricanes riveting 32-30 victory over Bethlehem Catholic at Memorial Gymnasium.

Senior Jake Ahmad (220) secured a takedown in the final 30 seconds of the final bout of the night against Joe Kurtz for a 3-1 decision that clinched the biggest result of the season in District 11, and perhaps in recent memory.

The win pushed Liberty to 9-0 on the season and marked the first time Liberty has beaten Becahi (5-1) in nine years. It was also the first Becahi loss in the regular season since 2011 when they lost their regular season finale to Easton at home.

“The win over Beca ranks among the best for sure,” said head coach Jody Karam. “Keeping the team focused and humble isn’t a big concern, but it is certainly an area we pay attention to. We are in a good place as a team right now, but we want to be in a better place down the road. As long as we buy into that mindset, the season could be a very good one.”

After knocking off Northampton 38-32 last week as well, Liberty has cemented itself as the team to beat this year, but Karam knows that there are greater rewards down the road, rather than January dual meets.

“I think we woke up a sleeping giant in Beca and there is no doubt that Northampton is not happy losing to us,” Karam said. “Neither of those teams are going to need any motivation the next time they face us. I also feel Nazareth will be very tough to beat once they get their lineup back to full strength. Easton showed some really good things against Nazareth, and I see that program making a move.”

The Hurricanes look poised to finish the regular season undefeated with Emmaus (6-3), Pleasant Valley (6-7), Stroudsburg (6-2) and Pocono Mountain West (1-6) left on deck this season. Liberty will head off to the Virginia Duals this weekend to keep testing its mettle, in what should be their toughest dual tournament of the regular season.

Becahi will now refocus with Wednesday’s match against Pleasant Valley, as it looks to regroup from last week’s defeat.

Freedom (11-3) has now won six straight following a 64-7 loss to Nazareth in December, including a 38-23 win over Parkland to kick-start that span. The Pates went 5-0 over the weekend at the Line Mountain Duals and look to solidify their way towards a postseason berth with a bout against Dieruff (3-2) this week.