Oblock Athlete of the Week
Name: Matt Oblock
Oblock’s Week: Oblock came into the Tri-County Athletic Directors Association Wrestling Tournament as an unseeded freshman and left as the 120-pound champion. In the process, Oblock knocked off the top two seeded wrestlers in the weight class.
Oblock began the two-day tournament with a pin in 1:22 of Zeke Beatty, a junior from Laurel Highlands. In the quarterfinals, Oblock defeated top-seeded Austin McDermitt, a junior from Burgettstown, 4-3, in an ultimate tiebreaker. He advanced to the finals with a pin in 1:42 of Luke Lloyd, a sophomore from Avella.
In the finals, Oblock captured a hard-fought 4-2 decision over second-seeded Jake Rothka, a senior from Bentworth.
Cool, Calm and Collected: Oblock showed unusual poise for a freshman wrestling in a pressure match, first against McDermitt in the ultimate tiebreaker, then against Rothka. Both opponents are veteran wrestlers with a combined 124 wins coming into the season.
“I know that if I go out there and wrestle crazy, I’m going to make mistakes,” said Oblock. “If I make mistakes, then they are going to score on me.”
Oblock went 4-2 in the Powerade Christmas Tournament in December, losing to Alex Mackall of Walsh Jesuit, 4-1, one match shy of the medal round.
Oblock won a Junior Olympics title as a seventh-grader and finished fifth last year.
“He always wrestles a bunch of matches,” said C-M head coach Jason Cardillo. “I figured he would have a good transition to varsity. (Dalton) Macri always pushes him in practice.”
Macri is a state runner-up and has been a good teacher for Oblock.
“Matt hand-fights well,” Cardillo said. “He controls the wrestling. He’s a good rider and is always looking for turns. His attitude is great.”
Paintball: To get away from wrestling, Oblock likes to head out with his friends to Cecil to participate in paintball battles. His favorite spot is Urban Assault in McDonald.
Teams are formed, strategy planned, and winners and losers are decided. It’s just like wrestling, right?
“We battle whoever shows up,” said Oblock. “I’m pretty terrible at it. I always get shot up. But I go a lot.”
Compiled by Joe Tuscano