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Portville Wrestling Repeats As CCAA II Champions

Cover photo courtesy of Portville Wrestling

After a ten-year title drought that ended in 2018-2019, the Panthers wrapped up their second straight unbeaten season in league duals to claim the division title with a win at home on Wednesday night.

The WNY #6 small school Panthers cruised to a 76-4 victory over the visiting Cattaraugus-Little Valley Timberwolves, completing another 6-0 season in Chautauqua-Cattaraugus Athletic Association Division II matches. Portville improved to 20-2 overall this season with the win.

“We’re trying to keep on the path that has put us here,” said Panthers head coach Matt Milne reflecting on the hard work it has taken on the part of everyone involved in the Portville wrestling program’s on going revitalization. “Keeping all three of our programs (youth, modified, and varsity) together and keeping in communication with one another is important for us. It’s a small community here already, but we’re tied into it really well. That is a big plus for us: that we are a tight knit, close community in which everyone knows each other. It helps a ton.”

Coach Milne and the Panthers scored 52 or more points in all six of their league duals this season, led by sophomore standout Dakota Mascho (32-1) and junior Jayden Lassiter (32-3).

As evidenced especially in the last two seasons, a big piece of the Panthers’ success has been due in large part by simply having a full lineup with rare forfeits in duals. With a 2019-2020 BEDS number of 247, Portville is the smallest, non-combined school in WNY that features a full lineup of all Portville athletes.

“It’s one of our biggest successes,” said Milne on the benefit of a ‘full-fifteen.’ “We’re showing up with full lineups, compared to other teams that are not. That helps us tremendously in that sense, when we can show up with a full team and be competitive that way. Do I want to see us get to that next level now? Absolutely. I want to get to the point where we are beating some of the other good teams in our area…I’ve got some good plans.”

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