Panthers pin Rams following Hall of Fame induction

John Rittenhouse, the first QCHS state champion in 1987, and Ed Dougherty, who began the wrestling program in 1959, make up the first Hall of Fame class.
Posted on 12/23/2021
John Rittenhouse, at left, was inducted in the new Wrestling Hall of Fame. At right is former coach Dave Evans.  By Gary Weckselblatt

On a special night for Quakertown Community High School wrestling, the Panthers easily knocked off archrival Pennridge, 50-15, while inducting their first member into the Wrestling Hall of Fame.

The five-time Suburban One League Liberty Division champions received pins from Zach Borzio, Gavin Carroll, Brandon Pierce, Freddie Retter, and Mason Ziegler, while Collin Gaj earned a technical fall.

Todd McGann had a thrilling 3-1 triumph in overtime, while Justin Adamson and Calvin Lachman also earned decisions. Jackson Benckert won by forfeit.

“Pennridge had three quality starters out,” Quakertown Coach Kurt Handel said. “We did a good job, and we have a kid at every weight class with experience, so I am pleased with the effort.”

John Rittenhouse, Quakertown’s first state champion wrestler in 1987, was honored with his induction into the new Hall of Fame. Ed Dougherty, who has passed away, is also part of the first Hall of Fame class. He began the wrestling program in 1959.

After graduating from Rider University, Mr. Rittenhouse became an assistant coach for Quakertown. He then went on to become the head wrestling coach at Pennridge.

Former Panthers’ coach Dave Evans, who preceded Coach Handel as coach, introduced Mr. Rittenhouse prior to the match, and handed him a plaque.

“We have such a deep and rich tradition,” said Coach Handel, who described Mr. Evans as “legendary.”

“We had so many alumni out here last night. It was an outstanding night for the entire wrestling program. We had a slew of guys from the 80’s and 90’s. It was pretty awesome to see the who’s who of oldtimers.”

Gary Weckselblatt, QCSD Director of Communications, writes about the people and the programs that impact the Quakertown Community School District. He can be reached at 215-529-2028 or gweckselblatt@qcsd.org.
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