PROSPECT PARK - With only 16 athletes on his roster, it doesn't take Interboro wrestling coach Dan Tobin long to jot down a lineup.
What the Bucs lack in numbers, though, they more than make up for in quality. Nine wrestlers have double-digit wins and six of those are underclassmen.
"We're that team you don't want to see at district duals," Tobin said. "We're good enough where we can upset somebody if we come with our A-game and if we have a full lineup, which we do. We can move people around, which we do. They're all around the same weight so we can move people around and get the better matchup."
Tobin did some lineup shuffling, and it paid off in a 42-27 nonleague victory over Central League co-leader Strath Haven Wednesday night.
The big switch was moving senior Jon "Bubba" Phillips from 195 to 220 pounds. His second-period pin of Joe Natale swung the momentum in Interboro's favor.
The Bucs trailed, 16-11, after Strath Haven's Anthony Crawford won by major decision, Koll Peichel recorded a pin at 182 and Gave Federico picked up a forfeit victory at 195.
Phillips took control of his match early and put Natale on his back 2:37 into the bout to put Interboro up 17-16. The Bucs never trailed again.
"My coach told me that I need to get six," Phillips said. "I was just trying to help my team out. I knew our team needed it. This was a big match for us and we knew Strath Haven was going to come and fight hard. We just had to fight harder."
Phillips' victory started a string of six wins in the next seven matches that put the Bucs (7-4) on path to knock off a Central League team for the third time this year. The Bucs beat rival Ridley, 55-16, in December and topped Garnet Valley, Haven's Central League co-leader, 36-35 in the quarterfinal round of the Rage in the Cage at Garnet Valley to open the new year.
"We have a really strong mentality," Phillips said. "We just want to work. We go in the wrestling room and give it all we got and we come out here and perform on the mat. We just go in the room and work as hard as we can. When we come on the mat we try to the best we can do and be the best man our coach asks us to be. That's how we get it done."
It's been that way all season.
"It all comes down to hard work," said senior Jerry Curran, who battled through a chronic bloody nose to pull out a 6-5 victory at 160 pounds that staked the Bucs to an early 11-0 lead. "We put a lot of hard work in the (wrestling) room, behind the scenes where nobody sees it. We'll be working when people are taking days off. Coach will call us to go on a run and we do it. We just put the work in and it's paying off."
In other nonleague action:
Haverford School 51, Peddie School 21 >> Back-to-back pins by Jay McDonnell (113) and Jac Campbell (120) got the Fords off to a good start in a match late Tuesday.
Sawyer Hoyt (160) and Jahmiel Jackson (195) also won by fall, while Sam Reisbord scored an 8-6 decision at 145 poudts.
In the Central League:
Garnet Valley 65, Springfield 9 >> The Jaguars won 12 of the 14 matches, eight by fall and two by major decision, to remain undefeated in the Central League.
Riley needed just 12 seconds to win his 138-pound match by fall. Chowdhury (113) and Laventure (285) recorded 24-second pins in their respective weight classes. Sam Kimmel 9132) and Arthur Odongo (152) also won by fall for the Royals.
Chichester 48, Penn Wood 12 >> Dymanique Jones needed just nine seconds to pin Penn Wood's Aya Gbapo at 145 pounds and lead the Eagles over the Patriots in a match that included five forfeits and four double forfeits.