It was a horrible way to end a career. And what made it even worse was how successful that career had been.
On Friday afternoon at the PIAA Class AA Wrestling Championships at Hershey’s Giant Center, Northern Lebanon senior Luke Funck’s career officially ended when he forfeited his second-round consolation bout in the 182-pound weight class. Funck was forced to forfeit the match when he suffered a torn ligament in his left ankle a day earlier, 1:42 into his state opener against Myersdale senior Christian Hutzell.
Funck appeared to have the initial points of the bout with Hutzell 18 seconds in, but grimaced in pain as he attempted to take him to the mat. Funck battled through the pain before succumbing to it 1:24 later.
Funck entered the PIAA competition as the top-ranked Class AA wrestler at his weight and with a legitimate shot of winning only Lebanon County’s second state gold medal in the sport. Funck was making the third state wrestling appearance of his career, one that featured a fourth-place showing last season.
Funck, who plans to wrestle in college, finished his season with a 47-5 record, and his career with over 160 wins and over 100 pins. During his senior campaign, Funck won weight-class championships at the Southeast Regional tournament, the District Three Championships and the Lancaster-Lebanon League.
– Jeff Falk