LONG ISLAND TEAM PREVIEW
By Jim & Tony Nordland
Brentwood HS could be the top team on Long Island and hopes to improve on their third place finish at the 2007 Suffolk Championships. Coach Ralph Napolitano has the Indians primed to capture the county crown, a title they last claimed in 1977, as then Brentwood Ross HS. Look for county medalists; Alex Gomez (112), Ricardo Gomez (119) and Jahsua Marsh (215), along with Jonathan Murray (112), Wilson Cardozza (130), Mike Hernandez (160), Josue Mendez (171) and senior David Manzueta at 189 pounds. Another frontrunner squad is Hauppauge HS, they boast a balanced lineup and will be led by sophomore state finalist Stephen Dutton (98-10 career mark) at 130, along with four all-county grapplers, the Collado brothers, Ken (103) and Keith (140), Jon Senese (145) and Dave McGarry at 215. Coach Chris Messina and the Eagles also point to freshman Adam Lepkowsky (96), Austin Schneider (160) and Scott Munro at 285 pounds. Nassau Tournament runnerup Plainedge HS will be paced by county finalists, seniors Matt Rich (119) and Rocky Cervini at 140. Coach Rob Shaver and assistant Peter Marques also point to county bronze medalist Jesse Sgaglione (125), along with John Makastchian (171) and Steve Speranza at 285 pounds. If Plainedge can't secure their first ever county title, look for strong challenges to come from MacArthur HS and Wantagh HS. MacArthur HS has won six Nassau County Championships (2001-2006) and veteran coach Howie Greenblatt, now in his 22nd season will have the Generals ready for the task. Three all-county matmen will provide a strong nucleus, Alex Grant (96), Sean Kempf (112) and John Cataldo (135), along with Brian Herold (140),Tyler Dunne (145), Brandon Mulholland (152), Anthony Macaluso (171) and Anthony Daly at 189 pounds. Wantagh HS and second year coach Jim Murphy have two-time state champion Paul Liguori (47-0, 140-12), a junior who will compete at 125 pounds this season. Other Warriors to watch are defending county champion and state place-winner Steven Bonanno (135), county finalist John Greisheimer (100 career wins) at 145, along with Paul Friscia (119), Quimes DelaCruz (130), Matt Loew (171) and senior Dan Henig at 215 pounds. Perennial Suffolk powers Longwood HS and Huntington HS will be atop the Suffolk Championships this season. Longwood HS returns four county medalists, Patrick Jennings (112),Victor Goady (125), Will Fechter (140) and Daren Feliciano (160). The Lions also point to Malik Rasheed (96), Nicky Hall (103), junior Will Parks (171) and Ernest James at 215 pounds. Huntington HS has returning county champion and state bronze medalist senior Jose Vasquez (103) and all-county Francisco Pereira at 119. Legendary coach Lou Giani, enters his 40th season and the Blue Devils have outstanding lightweights, sophomore Damon McQueen (96) and freshman Nigel McNeil (103), along with Anthony Lupi (160) and senior Dashaun Thomas at 285 pounds. Other top teams in Suffolk will be defending team champion Islip HS, Rocky Point HS, Walt Whitman HS, Mt. Sinai HS, Sachem East HS, West Islip HS, and Division II power John Glenn HS (now a Div. I school). Islip HS has 2006 county champion and state medalist Jake Benedetto (119), along with county place-winner John LaMonica (135), and a group of talented underclassmen. Coach Joe Patrovich, now in his 12th season, hopes the young Bucs can mature by tournament time and points to the trio of Dan Gregg (103), Troy Mashkow (112) and freshman Kyle Wade (130), along with junior Matt Egan at 152. Rocky Point HS will field a strong squad and will be led by defending county champion Brandon Escobar at 112. He placed third at the state meet and will be a solid contender for state gold in 2008. Coach Darren Goldstein also has all-county freshman Matt Ross at 96, a pair of sophomores, Anthony Volpe (135) and Billy Coggins (145), along with Jerry Cecio (140), Lou Volpe (215) and Matt Clarke at 285 pounds Walt Whitman HS has the Troy brothers, returning county winner and state medalist Adam, a sophomore at 125, and senior Rob at 140, along with Vin Punzone at 103. Mt.Sinai HS has the Powers brothers, Mike (140) and Ray (145), along with Jon Hoeg (119) and senior Garrett Yablonski at 189 pounds. Sachem East HS has a balanced attack and will be paced by the O'Malley brothers, Sean (112) and Dan (119) along with Steve Nguyen at 130. Coach Sean O'Hara also looks to John Rocha (145) and the Dilorio brothers, Pat (152) and Chris at 160 pounds. West Islip HS has all-county Patrick Bell at 171, along with senior Sean Messina (125), Anthony Bacchi (145), Steven Smith (152) and Alex Fernan at 215 pounds. John Glenn HS returns Division II state place finisher Mike Castellano at 135, along with talented sophomore Nick Meinsen (103), Tyler Sinsigalli (119) and Chris Carlucci at 152 pounds. Connetquot HS and veteran coach Bill Santoro point to county medalist James Cameron (112) for leadership, along with a group of potential county place-finishers.The Thunderbirds have James McCabe (103/112), James Corsitto (135), Mike Valentin (145) and Davin Okerbloom at 160 pounds. Sayville HS has two potential Suffolk champions with county finalist Travis Pitre, a sophomore at 135 and all-county senior Shawn Mazzarone at 152 pounds. Coach Gary Pesko and the Golden Flashes look to TJ Slevin (119), Josef Haas (125), Dan Mellynchuck (145) and Tim Clemente (171) to keep them competitive in both the league and the county. Sachem North HS has Billy Hamilton (130), Brian Arons (145) and Bryan Fletcher at 152. Coach Ray Pickersgill also points to junior Nick Ciafone as a contender at 285 pounds. Deer Park HS has county bronze medalist, senior Joey Nunez at 135, Eric Weiner (112), along with the Lugo brothers, Rich (140) and Chris at 171 pounds. Commack HS points to Greg Fiorvanti at 160 pounds, along with Cougar standouts, Nick Smith (125) and Justin Constantos at 171 pounds. Copiague HS has all-county Christian LaPersonerie at 140, along with Ronnie Hicks (119) and tough Randy Marine at 160 pounds. Westhampton HS has two all-county matmen, sophomore Peter DeTore (103) and potential finalist Paul Dilandro (152). Also to watch are freshman Conner Bass (96) and Cory Hubbard at 119. Central Islip HS has sophomore county runnerup Andy Rodriguez at either 130 or 135 pounds, along with all-county Jean Oliver at 145 pounds. Miller Place HS returns county finalist Carl Korpi (215) and a trio of outstanding upperweights; Alex Martocello (160), Kyle Minogue (171) and junior Zach Buonaiuto at 189 pounds. Bayport-Blue Point HS returns all-state senior Glenn Donatelli at 112, along with other Phantom standouts, 7th grader Ryan Hake (96), Tim Dooley (130) and talented Kevin Edward at 145 pounds. Shoreham-Wading River HS has reigning state king junior Steven Keith (98-13 career mark) at 112 pounds, along with all-county junior,TJ Neidhart at 145 pounds. Defending Nassau team champion East Meadow HS will be hard pressed to capture a second county crown but returns a solid contingent of lightweights. Veteran coach John Hamilton is now at the helm and will have the Jets ready to challenge the elite teams. He points to county finalist Jimmy Pannullo (112) and all-county matmen Cory Krimmer (119), Steve Conway (152) and Dan Germann at 160. Uniondale HS returns county bronze medalist Lesean Mack, a junior at 152/160 pounds. Coach Tim Godoy, now in his 13th season, also has top prospects in Mike Walker (125),Troy Sterling (135), Andre Berry (140), Conroy Love (152) and Ismael Cerezo at 285. Massapequa HS is always a top ten team and this season they could finish in the top five at the Nassau Championships. Second year coach Joe Catalanotto returns two county champions, Mike Doria (130) and state medalist Shane Strumwasser at 135, along with Eric Kaufman (119), Anthony Evangelista (125), Josh Maddock (140) and Chris Petrik at 145 pounds. Syosset HS landed in sixth place at the county meet and return two county champions, sophomore Nick Arujau (119) was a state finalist and junior Danny Arnel (112) finished in sixth place. Coach Jamie St. John and the Braves also point to Brian Chimon (130) and Matthew Cho at 215 pounds. Baldwin HS has defending county champion Kerron Williams at 160, along with all-county grapplers, Vin Pecora (103) and Will Quinn at 145. Other Bruins to watch are Tim White (140) and Vin Famularo at 152 pounds. Chaminade HS will be seeking their 16th CHSAA Championship this season and coach George Dlugolonski, now in his 35th season, will have the Flyers ready to defend their title. They are led by two returning CHSAA finalists, Ryan Neugebauer (103) and sophomore Troy Sampson at 125, along with Pat Preziosi (140) and Joe Maggio at 171 pounds. Look for a strong challenge from rival St. Anthony's HS, and the Friars look to Division II state finalist, Grant Greene, a freshman transfer from Cold Spring Harbor, now at 112 pounds. Other top matmen include Ricky Randazzo (130), Mike Impellizeri (135), Joe Calderone (140) and CHSAA finalist Patrick Fiorvanti, a junior at 152 pounds.