| SUFFOLK COUNTY CHAMPIONSHIPS PREVIEW
By Jim & Tony Nordland
The team race at the 2010 Doc Fallot Suffolk County Wrestling Championships should be among John Glenn and Hauppauge, as both squads won their respective league tournaments and will send a contingent of quality wrestlers to the tournament. Other top teams that will be in the mix are League I champions Longwood (24-0), League II titlists Connetquot (12-0) and Rocky Point (18-2).
Defending team champion John Glenn (21-0) crowned six champions, including unbeatens, Nick Meinsen (25-0) at 130 and Nick Terdick (24-0, 126-11) at 152. Meinsen is defending Suffolk champion and Terdick was a 2009 state finalist. Other titlists for the Knights include Vin Punzone (21-1) at 112, all-county matmen; Matt Gannon (135) and Matt Fusaro (24-2) at 145, along with Suffolk runner-up Joe Giaramita (23-0) at 189 pounds. Glenn will send 19 qualifiers to the county meet.
Hauppauge (23-0) won their fifth consecutive league title and garnered seven winners, including undefeated freshman Mark West (27-0) at 96 and all-county performers Anthony Pisitello (140) and tough Jesse Marro (28-3, 134 career wins) at 145 pounds. Also claiming crowns for the Eagles were Michael Ehlinger (125), Adam Lepkowsky (130), Kevin Panebianco (31-3, 21 pins) at 135 and Gennaro Banaventura at 189. Two-time state placer and 2008 state king Ken Collado (29-4) was runner-up at 119 pounds. Hauppauge has 13 grapplers in the tournament.
Longwood (6 champions, 11 qualifiers) points to All-State returnees, Corey (103) and Malik (112), along with unbeaten and top-seeded Casey Brice (28-0) at 125 pounds. The Lions also have all-county performers, Nicky Hall (135) and Ben Lee at 285. Connetquot (5 champions, 14 qualifiers) has the McCabe brothers; sophomore Sean (31-2) at 112 and senior James (32-1) at 119, both are fourth-seeded in their respective weight classes. Other T-Birds to watch are Stephen Drew (130) and Nick LoBue (31-4) at 160. Rocky Point (6 champions, 10 qualifiers) boasts three All-State matmen, including reigning state king Stephen Dutton (40-0, 218-12) at 140, Anthony Volpe (36-1, 214-19) and Billy Coggins (38-1, 211-21) at 171. Other top Eagles are 7th-grader and league champion Tommy Dutton (36-3) at 103 and 2008 state placer Matt Ross (36-3, 171-19) at 125.
Other perennial powers include Brentwood (4 champs, 9 qualifiers), Sachem East (4 champs, 9 qualifiers) League III dual and tournament champions East Islip (6 champions, 14 qualifiers) along with Huntington and League IV champion Riverhead.
A quick glance at the top four seeded wrestlers and the weight classes:
96 pounds- 1.Mark West (Haup) 2.Conor O'Hara (SachEast) 3.TJ Fabian (SWR) 4.Tyler Walsh (WI). A tough quarterfinal bout could see O'Hara (32-0) vs Sayville's Matt Leshinger (25-8).
103 pounds- 1.Mike Soria (KP) 2.Corey Rasheed (Long) 3.Thomas Dutton (RPt) 4.Alan Gomez (CI). Defending state champion Mike Soria (29-0, 101-15) hopes that twin brother Max (29-2, 102-18) will reach the finals, Max could face Tommy Dutton in the quarterfinals.
112 pounds- 1.Nigel McNeil (Hunt) 2.Malik Rasheed (Long) 3.Vinny Punzone (JG) 4.Sean McCabe (Conn). Unbeaten McNeil (30-0) is the favorite here, a tough quarter bout could see Punzone vs Nick Mauriello (Haup).
119 pounds- 1.Damon McQueen (Hunt) 2.Alex Gomez (Brent) 3.Pete DeTore (WH) 4.James McCabe (Conn). This weight class is loaded. Possible finals could see McQueen (34-1) pitted against unbeaten junior Gomez (31-0). Former 2008 state champion Ken Collado is pitted against league OSW and county runner-up Pete DeTore in the quarterfinals, which is a rematch of the 112-pound county championship bout. Look for the OSW Award to come from this class.
125 pounds- 1.Casey Brice (Long) 2.Matt Ross (RPt) 3.Ryan Gerondel (SachNorth) 4.Mike DiLiello (EI). Some interesting quarter bouts could see Brice vs Connor Bass (WH), and in the bottom bracket, Gerondel vs Brentwood's Humberto Garcia.
130 pounds- 1.Nick Meinsen (JG) 2.Stephen Drew (Conn) 3.Adam Lepkowsky (Haup) 4.Dan Clancy (NB). Returning champ Meinsen is the clear favorite, looming in the top tier is Maurice Loadholt (Hunt) and Andrew Colamussi (Harb), while younger brother Kenny is in the bottom bracket, and could meet Lepkowsky in the quarterfinals.
135 pounds- 1.Steven Rojas (Brent) 2.Matt Gannon (JG) 3.Kevin Panebianco (Haup) 4.Joe Evangelista (Northport). A well balanced weight class with a lot of talent in the bottom bracket. Connor Gribbin (over 100 career wins) could meet Gannon in the quarterfinals. A tough opening bout with Brandon Cauchi (DP) vs freshman Nicky Hall (Long), the winner could face Panebianco.
140 pounds- 1.Stephen Dutton (RPt) 2.Edwin Perry (River) 3.Rashead Gray (BayShore) 4.Anthony Pisicitello (Haup). Three-time state placer Dutton (2-3-1) is the solid favorite here. Tough prelim has Anthony Powers (Mt.Sinai) against Sayville junior Steven Leshinger (29-8), with the winner to meet Perry in the quarterfinals.
145 pounds- 1.Andy Rodriguez (CI) 2.Jesse Marro (Haup) 3.Matt Fusaro (JG) 4.Ricky Renck (Long). Reigning state king Rodriguez (31-0,189-25) looks to repeat. Sayville senior Josef Haas (30-7) could meet Renck in a rugged quarterfinal battle, with the winner to face Rodriguez in the semis. Another possible semi-final clash could see Marro vs Glenn's Matt Fusaro.
152 pounds- 1.Nick Terdick (JG) 2.Kyle Wade (Islip) 3. Pat Jennings (Long) 4.Rich Lugo (DP). Both Terdick and Wade (30-0) are unbeaten returning state meet qualifiers, they could meet in a frenetic final on Saturday, with the winner to get a state seed and the other a wild card berth.
160 pounds- 1.Anthony Volpe (RPt) 2.Will Maldonado (WF) 3.Lou Puca (Hunt) 4.Nick LoBue (Conn).Glenn's Mike Bosco (24-2) could meet Puca (31-3) in the quarterfinals. Also in the bottom bracket is talented Matt Mazarakis (WH). Look for the rubber match between state bronze medalist Volpe and Bosco in the championship finals.
171 pounds- 1.Billy Coggins 2.Ryan Fox (Hunt) 3.Myles Buhner (River) 4.Nick Arma (EI). State placer Coggins is the favorite but will face formidable upper bracket challengers with all-county Frank Speights (WB), Chanse Menendez (Haup), Frank Merante (SachEast) and Arma.Tough quarterfinal skirmish could pit Jarid Cheatham vs Buhner, with the winner to meet Fox (33-1).
189 pounds- 1.Chris DiIorio (SachEast) 2.Joe Giaramita (JG) 3.Jake Smith (SmithWest) 4.Gennero Bonaventura (Haup). DiIorio (34-1) could face Peter Vivonetto (RPt) in the quarters. Tough opening draw pits AJ Hendrickson (PMed) vs Adrian Mack (BayShore) with the winner to face Smith.
215 pounds- 1. Steve Provenzano (Islip) 2.Byron Kesler (CI) 3.Carlos Hernandez (Brent) 4.Reggie Robinson (WB). Pretty much a wide-open class with a group of talented heavyweights. Top tier challenger is Rocco DeForca (Commack) and lodged in the bottom bracket is all-county Joe Bilello (DP), Nick Lupi (Hunt), Greg Martin (KP), and Miles Farrell (RPt).
285 pounds- 1.John Wilkinson (WB) 2.Ben Lee (Long) 3.Sean Walsh (Lind) 4.Andrew Slawson (EI). Three returning county medalists are here, Wilkinson, Lee and Walsh. Also in contention will be league champion Joe Manna (Islip), Anthony Puca (Hunt) and Christian Nelson of Sayville.
In the Division II Championships (starting in Center Moriches on Friday) the favorite is Bayport (20-6). Coach Rich Reilly, now in his seventh year, has top Phantom prospects with Ryan Hake (119), Kyle Underwood (125), highly-regarded Jeff Purdy (130) and Kasten Carter (171). Other top Div.II grapplers include Michael Menzer (103) of Center Moriches, Chris Bourguignon (112) of Port Jefferson, Rob Hoshlya (135) of Hampton Bays and Drew Allagi (152) of Babylon.
In Division I, the grueling marathon begins on Friday, February 12 at 10:00 AM, with the medal rounds and championship finals slated for Saturday morning. Many wrestling experts feel it will be tough on all the wrestlers, coaches, officials and parents. Please keep in the mind that they are only kids and Sportmanship should prevail. Let's enjoy the county championships, win or lose. Best of Luck to all the competitors...
|SUFFOLK COUNTY CHAMPIONSHIPS PREVIEW|
|Nick Terdick and Nick Meinsen will lead the charge for John Glenn at the Section XI Tournament held in the Stony Brook Field House starting Friday.|
|Stephen Dutton, Anthony Volpe, and Billy Coggins of Rocky Point.|
|Undefeated and defending New York State & Suffolk champion Andy Rodriquez of Central Islip looks to defend his crown at 145 pounds.|
|Max and Mike Soria of Kings Park.|
|Hauppauge's Ken Collado 2008 New York State Champion. (right)|