The first ever-wrestling event at Madison Square Garden captured a lot of headlines this weekend. While Cornell and Hofstra both went 0-2, Big Red senior Kyle Dake earned the Outstanding Wrestler Award after his victories over #3 Tyler Caldwell of Oklahoma State and #13 Zach Toal of Missouri. Dake controlled both matches, earning a reversal and riding time in each. Also going undefeated on the day for Cornell was returning NCAA champion Steve Bosak, who made his season debut. The 184-pounder picked up two victories against ranked opponents – #7 Mike Larson of the Tigers and #13 Chris Chionuma of the Cowboys.
Fans in attendance in New York City were able to watch some top level high school action in addition to the college duals as the placement matches of the PSAL Holiday tournament took place on Sunday at MSG as well.
Long Branch (NJ) took the team crown at the event, with champions at 138 (Nick Menkin), 145 (Nick George), 160 (Jake George) and 220 (Vincent Roselli). In second place was Section 2’s Columbia, followed by the PSAL’s Brooklyn Tech.
One of the most anticipated finals happened at 113 pounds where two-time state champion Kyle Kelly of Chenango Forks took on 2012 state runner up Cheick Ndiaye of Brooklyn International. Kelly jumped out to an early lead and looked like he might get the pin but Ndiaye fought his way back into the match. However, Kelly closed out a 6-4 victory in a battle between two wrestlers who will be among the top contenders at 113 in Albany in Division I and II, respectively.
Kelly’s teammate Jake Green captured first place in a challenging 126-pound field. Green topped Grand Street’s Keanu Thompson 4-2 in the title bout with multiple time All-American Travis Passaro of Eastport South Manor grabbing third. (Thompson defeated Passaro in Saturday’s semifinals).
Outstanding Wrestler honors went to Tottenville’s Santo Curatolo, who won at 120 pounds by first period fall. That was one of three quick pins for Curatolo in the event. His other victory was a 13-1 major.
The silver medal team from Columbia had a pair of champions, including heavyweight El Shaddai Van Hoesen, who pinned all four of his opponents and was only pushed into the second period once. His teammate Angelo Kress had a similar experience at 152 pounds – four matches and four falls.
The other champions were: John Busiello of Eastport South Manor (99), Noah Malamut of Poly Prep (106), Saidyokub Kahramonov of New Utrecht (132), Adis Radoncic of RKA (170), Matt Roberts of Monsignor Farrell (182) and Kevin Tynes of Brooklyn Tech (220).
For full brackets, see here.
Outside of New York City . . .
While the focus of many wrestling fans was on the Big Apple, there was plenty of quality wrestling featuring New York wrestlers around the state and even in the Pacific Time Zone. Here are a few notes from the weekend:
Wantagh saw its first dual action of the season at the David Bloom Memorial event. The Warriors went 4-0, defeating New Rochelle, Sachem North, East Islip and one of Rhode Island’s top squads, Cumberland.
In one of the significant results of the day, Wantagh’s 182 pounder James Corbett continued his strong start to the season with a 5-2 victory over Gio Santiago of Sachem North, the 2012 Suffolk County champion who was sixth at the state tournament. Corbett had a solid 32-6 season a year ago while wrestling at 160, 170 and 182 pounds and took fourth at the Section 8 tournament. Now 7-0 with five pins and a technical fall, he’ll be a wrestler to watch in the upperweights this season.
In a matchup of wrestlers with a great chance to travel to Albany in February, New Rochelle’s Nick Barbaria, an All-State wrestler at 99 pounds a year ago, picked up a quality win over NHSCA All-American Kyle Quinn, 5-3 at 113.
And Further Upstate . . .
Spencerport won the Batavia Christmas Tournament on Saturday by almost 30 points over Blairsville, Pennsylvania. Leading the way for Spencerport were champions Kaleb Pascoe (99), Brandon Barrett (113), Trent Englauf (182) and Collin Pittman (195). Elmira was third as Sean McGinley took first at 285 and Charlie Kennedy (120) and Curtis Grant (138) earned second. Royalton Hartland also made its presence felt with a trio of champions – Cameron Swick at 106, Drew Hull at 152 and Alex Jensen at 182.
The Alexander Green and Gold Tournament in Section 5 showcased a number of state title contenders. Warsaw won the event by a wide margin, with Rush Henrietta second and Fairport third.
Among the champions were All-State grapplers Corey Hollister of Perry (113), Dan Reagan of Lewiston Porter (145), Warsaw’s Burke Paddock (160) and Most Outstanding Wrestler (182) Tim Schaefer and Zack Bacon of Hornell (220). For more detailed results, see here.
Koll and Lapresi Impress In Pennsylvania . . .
Lansing took 23rd at the King of the Mountain tournament at Central Mountain High School in the Keystone State . . . and the Bobcats did it with only two wrestlers entered in the event. 2011 state champion Will Koll dominated his way to the 126 pound title, with pins in his first four bouts before notching a 7-4 decision over Ryan Easter in the championship match. 2012 state titlewinner Connor Lapresi made his mark at 138, putting up bonus points in his first four matches before dropping a 7-2 decision in the title bout.
Kelley, Porter Place at the Reno Tournament of Champions in Nevada
Two Section 2 schools, Shenendehowa and LaSalle, headed out West with a handful of their starters to meet some out of state competition at the Reno Tournament of Champions.
Leading the way for the New Yorkers was Nick Kelley, who took third place at 138 pounds. He began the event on a roll, winning his first four matches by fall, including an 16-second pin in his initial contest. In the semifinals, Kelley lost an 8-6 match in overtime, however, he came back to dominate his next bout 11-4 to take the bronze.
Also making the podium for the Plainsmen was Jesse Porter at 132 pounds. Porter entered the tournament as the 14th seed, but made an impressive run, winning his first two matches before dropping a 1-0 decision to eventual third place finisher Robbie Rizzolino of Easton, Pennsylvania. Porter responded with four victories in the wrestlebacks, including three pins. He won his seventh place tilt 5-2 over Zack Edwards of Broken Arrow High in Oklahoma.
Two Shenendehowa grapplers came within one victory of the medal stand, but took different paths to get there. 182 pounder Levi Ashley dropped his opening match to bronze medalist Ian Baker of California. However, he quickly rebounded, capturing five straight in the consolations before Brock Warren of Broken Arrow ended his run. Meanwhile, David Almaviva, the ninth seed, won his first two contests before losing to Tanner Bailey of Broken Arrow. He rallied with two wins in the wrestlebacks.
Zach Joseph went 3-2 for Shenendehowa at 152 pounds while Corey Ali (2-2) and Kevin Parker both took the mat at 120 for the Plainsmen. Freshman Joseph Clemente turned in a solid showing for LaSalle, with a 3-2 mark at 138 pounds while his teammates Mark Pelton (152), Paul Andreoli (152) and Eric Rider (126) also competed.
Shenendehowa took 21st place as a team in a field of more than 110 squads. Canon McMillan (PA) took the gold overall.
For the full Reno Tournament of Champions bracket, see here.
For more results from the weekend, see here.
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