High School Wrestling

Step onto the mat with Newsday's high school writers as they cover Long Island wrestling.

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Plenty of action right off the bat

Mike Soria of Kings Park tries to get

Mike Soria of Kings Park tries to get a take down before going out of bounds during his opening round 103 lb. match against Joe Barbato of Wantagh at the NYS Wrestling tournament in Albany, N.Y. (Feb. 26, 2010) (Credit: Photo by Pat Orr Photography.com)

Day 2 has started off with a bang.

At 96 pounds, Mark West of Hauppauge, the Suffolk champ, narrowly edged Nassau champ Mark Raghunandan of Long Beach, 7-2.

Then at 103, it was the Soria brothers' turn. Mike Soria (pictured) won his wrestleback 6-0 of Fox Lane's Sam Speno. But in the semifinals, Max was pinned by Wayne's Al Dierna.

He led 3-1 in the third period, but was taken to his back off a scramble and pinned with 51 seconds left. So guess what? After all the talk of an all-Soria final, they're paired up in the consolation semifinals.

I doubt they'll wrestle. Mike will likely forfeit to Max and they'll try to go for fifth and third place, respectively.

In the other 103-pound semifinal, Wantagh's Joe Barbato, who beat Mike Soria yesterday in the quarterfinals, drove Chris Brienza of St. Anthony's to his back with a half nelson and locked up a headlock for the pin at the 3:48 mark.

At 112, it'll be a rematch of the Suffolk final, as Longwood's Malik Rasheed pinned Tim Schaefer of Lancaster in 2:15 with a cradle and Huntington's Nigel McNeil earned a 12-10 decision over Brian Realbuto from Somers.

And at 119, we'll see St. Anthony's Grant Greene, a 9-7 winner over Billy Watterson of John Jay-Cross River, take on Huntington's Damon McQueen, who defeated Mike Gentilcore from Olympia, 8-2. If you didn't know McQueen had won, you'd certainly hear it from his loud cheering section.

Greene, a defending state champ, is the top seed in the weight class, while McQueen is the No. 2 seed.

Quite an eventful start to the day, and there's plenty more to come, so stick with us throughout the day.