Adam Busiello was competing in packed arenas before most other wrestlers even made their varsity teams.
Busiello showed unlimited potential as a youth wrestler and was introduced to the big stage as a sixth-grader at the prestigious Super 32 tournament at Greensboro Coliseum in North Carolina. Before he made his first appearance in a New York State title match he already had two middle-school Super 32 titles under his belt.
He hasn’t stopped winning since. The Eastport-South Manor junior now has three state titles and won his sixth Super 32 championship in October.
“Wrestling in the Super 32 really helped me prepare for wrestling in a big arena at states,” Busiello said. “Winning three times in high school is special but I try to just take each one as it comes. It’s very humbling.”
No wrestler has ever won four Super 32 titles in the high school division.
“That tournament has so many different implications,” Eastport-South Manor coach Nick Garone said. “He trains for that every year and tries to peak. It’s such a tough tournament and has such talent that it’s like winning a national title. All the preseason high-school rankings that come out are predicated on that tournament.”
It was easy for Garone, who has known Busiello since he was six, to realize he had something special.
“Sometimes when you’re at that age and level you’re doing basic stuff and just tougher or bigger and stronger,” Garone said. “But when you watched him as a youth wrestler he was doing things that were pretty jaw-dropping. When he was eight or nine years old he looked like he had been through a high-school season already.”
Busiello, who has wrestled at the lower weights, is looking to become just the fifth Long Island wrestler and the third from Suffolk to win four state titles. Among them is Long Beach senior Jacori Teemer, who could become the first to win five this season.
“I do think about the history of it,” Busiello said. “Those guys made their mark and I want to make my own. It would be really humbling to put my name next to theirs.”
Busiello does his best to not get too far ahead of himself as he ramps up his training to be in top form again in February for the county and state tournaments.
“All the great wrestlers are able to peak when it really counts,” Garone said. “It’s not just technique or talent, but learning how to make weight, learning how to peak — all those things are wrapped around the concept of who is the best. And he has it all.”
He went 47-1 last season and has a record of 195-8 in his four years on varsity.
“Sometimes I can’t even believe how old he is because you look at him and he’s so mature and has so much composure and poise like a college wrestler would,” Garone said. “He really is a phenom. If there’s any other word you can use for an athlete or a musician or someone in academics that can do special things — he’s that.”