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Lindenhurst’s Sims twins wrestle their way to top in Suffolk

Max Sims from Lindenhurst wins the semi-final match

Max Sims from Lindenhurst wins the semi-final match at 160 pounds against Bobby Pease from Patchogue-Medford in the Suffolk side of the Suffolk and Nassau High School wrestling individual championships at the David S. Mack Arena in Hempstead, New York on Feb. 14, 2016. Credit: Patrick E. McCarthy

Once they started wrestling in the second grade, twins Billy and Max Sims fell in love with the sport. As they grew through the years — always staying close enough in size to be training partners — so did their passion.

Ten years later, both are top-ranked at their weights in Suffolk — Billy at 152 and Max at 160 — and the Lindenhurst seniors are looking to conclude their journey with a successful trip to the state tournament.

Both brothers showed their skills by winning their respective weight classes at the Lindenhurst tournament on Saturday. Billy, named the most tournament’s most outstanding wrestler, won 11-2 over Nick Pedersen of Copiague. Max won 5-3 over Deer Park’s Justin Perez.

“They’ve both really stepped their games up,” Lindenhurst coach Ron Frole said. “This is the second year they’ve been captains and their leadership has really helped the team as a whole.”

They’ve had a taste of success — they both finished second at last year’s county tournament and earned wild-card entries into the state tournament — but are looking to take it a step farther this season.

“We worked out all summer and I think I’ve really improved my strength,” Max said. “I also think I just need to be mean and confident out on the mat. I was too much of a nice guy last season.”

Billy agreed that being stronger mentally will be key.

“Honestly you just need to have a mindset that no matter who you’re wrestling you have to give 100 percent,” Billy said.

If they can make it back to the county final this season they’d be wrestling back-to-back again, just like they’ve been doing in the wrestling room in their garage for years.

“They work really hard together and their best partners are each other,” Frole said. “They always want to one up each other.”

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