ALBANY - I am back at the Times Union Center for the 50th NYSPHSAA Wrestling Championships, and unlike last year, I did not have to brave a snowstorm while arriving to the arena... so I'm off to a good start and ready for hour after hour of wrestling coverage. The first round of the tourney is starting at 10 a.m., and I will be here to give you constant updates on how the Long Island-area wrestlers are faring.
99- Whitman's Joe Calderone (38-3) dropped a 6-3 decision to New Rochelle's Nick Barbaria. A second-period reversal broke a 3-3 tie, and Calderone could do little to narrow the deficit in the third.
Wantagh's Joe Rodriguez scored a pin in 1:02 over Grand Street Campus' Josh Antoine to improve to 43-0.
West Babylon's Steven Lee (38-5) knocked off no. 2 seed Jon Haas Spencerport via 3-2 decision.
106- Top seed Nick Piccininni of Ward Melville pinned Fairport's Bryan Ruggeri in 2:36.
Leading 11-9, Freddy Dunau of St. Anthony's flipped opponent Michael Parise of Brewster off a headlock and scored the dramatic pin at 5:45.
113- In the first shocker of the day, the top seed and previously unbeaten Mark Raghunandan (42-1) of Long Beach dropped a 5-3 decision to Kennmore West's Ron Duguay. Raghunandan placed second at last year's tournament and was considered a frontrunner to take home a state championship.
Kellenberg's Pat Skinner (38-2) lost a 13-9 decision to Hilton's Vincent DePrez, who improves to 47-0. Meanwhile, Robert Person of Bellmore JFK scored a pin and will face Duguay in the quarters.
Huntington's Corey Jamison, the second seed, lost a 3-2 decision to Chenango Forks' Jake Green. Green was called for stalling late in the third, but Jamison could not score the match-winning takedown.
At 113, Long Island went 1-3, including losses from the top two seeds.
120- In match pitting the Nassau and Suffolk champions, Sayville's John Leshinger (40-5) scored an overtime reversal to take a 7-5 decision from Roslyn's John Lanzillotti (37-2).
SWR'S TJ Fabiann (44-4) scored a pin at 2:54 against Shenendehowa's Zach Joseph and will face Connetquot's Sean McCabe (38-2) in the second round. McCabe defeated Queensbury's Casey Jones, 10-1, in his opening match. McCabe placed third in Suffolk after losing in the quarters but battlled his way to third through the wrestlebacks.
126- Central Islip's Giovanni Sanchez lost 9-8 to Columbia's Matt Greene, while Garden City's Matt Lofrese scored late takedown and back points to win a 9-6 decision over North Rockland's Matt Caputo. ESM's Maverick Passaro advanced with an techincal decision, 19-4, against Lansingburgh's Drew Oligney.
132- Freeport's Maurice Irby lost via technical fall, 17-2, to Lancaster's Eric Lewandowski. Lewandowski will wrestle St. Anthony's Jamel Hudson in the quarters. Hudson made short work of Elmira's Curtis Grant with an eight-second pin.
Hauppauge's Nick Mauriello held on for a 4-3 decision over Columbia's Brendan Morgan.
138- Top seed Dan McDevitt of Wantagh advanced with a 5-0 decision against Monsignor Farrell's Tim McCann.
Brentwood's Alexis Blanco (44-2) moved on with a 7-2 decision over Newark Valley's Trevor Hossmier.
Glenn's Jame DeKrone won a 7-0 decision against Jamesville-DeWitt's Aaron Benedict. If both DeKrone and McDevitt win their quarterfinal matches, they will meet in tomorrow's semis. Longwood's Malik Rasheed won a 7-1 decision in his first-round match, giving LI a 4-0 record at 138.
145- Mepham's Louis Hernandez lost a 5-4 decision to Rush-Henrietta's John Northrup, giving up the go-ahead reversal with 15 seconds left in the match.
Longwood's Corey Rasheed used a cradle to pin Malone's Ryan Spinner in 36 seconds. On the same side of the bracker, Sachem East's Anthony Pistone lost a 5-2 decision to Warwick Valley's Kyle Wierzbicki.
152- SWR's John Keck (45-2) beat Nassau chammpion Dan Tracy of Mepham, 7-1. Longwood's Nicky Hall looked solid in downing Columbia's Angelo Kress, 5-2. Hall will face St. Anthony's Matt Szilagyi in the quarters. Szilagyi advanced with a 9-2 decision over Johnson City's Greg Kleinsmith.
160- Dylan Palacio just keeps on dominating, taking down Mike Garrison of Amsterdam with a 17-2 technical fall. The man Palacio defeated in the county final, MacArthur's Joe Cataldo, pinned Canton's Cody Dominque in 1:42.
Johnny Vrasidas of St. Anthony's got pinned in 4:25 by Fulton's Nick Woodworth, while SWR's Zak Mullen earned a 6-2 decision over Grand Street's Jorge Jiminez. Mullen will face Cataldo in the quarters... fortunately for the winner of that match, they will not have to wrestle Palacio in the semis, since he is on the other side of the bracket.
Hills West's Tyler Grimaldi won his match with a 12-0 MD and, if he wins his quarterfinal match, will face the Mullen-Cataldo winner in the semis.
170- Dan Spurgeon improved to 47-0 with an efficient 7-0 decision over Queensbury's Mike Hewitt, while Longwood's Dylan Seybold wona 6-5 decision from Jamestown's Jacob Gullo.
182- John Luxmore (37-3) was pinned in 1:37 by Vestal's James Benjamin, the third time this season he's been pinned. The man he beat for the Nassau title, Syosset's Dan Choi, fell to Sachem North's Gio Santiago, 3-1. Santiago
Glenn's Nick Bellanza scored a pin in 1:57 over Monsignor Farrell's Matt Roberts
Plainedge's Andrew Jones, trailing 5-4 in the final seconds, notched a takedown in the last second to upend Valley Central's Billy Hasan.
195- Sewanhaka East's Rob Zorn won via 7-3 decision over Monsignor Farrell's Richard Sisti. Zorn held a 5-3 lead in the final seconds of the third period and scored a takdown to take the four-point win.
Islip's Zac Conner advanced with a 7-0 decision over Kingston's Dean Edmond.
220- Commack's David Rubino pinned Uniondale's Andrew Cole at 5:52-- it was a 4-3 match until late in the third period.
Miller Place's Ryan Kelly lost via techincal fall to Johnson City's Reggie Williams, 17-2. Huntington's scored an escape in the ultimate tiebreaker to beat Somers' Dom Devita.
285- Smithtown West's Michael Hughes lost, 6-4, to Union-Endicott's Tyler Bayer. Hughes trailed 5-0 heading into the final period but could not even the score following an early third period takedown.
Evan Kappatos of Syosset defeated Kingston's Seth Stauble, 7-2 in the second overtime, notching a takedown and three back points with the clock running down. He will face Bayer in the quarters.
Uniondale's Dante Salkey scored a pin in 48 seconds, and if both he and Kappatos win their quarterfinal matches, there would be a rematch of the Nassau final in the state semis.
99- Tanzman pinned Lee to become the first Long Islander to qualify for the state semis. Rodriguez scored a echincal fall over Minisink Valley's Gerard Daly, 17-2.
106- Krishna Sewkumar moved on to the semis with a 1-0 win over Massena's Nathan Marshall.