Coaches referred to the 113-pound weight class at the Suffolk wrestling tournament as a war zone. Eastport-South Manor coach Nick Garone called it the toughest class in this year’s Division I county championships at the Health Sports and Education Center at Suffolk CCC-Brentwood.
“The bracket is littered with outstanding talent,” Garone said. “We have two defending Suffolk champions and three county placewinners all wrestling for one crown. It’s a prime example of how deep the talent pool is in Suffolk County.”
Nine of Suffolk’s 10 defending county champions came through Saturday’s preliminary rounds unscathed and advanced to the semifinals. Navigating through the 113-pound bracket proved as difficult as anticipated.
Rocky Point’s Logan Sciotto upended defending county champion Christian Gannone of Eastport-South Manor by fall in 5:25 in a 113-pound quarterfinal. The two battled through two scoreless periods before the second-seeded sophomore patiently waited to work a double bar arm for the pin.
“I had to turn him to his back to get the win,” Sciotto said. “I kept working and staying in control in the third period.”
Midway through the final period, Gannone, who won the 99-pound title last year, began to slip out for the one-point escape but the well-timed move by Sciotto trapped Gannone’s arm and enabled Sciotto to run the double bar arm for the win.
“I had to be patient to turn him to his back,” said Sciotto, who improved to 44-3.
Top-seeded Dylan Ryder of Half Hollow Hills West, who earned the 106-pound crown last year, won by pin in 15 seconds and by major decision to advance into Sunday’s semifinal round at 9:30 a.m. at Suffolk CCC-Brentwood. Ryder will meet Chris Delisle of Islip in the semifinal.
Sciotto was one of five Rocky Point wrestlers to reach the semifinal round. The Eagles are tied for the lead for the team title with Brentwood with 76 points. Brentwood moved two wrestlers into the semifinals. Hauppauge and Eastport-South Manor have 69 points.
Only three of the top seeds were beaten in Saturday’s early rounds. The 220-pound bracket was turned inside out as the top two seeds lost. Top-seeded Tahirhan Ozturk of Lindenhurst lost a 3-2 triple-overtime thriller to Midjerry Paul of Longwood in the quarterfinals. And second-seeded Christian Holder of Glenn was beaten by Patchogue-Medford’s Dylan Gianikos, 11-3, in the round of 16. Paul and Gianikos both advanced into the semifinal round.
Unseeded Andrew Maiorini earned his way into the 99-pound semifinals against Kings Park’s Thomas DiResta. Maiorini won three bouts from an outbracket position, including an 11-3 win over second-seeded Gavin McIntyre in the quarterfinals.
“You never know which guy is coming out of the outbracket with a great first day of wrestling in the county tournament,” said Bob Panariello, the assistant Suffolk wrestling chairman. “But it happens every year. Nothing is a given in this tournament.”
Some would argue that Eastport-South Manor junior Adam Busiello, who is looking for his fifth Suffolk championship, is a lock to win the 126-pound weight class. The three-time state champion pinned his opponents in 1:00 and 1:30 to advance.
“I don’t look beyond anyone,” Busiello said. “I go out and score as many points as I can. It’s always one match at a time.”