Solvay/Westhill's wrestling team proved to be a major player during the Jan. 3 Port Byron Invitational, finishing fourth with 165 points, just behind OHSL Liberty rivals Cazenovia (171 points) and Hannibal (167 points) as North-Rose Wolcott, from the Section V ranks, won with 226 points.
Three different times, the Bearcats earned victories. J.T. Romagnoli took a hard-fought 103-pound final over Clyde Cary (Addison) 5-4.
At 130 pounds, Aaron Benedict won when he pinned Josh Rodriguez (North Rose-Wolcott) with 27 seconds left in their match. Tom Bradley (215 pounds) earned another tournament crown when he beat Cazenovia's Clancy Kemp 15-6.
Zach Anderson (145 pounds) and Mike Warne (152 pounds) both finished second, beaten by Josh Belmeier (North Rose-Wolcott) and Jeff Clark (Marcus Whitman), respectively, in second-period pins.
Ian Rogers took fourth place at 140 pounds, just as Riley Delaney (96 pounds) beat Vinnie Hickling (Hannibal) with a third-period pin for fifth place. Matt Berkery (112 pounds), Mitch Anthony (135 pounds) and John Racciatti (189 pounds) each had sixth-place efforts.
Three days later, Solvay/Westhill had to face Cazenovia head-to-head, and the OHSL Liberty division leaders beat the Bearcats by a score of 40-17.
This came even though the Bearcats won five different matches. Bradley, in a rematch with Kemp, prevailed again, this time in a 10-2 decision, while Warne nearly got a shutout, beating Joe Szalmaczynski 8-1.
Benedict kept up his hot streak with a 10-4 victory over Adam Lockwood, just as Rogers matched Bradley with his own 10-2 win over Dan Cossitt. Anthony fought past Dylan Perry 7-3.
By contrast, Cazenovia earned four different pins that, by themselves, meant more points. Romagnoli was close in his 103-pound match, falling to Brad Nardella 8-6.