Feb 13, 2011 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
In just its second season, the combined CBA/Jamesville-DeWitt wrestling team can proudly boast having a pair of Section III champions.
J.T. Romagnoli and Aaron Benedict earned the honors during last Saturday’s sectional Division I (large school) meet at Utica Memorial Auditorium – Romagnoli at 130 pounds, Benedict at 140 pounds.
Entering the meet, Romagnoli was the no. 2 seed at 130, this despite a 30-5 record and his victory (and Most Outstanding Wrestler honors) at the Feb. 5 sectional Class AA championships.
Soon enough, Romagnoli made his way to the top. After holding off Mike Madonia (Rome Free Academy) 4-1 in the quarterfinals and topping C.J. Loomis (Mexico) 8-2 in the semifinals, Romagnoli faced the top seed, Camden’s Cody Sullivan, in Saturday night’s title match.
They were scoreless until the second period, when Romagnoli earned a one-point escape. Then, with a third-period takedown of Sullivan, Romagnoli gave himself an extra cushion, and he went on to win 3-0 and grab the top spot on the podium.
As for Benedict, he did have the top seed at 140, having gone 30-1 this winter. Three more wins would be added here, though not without some late suspense.
Easy wins over Baldwinsville’s Anthony Rafkis (13-2) and Fulton’s Devon Viscome (7-0) led to a final against Mexico’s Kyle Sikes. In the first period, Benedict slammed Sikes a split-second after the whistle, causing a long injury time-out. The match looked to be over.
But Sikes roared back, nearly pinning Benedict in the second period and moving ahead 6-1. Staying patient, Benedict worked his way back late in that frame, then used an escape and takedown to move in front in the third period and win a 9-6 decision.
Both Romangnoli and Benedict will represent Section III in the Feb. 25-26 state championships at Albany’s Times Union Center.
Fayetteville-Manlius got a fine effort from Tom Quinlan at 135 pounds. He beat CBA/J-D’s Ben Honis 7-4 in the quarterfinals and, after losing his semifinal to Fulton’s Adam Wallace (the eventual champion), he beat Akira Reid (Whitesboro) and edged Indian River’s Tyler Brown 4-3 for a third-place finish.
Honis eventually finished fifth after Reid had to default. Also for CBA/J-D, Arsen Bugaryian (103 pounds) lost in the quarterfinals to Theo Powers (Mexico) in a 5-0 decision.
The Hornets’ Ryan Kiggins also finished third, at 145 pounds. He pinned Avery Sigle (Central Square) in the first round and Jordan Berry (Indian River) in the quarterfinals before taking a tough 3-2 defeat to Baldwinsville’s Antonio Peck in the semifinals.
Unfazed, Kiggins turned around and beat East Syracuse-Minoa’s Brendan O’Donnell 13-3 in the consolation bracket and got to third when he edged Cicero-North Syracuse’s Kiel Dyer 1-0. O’Donnell took sixth place and CBA/J-D’s Mark Friske lost in the first round.
Josh Scalzetti, from a no. 5 seed at 125 pounds, pinned Kyle Parella (East Syracuse-Minoa) and edged New Hartford’s Sean McKenna 9-6 to reach the semifinals before the eventual champion, Whitesboro’s Mike Sardo, beat him 9-3. Scalzetti would still beat Derek Harris (Fulton) 11-3 to secure fifth place.
For ESM, Jon Britton had the best finish, winning twice in the consolation bracket on his way to fourth place. F-M also had Paddy Quinlan (112) reach the quarterfinals before falling to APW’s Kevin Vold 7-0. Sam Wells (285 pounds) had an 11-1 quarterfinal loss to Liverpool’s Pat Carroll-Marsh.
The Hornets’ Eric Mohr (103) lost in the first round, as did Tyler Neveldine at 152. CBA/J-D’s Ryan Van Patten (171) and Zach Shapiro (189) lost in the first round. ESM’s Rich Osborne (171) did the same.