Much has changed for the Baldwinsville wrestling team – except, of course, the desire to attain collective and individual glory by the time the 2011-12 season is done.
Tony Burkinshaw is the new head coach, replacing Ken Brown. Burkinshaw, a Jordan-Elbridge graduate, has mat credentials, as he won the 1995 Section III championship at 105 pounds while wrestling for the Eagles.
Now Burkinshaw inherits a roster of nearly 40 wrestlers, including veteran talents like Chad McArdell, Pat Nasoni, Kevin Paul and Tim Sposato, all of whom had high finishes in last February’s sectional meet in Utica.
B’ville tested itself right away, opening the season last Wednesday night at Holland Patent. The Golden Knights, a long-time power in the Tri-Valley League, would come out on top, edging past the Bees 39-29.
This meet also displayed the other main change this season – a shift in weight classes. There are still 15 divisions, but every category other than 285 pounds was adjusted up or down by a few pounds, forcing a slight adjustment for the competitors.
For example, 215 pounds got changed to 220, and that’s where the meet started here. Brian Honsinger got the first win of the season for B’ville, shutting out HP’s Ryan Crego 7-0.
The Golden Knights won the next three matches, including Kevin Paul (106 pounds) falling to Alex Herringshaw 4-1, before Sposato, at 113 pounds, claimed a forfeit. Right after, at 120, Jabr Bengabr earned a technical fall over Erick Ward at the four-minute mark.
HP clinched the meet by taking the next five matches, three of them in close decisions. At 138 pounds, Jacob Norton fell to Todd Stevens 8-7, while at 145 pounds Brian Rush absorbed a 10-7 defeat to Ed Knamm and Steve Petrelli (152 pounds) lost to Marc Grogan 10-8.
B’ville did win the last two matches, though, as Joe Nasoni, at 182 pounds, pinned Barrett Joseph in 1:43 and Pat Nasoni, at 195 pounds, also needed 1:43 to finish off Brandon Lake.