Ciciarelli gives CNS sectional wrestling title

Four Cicero-North Syracuse wrestlers made it to the final round during Saturday's Section III Division I championships at Utica Memorial Auditorium - but only Dan Cicicarelli, at 103 pounds, made it to the top spot on the awards podium.

Ciciarelli, the top seed, improved to 34-5 on the season and, by doing so, the senior earned a trip to Albany's Times Union Center on Feb. 25-26 to compete for a state championship, all while his Northstars rose to a second-place tie in the Division I (large school) standings for the tournament.

First, Ciciarelli pinned Dan Fancett (New Hartford) with 20 seconds left in their quarterfinal. Then he got a second-period fall over Mexico's Theo Powers, earning a spot in the final, where Camden eighth-grader Garrett Mitchell awaited.

Mitchell proved quite tough, forging a 4-4 tie going into the third period. But Ciciarelli achieved a near-fall in that final period, accounting for three points, and held on for the 7-5 decision that produced a sectional championship.

CNS had three other wrestlers make it to the final round as part of an effort that produced 199 team points, the same as Indian River to share runner-up honors behind Fulton, who won with 233.5 points.

Tony Battista rose from a no. 3 seed at 119 pounds, pinning Austin Small (Mexico) in 1:27 and knocking off West Genesee's Ian Coolican 4-3 in a tense semifinal. But Battista could not keep up with Rome Free Academy's Antonio DeLuco in the finals, taking a 7-0 defeat.

Matt Mastro took a similar path to second place at 215 pounds. From a no. 3 slot, he held off Liverpool's Sean Munson 5-4 in the quarterfinals and needed an overtime takedown in the semifinals to beat Fulton's Derek Owen 4-2. Up against Indian River's Derrick Dalton in the finals, Mastro put up lots of points, but still lost a 19-10 decision.

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