Feb 10, 2013 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
Cazenovia wrestling senior Dylan Evans had a chance to deliver his program’s first Section III individual wrestling championship in 46 years, but fell just short of that elusive goal.
Not since 1967, when Lee Avery took the title at 103 pounds, had any Laker wrestler made it to the top of the awards podium, but Evans got that chance with an inspired performance at last Saturday’s sectional Division II meet at Onondaga Community College’s SRC Arena.
Working from a no. 4 seed in a 14-wrestler field, Evans nearly got surprised in the opening round by Copenhagen’s Breven Jacobs, but pulled out a 6-4 decision. The quarterfinal round proved a bit easier as Evans shut out Phoenix’s Brad Dietz 5-0.
The semifinal match appeared to be the biggest hurdle, Evans going up against the top seed, Canastota’s Nate Walker. For six minutes, the pair only managed a single escape apiece, leaving it to the second overtime, where Evans pulled off a reversal and recorded a 3-1 victory.
So now all Evans had to do was beat Cooperstown’s Mike Boyle in the championship match to end the Lakers’ long wait for a sectional champion. But Boyle executed a takedown and escape to move in front, 3-0, and Evans never caught up, settling for a 4-2 defeat.
This sectional run left Evans with an overall record of 36-7 and the hope that, perhaps, it would be good enough to earn a wild-card bid into the Feb. 22-23 state championship meet at Albany’s Times Union Center.
Elsewhere at the sectional meet, Nick Petroff, working from a no. 5 seed at 126 pounds, beat Will Young (Chittenango) 4-1 in the first round but lost in the quarterfinals to Cortland’s Zach Alexander. A 7-4 win over Tully’s Jon DeCarlo led to a spot on the podium, but two more defeats meant that Petroff (35-9) would settle for sixth place.
That was the Lakers’ only other podium finish. Dan Phillips, from the no. 5 seed at 182 pounds, pinned Codie Corso (Phoenix) in 1:19 in the first round before running into Taylor Short (Holland Patent) in the quarterfinals, where he lost 10-2. A 7-5 defeat to another Phoenix wrestler, Tim Gandino, kept Phillips out of the top six.
Mike Nourse (160 pounds) met Holland Patent’s Marc Grogan and took an 11-5 loss, while John Nannery (170 pounds), in that same round, fell 10-5 to General Brown’s Colton Erb.
Chittenango saw Matt Bixby (120) lose in the opening round to Dietz, who would later take a defeat to Evans. Tyler Lewis (145 pounds), Justin Cox (195 pounds) and Casey Placito (285 pounds) all had first-round defeats, too.
However, the Bears received a high honor just before the championship matches when the Syracuse Wrestling Officials Association gave them the John Arcaro Sportsmanship Award, given to a team that, through its entire organization (wrestlers, coaches, fans), demonstrates high standards of sportsmanship. Cazenovia received the Arcaro honor in 2005.