Baldwinsville wrestlers Kevin Paul and Brian Honsinger fell into two categories as they went to Albany’s Times Union Center for last weekend’s state Division I championship meet.
Paul was there for the second time, hoping to reach the podium at 120 pounds, while Honsinger had capped a remarkable comeback from a back injury to reach the state meet for the first time in the 220-pound division.
In his opening-round match on Friday morning, Paul ran up against Ossining’s Alex Delacruz, the Section I champion, and almost got pinned in the first period, falling behind 7-1.
The rest of the match followed the same pattern, Paul only managing a couple of escapes but preventing Delacruz from getting a technical fall as it ended with a 16-2 defeat.
As it turned out, it was just the beginning for Delacruz, who would go all the way to the state Division I title at 120, winning an 11-7 championship match over Lancaster’s Steven Michel.
That opening-round defeat put Paul into the consolation bracket, where he met Luke Deprez (Hilton, Section V). The match was much closer, but Deperez still pulled out a 4-2 decision, ending Paul’s run. Meanwhile, Delacruz
Honsinger, meanwhile, engaged in a tense 220-pound opening-round match against another Ossining wrestler, Trent Lofaro. In the six minutes of action, all that Honsinger could manage was a single escape, and while he defended well, he still could not quite prevail as Lofaro prevailed by a slim 2-1 margin.
Unlike Paul, Honsinger would gain a win in the consolation bracket, recording an impressive 42-second pin over Tappan Zee’s John Hartnett. But Honsinger got hurt in his next match, against Josh Bonneau (Minisink Valley), and took an injury default as Bonneau went on to a fourth-place finish.
Of all the Division I wrestlers that went to the state meet, only one – Carthage’s Shayne Brady – made it to the top, becoming the first state champion in his program’s history when he beat James Corbett (Wantagh) 5-3 in overtime in Saturday night’s title match.