Dec 15, 2013 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
From the time it debuted Dec. 7 at the Chittenango Dual Meet to the time it made a stunning comeback to win the Fabius-Pompey Dual Meet a week later, the Marcellus wrestling team saw a lot of mat action – and in the process, proved that it was once again a viable and strong program.
In a showdown last Tuesday against Phoenix, a long-time power new to the OHSL Liberty division, the Mustangs put up quite a fight, leading in the early stages before surrendering that edge in the late going and falling to the Firebirds 38-28.
They started at 113 pounds, where Sam Rice rolled past John Garofalo 14-4, and Ben Hood (120 pounds) followed with a 12-5 decision over Ross McFarland.
Zach Ruggles, at 126 pounds, lost 6-2 to Brad Dietz, but two matches later Tristan Duger (138 pounds) defeated Adam Pinzer 5-1, with Nate Long, at 145 pounds, handling Billy Ostrander 8-2.
But the Mustangs’ lead slipped away when Phoenix won five of the next six matches, two of them forfeits. Only Kevin Morrissey, at 170 pounds, broke up that run, topping Codie Corso 10-3.
Despite this Firebirds surge, Marcellus, trailing 32-16, rallied late as John Dunn (285 pounds) recorded a third-period pin over Derrick Button and Riley Donovan, at 99 pounds, earned a remarkable 10-second pin over Tayler Caruana to make it 32-28.
So, if Alex Czerniak could earn a majority decision over Ryan Dolbear in the 106-pound finale, it would win the match because of the criterium point earned by winning eight of 15 matches. But Dolbeat made the point moot, pinning Czerniak in the second period.
This busy stretch began at Chittenango. Marcellus would go 4-1 at that meet as it won its first three matches, turning back Whitney Point 48-29, holding off Homer 47-35 and routing Onondaga 72-11 to enter contention.
Against Homer, Dunn, Donovan (99) and Morrissey earned pins, with Hood getting a technical fall. Duger earned a crucial victory when he used an overtime takedown to beat the Trojans’ Zach Egan 6-4, this after Ruggles shut out Collin Baker 7-0.
Marcellus only got tripped up in the fourth match, a 39-30 defeat to Central Square that was close until the Red Hawks won four of the last five matches, with only Dunn breaking it up as he edged Cody Stone 5-2.
Both Ruggles and Morrissey earned technical falls, while Hood just missed one in his 15-2 romp over Dylan Wallace. Nick Distefano, at 132 pounds, shut out Zach Putnam 9-0, with Tierney taking out Nathan Rogers 10-5.
Finishing strong, the Mustangs beat host Chittenango 51-27, helped by five pins from Hood, Tierney, Morrissey, Czarniak and Nathan Lukins (152 pounds). Ruggles won a tough 6-3 match over Wyatt Blanding, with Duger falling to Matt Bixby 1-0 and Distefano absorbing a 5-4 loss to Connor Fredericks.
That result, plus the tough battle with Phoenix, toughened up the Mustangs, so when it went to the Fabius-Pompey Duals on Saturday, it was ready to take over.
Marcellus beat Homer, Onondaga/Tully and the hosts from Fabius-Pompey – and in the championship match against Liverpool, the Mustangs, winning the last five bouts, pulled out a dramatic 37-36 victory over the Warriors.
Liverpool had won four of the first five matches, with only Morrissey (170) breaking that string as he pinned Jalen Barron in 1:12. Dunn, at 285, edged David Carney 4-2, and Czarniak fought past Sean Nadeau 7-4, but with five matches to go, Marcellus trailed 36-12.
The rally began with Ruggles, at 126, rolling past Anthony Ianno 13-4. Then Distefano, needing six points, got them when he pinned Devin Delia with 14 seconds left, while Duger (138) didn’t wait as long, getting his pin over Shawn Gebo in 1:14 to make 36-28.
But even with Long stopping Brian Carr 11-4, the Mustangs trailed, 36-31, going into the final bout, needing a pin from Lukins at 152 –and he got it, earning the fall over Liverpool’s Anthony Richardson with just 14 seconds left in their match to help Marcellus win by one.