With a tough, all-out effort, Baldwinsville wrestler Luke Eberl led his side with a second-place finish during last Saturday’s Section III Division I championships at SRC Arena.
In all, nine Bees took to the mat at Onondaga Community College, determined to get to the top of the standings and perhaps earn a trip to Albany’s Times Union Center for the Feb. 23 New York State Public High School Athletic Association championships.
Eberl was the no. 3 seed at 182 pounds. In the quarterfinals, he pinned Liverpool’s Ron Cyr midway through the second period, and a classic semifinal followed against Auburn’s no. 2 seed, Keyshin Cooper.
Through six tough minutes, Eberl did enough to earn a 4-3 decision, which put him in the final against Carthage’s Fombo Azah, the top seed with a 33-3 record. Azah prevailed due to an injury default, and Eberl’s record went to 30-8.
In that same bracket at 182, the Bees’ Dom Sposato lost a 9-7 battle to Jamesville-DeWitt/CBA’s Shoh Alibekov in the quarterfinals, but recovered in the consolation bracket and ultimately won a 6-2 rematch with Alibekov for fifth place.
Elsewhere for B’ville, Aiden Cali got close to third place at 99 pounds. After a semifinal defeat to Justin Wright (Rome Free Academy), Cali beat Dylan Waldron (Fulton) 5-3, and in the consolation bracket final was a single takedown away from victory, only to fall 4-3 to Carthage’s Frank Downing.
Billy Loadwick settled for fourth place at 285 pounds after a narrow 6-5 defeat to Syracuse’s Carveion Wright, but this came after back-to-back pins in his consolation bracket over Liverpool’s J.J. Guindy in 1:27 and West Genesee’s Chandler McAvan in 3:42.
Mike Letizia recovered from his quarterfinal defeat to Devin VanLengen (Carthage) with a run to fifth place at 195 pounds, capped by claiming a 5-4 overtime rematch with VanLengen that matched what Sposato did.
Max Naples (113 pounds) pinned Cadin Waldau (Central Square) in 3:22 before a quarterfinal defeat to the eventual champion, Indian River’s Alex Booth.
Mason Clark wrestled at 99 and lost, 5-4, in the first round to another Carthage wrestler, Sam Albright. At 145 pounds, Nate Hahn fell 12-5 to West Genesee’s Colin McAvan and Jacob Mitts (220 pounds) fell 4-1 to New Hartford’s Charles Tibbits.