Feb 26 2012
ALBANY — The morning started with hundreds of impressive, battle-tested and focused wrestlers and by Friday night, the first day of the New York State Public High School Athletic Association wrestling championship became the longest day for many of the competitors.
Section II sent 49 qualifiers and at-large selections into the Times Union Center and now, only 12 remain with a chance of being named as a state champion, including just four from Saratoga County.
Shenendehowa will send its group of seniors, Tony Fusco (185), Cole Lampman (285) and junior Nick Kelley (132) into this morning’s semifinals all the hopes for the South Glens Falls Bulldogs rest with senior Stephen Lumley in his 170-pound final.
“You have to wrestle two good matches, that’s the reality,” Shenendehowa coach Rob Weeks said. “If you don’t wrestle well, it can be a real long day because if you catch a loss early, you have to wrestle back throughout the day. To not win your first match, is the longest road back and we have four of those guys.”
What a difference a year makes when the Plainsmen send five competitors to the semifinals at last year’s state event, but didn’t see one succeed and earn entry into the final. This year, two of his four competitors saw their season’s end Friday, losing for the second time and being ousted from the tournament.
Shenendehowa eighth-grader Kevin Parker struggled with his first entry into the NYSPHSAA tournament, pinned in his first match by Minisink Valley’s Gerard Daly from Section IX in four minutes, and then pinned quickly by senior Josh Antonie from the PSAL Grand Street Campus in under a minute.
He wasn’t alone as freshman teammate Jesse Porter was decisioned by Ossining’s Alex Delacruz, 4-1 and then fell to junior Santo Curatolo, 2-1 in the consolation contest.
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