As expected, the first Saturday of the season did not disappoint. WNY teams showed up to wrestle throughout sections V and VI. Top teams battled one another in dual meet tournaments. Other top squads ran away with individual tournament titles. The implications of this past weekend’s results will be felt for weeks to come in this young season. Here’s what YOU need to know about the important results from the first weekend of wrestling action.
47th Annual Joe Shifflet Sweet Home Dual Meet Tournament (Fri 11/30-Sat 12/1/2018)
Falconer (#3 in WNY small schools) won its third straight Sweet Home title with a record of 8-0 over the two-day event. Head coach Drew Wilcox and the Golden Falcons earned wins over Section V powers Attica/Batavia and Churchville-Chili as well as large school power #3 Grand Island by a score of 60-21 and #1 small school Iroquois 51-29. Standouts Jimmy Kramer and Robbie Penhollow were both dominate with 8-0 records on the weekend. Iroquois’s Cory Day was named tournament MOW in being dominate for the Chiefs and also earned a decision victory over fellow defending Section VI champion Connor Kenney from Grand Island. Iroquois earned a hard fought dual victory over Grand Island 49-27. Grand Island finished 4th in the team standings and Kenney earned his 100th career victory. Sectional finalist and state tournament wildcard Adam Daghestani was outstanding with an 8-0 record and an overtime victory against Attica/Batavia’s Blake Pariso (3rd in Section V 2017-2018).
20th Annual Tonawanda Warrior Team Duals (Fri 11/30-Sat 12/1/2018)
Possibly the most impactful event of the weekend. Niagara Falls earned wins over four WNY ranked teams (Amherst, Clarence, Newfane, and West Seneca West) and upstart Starpoint while going 7-0 over the two-day event. Clarence beat everyone except The Falls, and West Seneca, Amherst, and Starpoint all took turns beating each other. Tonawanda earned a victory over Starpoint as well. Not only was this a grinder of a team tournament, there were plenty of high level individual matchups as well. Clarence’s Aiden Rabideau bumped up to take on Tonawanda’s Zach Braddell but dropped a close 3-1 decision. Braddell also took on state champion Willie McDougald but lost by decision. Starpoint’s Sam Stoelting was a winner by decision over Falls’ Mike Snowden, but dropped a close match 2-1 to Amherst’s Antoine Walker. Meanwhile, Williamsville North’s Mike Catanzaro was a winner over Walker, 5-0. The Warrior Duals was a wild yet highly important tournament. Matchups that happened this weekend are sure to impact the Duals and postseason qualifications over the next few months.
14th Annual Queen City Foods Southtowns Duals (Fri 11/30-Sat 12/1/2018)
St. Francis hosted and was the repeat champion of the Southtowns Duals going 8-0 in dual meets. The Rad Raiders earned quality wins over Orchard Park, Hamburg, East Aurora, and Lake Shore and had five wrestlers post 8-0 records of their own. Orchard Park got the new season off on the right foot with a runner-up finish going 7-1. Hamburg’s Ryan Forrest was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Wrestler. East Aurora’s Johnny Putney posted a perfect tournament record and set the Blue Devil’s program individual win record in the process.
Matthew Marino Invitational Tournament (Fri 11/30-Sat 12/1/2018)
Niagara Wheatfield stormed to the tournament title by an outrageous 67.5 point margin over host and runner-up Webster Schroeder (V). The Marino tournament is one of the Rochester area’s toughest annually held tournaments. Five Falcons made the finals with brothers Justin and Warren McDougald facing tough opponents, but ultimately claiming individual titles. Justin was a winner by decision over fellow two-time NYS place winner John Worthing from Tioga, 2-0, for the 138-pound tournament title. Warren faced another Tioga Tiger in Austin Lamb, also a two-time NYS tournament place winner. Warren earned a 3-1 decision win for first place at 152-pounds. Defending Section VI champion Collin Coughenour made the final but fell to two-time NYS champion Anthony Noto from Honeoye Falls-Lima. Another defending sectional champion Josh Thibeault earned a huge overtime win against defending NYS champion Dempsey Carroll from Copenhagen (Section III) in the semifinals but fell to another defending NYS champion in Ross McFarland from Phoenix H.S. (III) in the final. Noto and McFarland were both named tournament Most Outstanding Wrestlers. Fredonia placed 9th in the nineteen-team field led by 220-pound champion Jake Skinner. Skinner was a winner by pin over Wheatfield’s Kevin Halford. Yaniel Acevedo was runner-up in the 285-pound weight class. Dalton Gardner was 3rd at 145-pounds and Giovanni Russo was 4th at 138-pounds. Also, Cattaraugus-Little Valley’s Sam Grey was 3rd at 152-pounds.
7th Annual Palmyra-Macedon Varsity Wrestling Duals (Saturday, 12/1/2018)
Lancaster and St. Joe’s traveled to Palmyra on Saturday and faced an all-Section V field. Lancaster was 4th overall with a 3-2 record on the day. The Legends won pool matches against Canandaigua, Waterloo, and Palmyra-Macedon before falling to Pittsford 45-38. The Legends wrestled Webster Thomas for 3rd place but fell 52-16. Joe’s fell to Webster Thomas, Hilton, Canisteo-Greenwood, and Midlakes before earning a win over Canandaigua in the consolation final, 42-37. Hilton was the tournament champion. The Marauders will face off with the Legends on Thursday, 12/6 at Lancaster H.S.
Holley-Kendall Team Tournament (Saturday, 12/1/2018)
The Dave Wilcox era of Canisius Wrestling got off to a great start on Saturday where the Crusaders posted a 5-0 dual record to win the Holley-Kendall duals. Canisius earned victories over Section V squads East Irondequoit-Eastridge, Holley-Kendall, Lyndonville, and Campbell-Savona/Bradford. Senior Matt Baldwin was named the tournament Most Outstanding Wrestler.
Avoca Duals (Saturday 12/1/2018)
Portville was the lone Section VI representative in a tournament of ten teams. The Panthers earned wins over Alfred-Almond, Bath-Haverling, and Addison in pool action before falling to Marcus Whitman/Penn Yan. However, the Panthers would post a 4-1 record on the day and take home 3rd place with a win over Williamson, 54-24.
23rd Annual Triple-O Mechanical/Byron-Bergen Invitational (Saturday, 12/1/2018)
Pioneer won the team title on a day when the Panthers were without NYS 4th place finisher Mike Rigerman who was being awarded the prestigious Connolly Cup as WNY’s best high school football player. Trevor Smith was the sole Panther champion at 285-pounds while two others in Daniel Kirsch and Frank Ras were runners-up at their weights. Where the Panthers won the tournament was in the wrestlebacks when six wrestlers won 3rd places. Chautauqua Lake was second in the final team score. Three Thunderbirds in Martin Ohlsson, Trent Burchanowski, and Austin Bourgeois won individual titles. 2017-2018 Section VI champion Brendon Ramsey fell to Letchworth’s Chase Runfola in the 145-pound final. Returning state tournament wildcard Ben Szymanowski fell to defending Section V champion Nick Serce from Irondequoit in the 220-pound final. Three more Thunderbirds placed in the top four of their weights. Both Pioneer and Chautauqua Lake placed ahead of Perry and Letchworth, two of the ‘favorites’ to potentially capture the Section V Division 2 Dual Meet title.
Bill Andersen Memorial Wrestling Tournament (Saturday, 12/1/2018)
Lockport attended the annual Andersen Tournament at Cicero-North Syracuse H.S. in Cicero (Section III). Connor Regis was the lone champion for the Lions with a 3-2 win over Windsor’s (Section IV) Collin Bidwell in the 220-pound final. Ethan Perkins and Brandon Larkin each placed 3rd in their weights.
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