Connor Cortese at 76 pounds and 110-pounder Drew Mitzak won their respective weight classes on Saturday to earn "King of the Mat" wrestling titles for the Chatham Youth Wrestling Club.
Cortese found himself down, 5-0, in the third period of his first match, but turned it up in the third period to take the lead and the match by the score of 8-5. Connor repeated this approach in his second match. Down 4-0, Connor came on strong in the opening seconds of the third period and pinned his opponent with a cradle. In the finals, Connor pinned his rival in the first period.
Mitzak beat his first opponent, 8-0; pinned his second opponent and obtained a technical fall (15-0) against his third opponent to take home a gold medal and the crown.
Teddy Joel (55), John Rohe (71), Jack Barrett (90) and Jacob Mahon (105) all came in second. John Rohe lost a first-round heartbreaker, 9-8. but bounced back to pin his second opponent and then beat his third opponent 13-2.
Mahon also suffered a heartbreaker but his came in the finals. Mahon pinned his first three opponents. In the finals, the score was tied 0-0. With 14 seconds left, Mahon scored an escape to take a 1-0 lead. Unfortunately, his opponent scored a takedown for two points with one second left on the clock.
Barrett (90) pinned his first opponent, lost his second match and then pinned his final opponent.
Joel pinned his first opponent, beat his next opponent but lost a close match in the finals to finish the day in second place.
Joseph Enright (60), the youngest wrestler at the tournament on behalf of Chatham came in third place. Although he won one match and lost two ( 6-1 and 5-3), his two losses were close and came against older and much more experienced wrestlers.
Dean Ciccarelli (102) had a great start pinning his first two opponents, but then suffered two consecutive defeats to finish the day in third place.
Collin Boler (65), Luke Pacchia (75) and Will Ryan (80) all wrestled well in their respective matches and finished the day in fourth.
The Chatham Wrestling Club is open to boys and girls pre-k to 8th grade. Registration is ongoing. Anyone interested in joing this club can contact John Nonnenmacher at email@example.com.