ATLANTIC CITY, NJ - Well represented in Atlantic City the Cranford wrestling team is leaving highly decorated.
Of the six wrestlers to make the NJSIAA Individual Championship, four earned medals.
Senior Vince Concina had the best finish winning his fifth-place match at 170 pounds. Following him was senior Tom Digiovanni in sixth (138 pounds), and seniors Chris Scorese (132 pounds) and Alex Esposito (285 pounds) placing seventh.
“We are just a bunch of tough kids,”Concina said. “We all work hard. Being surrounded by good teammates helps us a lot.”
Concina won a close one to earn fifth. Scoreless through the first period against Delbarton’s Cole Kreshpane, Concina earned the first points with an escape.
A takedown with 10 seconds remaining made it 3-0 and enough for Concina to be able to keep the lead and win 3-1.
“I was always looking to score points but at the end was doing whatever to stay up,” Concina who is wrestling with an unknown ankle injury said. “This is my first time placing and I ended my career on a good note.”
It would be his final wrestling match as Concina plans skipping college and joining the Marines.
Digiovanni struggled in his final match losing 11-1. Getting him into position to medal as the No. 10 seed was beating the No. 7 and No. 2 seed before losing in the semifinals to the eventual champion Jake Benner from Ocean Township.
Scorese and Esposito both finished their seasons with convincing victories. Scorese went ahead 9-0 through two periods before winning 14-5 and Esposito pinned his opponent in 2:12.
“I always know it’s there for me,” Esposito said. “Feels great to come away with the medal and ending my high school career with a win.
Rounding out the rest of Cranford’s wrestlers in Atlantic City was senior Anthony Capece (113 pounds) and senior Brian McGoven (160 pounds).
Capece fell to the No. 1 seed 3-0 in the second round and lost one match shy of the medal rounds losing a 5-4 decision to finish the tournament 3-2.
McGoven lost in the opening round before coming back with two pins in the wrestle backs before falling 8-5 to finish the tournament 2-2.