NCAA Tournament: Heilmann and DelVecchio Both Secure All-American Honors; Suriano Becomes Rutgers' First-Ever Finalist


CLEVELAND, OH -The senior class of South Plainfield High School’s “Murderer’s Row”, the 2013 team that earned a group title, two individual state titles, and produced five state placewinners, knows a thing or two about making wrestling history. The 2018 NCAA wrestling tournament marks the last time two standouts from 2013 team, Troy Heilmann and Scott DelVecchio, will be competing in scholastic wrestling.

With one day of competition left in the national tournament, the two former Tigers have already firmly etched their name into the record books. Both wrestlers ended Friday’s completion by securing All-American honors for the first time in their careers, and both will be looking to secure a top-spot in their weight classes brackets come Saturday.

Heilmann, the fourth-seed at 149-pounds earned his way to the semifinals with a victory over Ohio State’s Ke-Shawn Hayes. In the semifinals, Heilmann, a University of North Carolina grappler, drew the toughest outing in the bracket against top-seeded Zain Retherford of Penn State.

Sign Up for E-News

Retherford, a two-time defending national champion, was riding a 93-match winning streak when he entered the semifinal match, and the Penn State grappler proved once again how he earned that record.

The Penn State wrestler connected on four takedowns and earned an escape point and one point for riding during a methodical 10-4 win over Heilmann. The setback knocked Heilmann to the consolation semifinals, but not before he secured his first All-American accolade.

The UNC wrestler will return to the mats on Saturday and will face Grant Leeth (Missouri).  A win in his first consolation match will set Heilmann up for a third place match, while a loss would put him in the fifth place match.

DelVecchio’s road to All-American status certainly wasn’t an easy one, but it was definitely exciting for the fans who got to watch it. DelVecchio, a 133-pound unseeded wrestler out of Rutgers University, started his tournament off with a 4-0 decision loss to 14th-seeded Korbin Myers of Edinboro . The senior Scarlet Knight didn’t let that first result get to him though, as he was able to record wins over Mason Pengilly (Stanford),13th-seeded Bryan Lantry (Buffalo) and Rico Montoya (University of Northern Colorado) to secure a spot in the bloodrounds against Drexel’s seventh-seed Austin DeSanto.

After a scoreless first period, DeSanto used a takedown and a near fall to take a 6-2 lead into the third period. The South Plainfield product had top position to start the third , and trailed 6-3 with 30 seconds left in regulation, after DeSanto drew two stalling calls. DelVecchio’s punishing top control forced two more stalling calls on DeSanto, and also earned the Scarlett Knight one minute and one second of riding time, which was just enough to score the point that forced sudden victory overtime.

When the whistle for overtime came it was apparent that DelVecchio’s attack had visibly worn down the Drexler wrestler. DelVecchio quickly took advantage and landed a takedown that secured his spot on the 133-pound podium. DelVecchio kept the ball rolling with his consolation quarterfinal match against sixth-seeded Scott Parker of Lehigh. A takedown late in the second period, and another takedown late in the the third period gave DelVecchio a 5-2 win over Parker. The Scarlet Knight will take on unseeded Tariq Wilson of North Carolina State in the consolation semifinals on Saturday,

Nick Suriano, a fourth-seed at 125 pounds, created some major history for the Scarlett Knights as he took a 2-0 decision win over top-seeded Darian Cruz (Lehigh) in the 125-pound semifinals. The victory put Suriano into the finals, which already makes him the best NCAA tournament finish in Rutgers program history. On the other side of the bracket, third-seeded Spencer Lee (Iowa) recorded a surprising pin over second-seeded Nathan Tomasello (Ohio State). If Suriano prevails over Lee on Saturday, he would be first-ever Scarlett Knight to earn an NCAA title.

The opinions expressed herein are the writer's alone, and do not reflect the opinions of or anyone who works for is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the writer.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News


Staci Berger for Ward 3 Piscataway Township Council, June 5 Democratic Primary

April 24, 2018

1. Why are you running for election for Piscataway Township Council, Ward 3?

I am running for the Piscataway Township Council Ward 3 position because our community needs new leadership. I will be the independent, principled, and collaborative advocate our neighborhood deserves.

I have been a Piscataway homeowner for 20 years.  I am proud that my husband, Bill Irwin, and I are raising ...

Dr. Jacqueline Littlejohn - Candidate for Piscataway Town Council

Why are you running for election to the Piscataway Township Council?

I am running for election to the Piscataway Township Council because I believe that a vibrant democracy only flourishes when the governed have a voice in their government, be it in the form of compromise, protest, or even becoming viable candidates themselves. I have chosen the latter approach. As a candidate I want to be the ...

The Piscataway Democratic Organization Names its 2018 Ward Slate

The Piscataway Democratic Party is putting forward an incredible slate of ward candidates for the Township Council.  “Frank Uhrin, Jim Bullard, Steven D. Cahn and Michele Lombardi have brought us a 12 percent drop in the tax rate, many new job opportunities for hard working residents, and a rise in property values,” party chair and former mayor, Ted Light said.  ...

Bristol-Myers Squibb Chemist Used Thallium to Poison Husband

April 24, 2018

MONROE, NJ - A local woman who killed her husband using "the poisoner's poison" did not win an appeal yesterday to have her life sentence repealed.

Middlesex County Prosecutor Andrew C. Carey announced that a Monroe Township woman’s 2013 murder conviction was affirmed today by the Superior Court of New Jersey, Appellate Division.

Tianle Li, 48, of Monroe Township ...


Piscataway – Reinhard Rudolf Kiefer, 85, died Sunday March 11, 2018 at home. Born in ...
Read more
Piscataway, NJ – Manuela Cruz, 94, born July 17, 1923, passed away peacefully on March 8, ...
Read more

Step Outdoors and Into Spring with the Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Middlesex County

April 24, 2018

EARTH CENTER, SOUTH BRUNSWICK, NJ - Looking for something to do outdoors? The Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Middlesex County is pleased to announce its spring and summer events! There will be opportunities for kids and adults to learn the basics of gardening, for experienced gardeners to sharpen their skills and for bargain hunters to add to their collections.

These events are ...

Craft Brew Fest Pours Into Westfield April 28; TAPinto Readers Get $20 Off

Westfield Hops – A Craft Beer Experience will be taking place on at the Westfield Armory April 28 with one session from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Enter code TAPINTO when you order your tickets and get $20 off! Tickets are available online at All tickets include unlimited tastings and a souvenir tasting glass. 

Westfield Hops – A Craft Beer ...

Ready for Rutgers Day this Saturday?

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - RU ready for Rutgers Day?

You will not want to miss the university’s annual welcome and show-and-tell for New Jersey residents of all ages. It all takes place this Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

It is already thr 10th anniversary of Rutgers Day, There will be more than 700 free performances, demonstrations and interactive activities. Last ...

Upcoming Events

Wed, April 25, 5:00 PM


Better Together

Giving Back


Sat, April 28, 11:00 AM

New Market Firehouse, Piscataway

Sickle Cell Fundraiser and Bike Blessing

Education Giving Back

Sat, April 28, 7:00 PM

Crescent Avenue Presbyterian Church, Plainfield

Plainfield Symphony Mahler's 9th Symphony

Arts & Entertainment


Sun, April 29, 9:00 AM

Piscataway High School, Piscataway

PWay 5K Run/Walk 2018

Education Sports

Sun, April 29, 2:00 PM

Otto Kaufman Community Center, Skillman

Relax, Rejuvenate, Renew

Health & Wellness

Kurt Steiner, a Holocaust Survivor, tells Life Story as 106th Birthday Draws Near

April 23, 2018

CRANFORD, NJ – In a quaint white house near the border of Cranford and Garwood, 105-year-old Kurt Steiner sat at his dining room table, surrounded by cabinets that held his collection of Viennese glass and antique Limoge plates. At his table, he had his carefully taped together passport and exit papers from Vienna, Austria, stamped with a large “J” and “Jude,” the ...

Cluelessly Clueless

I teenaged my way through high school under the assumption that my parents had no idea what I was doing.  I like to think I was pretty good at withholding information and presenting situations in ways that were other than they really were.


Still, sometimes they found things out.  Like the time my friends plopped me on our front door step at one o'clock in the morning ...