Sports

Raider Wrestling Big Three Advance to Region Semifinals

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Win with a pin: Alex Mirabella (195 lbs.) locks Evander Jackson (Columbia) in a cradle, pinning him in the 2nd period. Credits: Michael Bruchert
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JT Beirne (138 lbs.) attempts to roll Brandon Jones (Parisppany). Credits: Michael Bruchert
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Brian Lapham (145 lbs.) secures top position before his victory over David Winters (Rahway). Credits: Michael Bruchert
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UNION, NJ - The Scotch Plains-Fanwood wrestling trio of JT Beirne, Brian Lapham, and Alex Mirabella continued their dominating streak at Friday night’s NJSIAA Region quarterfinals.

All three Raiders earned first round byes as District Champions, making their 2015 Region tournament debuts at Union High School.

In the 138 lb. bout, JT Beirne defeated Parsippany’s Brandon Jones by way of a major decision.  Moments later Brian Lapham followed suit, defeating Rahway’s David Winters by major decision in the 145 lb. bout.  

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In his 14th consecutive win, Alex Mirabella (195 lbs.) capped off the Raiders’ successful night, pinning Columbia’s Evander Jackson in 3:13.

With the semifinal round on the immediate horizon, the wrestlers have little time to celebrate their tournament victories.  

“I’m going to sleep! -- In bed by 9:30 tonight and I’ll lay out my things for tomorrow morning,” said Mirabella.

“Right now, I’ll just go home get some rest,” said Beirne. “I’ll think about tomorrow and prepare mentally. I know I am prepared physically, and it’s all about just going out and doing it.”

The Raiders will secure a trip to the State tournament with wins in each of their next matches.  They agreed the tournament stage is distinct from the regular season.

“It can be distracting, but the more you go out there you get used to it,” said Mirabella..  

“I honestly like wrestling in this environment, I like stepping up to the challenge,” said Beirne.

The NJSIAA Region tournament resumes Saturday, Feb. 28 at Union High School.  Weigh ins will be at 7:00 a.m. and the semifinal round begins at 9:00 a.m.

Results:

  • 138: JT Beirne over Brandon Jones (Parsippany) - major dec. 17-5
  • 145: Brian Lapham over David Winters (Rahway) - major dec. 10-2
  • 195: Alex Mirabella over Evander Jackson (Columbia) - pin 3:13

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