Sports

PREVIEW: Seven South Plainfield Wrestlers to Compete for Individual State Championship

1443a9e253b2ab1bbe1c_SP_Delvecchio.JPG
30d85b3c74993c0b43ee_best_e883a9914a8bc6b068de_DSC_0004.JPG
1443a9e253b2ab1bbe1c_SP_Delvecchio.JPG

SOUTH PLAINFIELD- The best young wrestlers in the state will be laying it all on the line in Atlantic City this weekend. The 2017 NJSIAA state wrestling tournament will kick off at Boardwalk Hall on Friday, and like in many years, South Plainfield High School will be well represented. Here’s a look at how the weekend could go for all seven of the Tigers that qualified for the tournament.

All of South Plainfield’s competing wrestlers will be looking to end their season with a good finish in the tournament, but Joe Heilmann might have the best shot at taking a top 3 spot on the podium. The 120 pound junior will be looking to improve on his 5th place finish from last year’s 106 pound bracket. Heilmann’s diverse takedown arsenal and penchant for scoring back points helped him dominate his way to a District 14 title, a GMC title, and a 39-1 record.

Unfortunately for Heilmann, his one loss came in his last outing which was a Region 4 championship match decision loss to Michael Kelly of St. Peter’s Prep. The loss was certainly a setback for Heilmann --who had been previously ranked as highly as the number two 120-pounder in the state by NJ.com-- but it didn’t hurt his seeding too much since he’ll be entering the tournament at the four spot.

Sign Up for E-News

To reach the semifinals Heilmann would probably have to get past Mark Schleifer of East Brunswick, a wrestler that Heilmann edged out 4-3 in the GMC tournament finals. If Heilmann wins that rematch he’ll most likely be paired off against top-seeded Pat Glory of DelBarton. Heilmann and Kelly are on opposite sides of the bracket, so the only way Heilmann could avenge his sole loss of the season would be in either the finals or in a consolation match.

Despite his youth, Zach DelVecchio has been a major force in the 220-pound weight class ever since he first suited up for South Plainfield last year as a freshman. As the only ninth-grader in last year’s state tournament, DelVecchio earned an impressive seventh place finish. In an interview with TapInto last week after the Region 4 tournament, DelVecchio said his improved conditioning will push him to a higher finish this time around.

The sophomore’s cardio and strength has indeed taken him pretty far this season.  The young Tiger has amassed a 40-1 record this year, with his one loss coming from out of state competition, and is coming off a decision win in the Region 4 finals over Carteret’s Farhan Kahn.

To place higher this year, DelVecchio, a seventh-seed, would likely have to defeat Sam Mellow of Montclair in the second round, which would set him up with a match against last year’s runner up and second-seeded Robert Melise of Phillipsburg.

Jake Giordano didn’t book his ticket to the tournament they way he likely envisioned, but he still has a chance to make something of his opportunity. After winning conference and district 126-pound titles, the senior co-captain seemed slate to take home a region title last week, but a 3-2 decision loss to Rahway’s Rhise Royster sent Giordano home with a second place finish.

As the tenth-seed, Giordano will have a chance at putting that loss behind him. To do better than his first round exit in last year’s tournament, Giordano would have to beat 23-seed Connor Kraus of St. Augustine Prep. A win in the first round would pair Giordano off against Howell’s seventh-seed Kyle Slendhorn.

Joe Sacco will be making his first ever state tournament appearance in this year’s bracket at 138 pounds. A first place finish in the conference tournament, a second place finish in districts, and a fourth place finish in regions helped the 37-6 sophomore earn the 25th-seed. Sacco would have to pull off an upset against 8th-seeded Matthew Kolonia of Delaware Valley to get past the first round. Sacco lost an 11-1 major decision to the Delaware Valley standout in a dual earlier this season. The task might seem daunting, but Sacco’s wins over ninth-seeded Sean Conley, and 12th-seeded Bob Dinger show he’s capable of stepping up to the challenge against top-flight competition.

Luke Niemeyer has been putting on some impressive performances in his first varsity year for the Tigers, and it’s helped him earn a 25th-seed in the 195 bracket of the state tournament. The sophomore has used his prolific pinning ability to go 35-5 on the season, and earn first place finishes in conference and district tournaments and a fourth place finish in regions. To get past the first round, the sophomore would have to take out eighth-seeded and 34-1 Michael Taulane of Collingswood. Niemeyer has shown throughout this season that he can hang with some of the top guys in his weight class though, as he has a decision win over 10th-seeded Andrew Brazicki of Bishop Ahr and a pin victory over 11th-seeded Rory DeLuca of Hanover Park.

Kyle Bythell will be looking to use his tournament berth to end his senior year on a positive note. The 145 pound senior co-captain is no stranger to Atlantic City, as he qualified for the tournament last year. A 35-8 record and a fourth place finish in regions gave Bythell a 26th-seed spot in this year’s tournament. To improve from his finish in last year’s tournament, Bythell would have to pull of a first-round upset against Garrett Beam of Queen of Peace.

Alex Amato’s first state tournament appearance will see him enter as the 32nd-seed in the 113 pound bracket. The sophomore will likely have the toughest first-round outing out of the Tigers since his first match will be against top-seeded Antonio Mininno of Gateway/Woodbury. The 26-17 Tiger is coming off a fourth place finish in regions.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

South Plainfield

The Athlete of the Week Joe Sacco Wrestling

The South Plainfield Wrestling Team finished their dual meet season with a deceiving 20-7 record.  This past week saw the Tigers defeat Ewing (69-4), Bordentown Regional (49-9), and Ocean Township (54-6) to win the Central Jersey Group III Sectional Championship.  This advanced South Plainfield to the Group III State Championships yet again.  The wrestling team defeated Voorhees ...

The Athlete of the Week: Alyzah Ziga Co-ed Swimming

This past week South Plainfield’s Co-ed Swim Team finished their season.  The team was competitive in most meets, many times competing against bigger schools.  Junior Alyzah Ziga was an integral part of the Tiger’s Swim Team.

On Friday 2/2, Alyzah scored a total of 8 points against Linden with a 1st place in the 200 Individual Medley with a time of 2:29.55 and in 1st ...

Obituaries

South Plainfield - Mary E. Ridilla, 96,  passed away on Thursday, February 15, 2018 at the ...
Read more

Letters to the Editor

South Plainfield Middle School Student Council Thanks Supporters

February 21, 2018

The South Plainfield Middle School Student Council would like to express our thanks for the support of local businesses and organizations in our fundraising efforts.  A spaghetti dinner was hosted by the South Plainfield Elks Lodge #2298 on January 13th.  Mrs. Sharon Reuter and members of her Youth Committee and kitchen crew provided dinner for family, friends and staff of South ...

South Plainfield Residents  Named to Fall 2017 Dean's List at Seton Hall University

February 13, 2018

SOUTH ORANGE, NJ -- Seton Hall University is pleased to announce the following students who qualified for Fall 2017 Dean's list and to congratulate them for their outstanding academic achievements:

Brooke Barry, Lindsay Celentano, Cj Dudek, Kaitlyn Faustini, Christopher McNeil,  Meagan Praul,  

Kyle Russell, Matthew Taco Bravo and Tomasz ...

Community Happenings

Pre-Ticket Sale for Holy Savior Academy’s 4th Annual Spring Splendor Tricky Tray

February 7, 2018

Holy Savior Academy is hosting its Spring Splendor Tricky Tray Saturday, April 21, 2018 at the school.  Doors open at 6:00 p.m.

Tickets are limited and will be sold at Holy Savior Academy, 149 South Plainfield Avenue, South Plainfield on Friday, February 9, 2016 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. (cash or checks)

BYOB and food- Admission $ 25 per person includes:  ...

Volleyball Fundraiser for the Eggert Family on March 11, 2018

February 18, 2018

WHAT:

Two divisions, Co-Ed High School and Co-Ed adult

Guaranteed two games per team

Double Elimination

8 people per team

 

COST:

High School teams = $50 per team

Adult Teams = $100 per team

12 Teams Max for each division

Please mail checks to 1107 Worth Drive, South Plainfield NJ 07080

High school - please submit your teams and payment to Justin ...

Holy Savior Academy hosts appreciation luncheon for Deanery Pastors

February 16, 2018

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ - The students and Board of Limited Jurisdiction of Holy Savior Academy (HSA), South Plainfield hosted a special luncheon to honor and celebrate the Pastors of twelve local Catholic churches that sponsor the school.  

The event was held at HSA on Tuesday February 13 and included a festive lunch featuring a home-cooked meal prepared by members of ...

Holy Savior Academy Cheer Competition

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ - Holy Savior Academy’s cheerleading squad is on winning streak.  Competing at the Biddy Level in the CCCANJ League, the girls took 1st place in the first two competitions of this cheer season. The 12 girl squad competed in the Immaculate Conception and the St. Mary’s competitions and came out on top beating fellow Catholic Schools, Immaculate ...

Bios, Photos of Past Labor Day Grand Marshals Needed for Eagle Scout Project

February 21, 2018

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ – Joseph Kelly, a senior at South Plainfield High School and member of Boy Scout Troop 207, is seeking the community’s help to see his Eagle Scout project come to fruition.

Kelly is looking to compile a ‘wall of fame’ honoring the men and women who have served as honorary grand marshals of the borough’s Labor Day Parade since 1961. The ...

Upcoming Events

Thu, February 22, 12:00 PM

American Legion, South Plainfield

Boy Scout Troop 207 Spaghetti Dinner

Food & Drink

Carousel_image_2016772e51de2589b65e_lenten_dinners

Fri, February 23, 5:00 PM

South Plainfield

The Sacred Heart Lenten Fish Dinners

Carousel_image_160974dbc9379a0238f6_meet_the_mayor

Sat, February 24, 8:00 AM

South Plainfield

Meet the Mayor at the Senior Center

Carousel_image_01278d9d6764037b0a59_children_s_march_flyer-page-001

Sat, February 24, 2:00 PM

South Plainfield

The Children’s March being shown at the South ...

Carousel_image_4d7f13f1bac1e8a84adb_races_flyer_4-page-001

Sat, February 24, 7:00 PM

South Plainfield

Night at the Races - Tricky Tray

Carousel_image_5a8b641c938a30a61d34_img_2324

Sun, February 25, 1:00 PM

South Plainfield

Open House 171 New York Avenue South Plainfield

Real Estate

Columns

Diegnan Bill Allowing Municipalities To Authorize Parking Authorities As Redevelopment Entity Now Law

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ – Legislation sponsored by Senator Patrick Diegnan to allow municipalities to authorize a parking authority as a redevelopment entity is now law.

“We know that smart redevelopment can help to revitalize areas within a town or city, but we have to make sure that municipalities have the flexibility to undertake projects in the most effective way,” said ...

South Plainfield: A Heart for Giving

South Plainfield received over two inches of rain this past weekend. Fortunately, Mother Nature has cooperated, and the precipitation was not of the frozen variety. Despite the rain, nothing could put a damper on South Plainfield’s spirit of helping those in need.

On Saturday a few Borough employees and I had the opportunity to deliver funds that have been raised for a family that has ...

Super Carb Diet by Bob Harper

Super Carb Diet by Bob Harper with Danny Pellegrino (St. Martin's Press, 2017)

It's hard to go on a serious diet, one on which you expect to be successful and maintain a loss. Fortunately, in his new book Super Carb Diet, Bob Harper has given the weight watching world a sensible new diet plan to help achieve a healthy weight.

Harper, host of NBC's popular show The Biggest Loser, ...

Bookmarks

Tax forms are here!  The IRS has sent us printed copies of some of the most commonly used forms and instruction books.  We will continue putting them out as long as our supply lasts.  If you need other forms, we have them available for copying or you can print them out from IRS.gov.  Look on our website for more tax-related links.

The library will be closed on Sunday, ...

Press Releases

New Brunswick/Middlesex County Reentry Site Opens

February 14, 2018

MIDDLESEX COUNTY, NJ - The New Jersey Reentry Corporation (NJRC), a nonprofit agency serving court-involved individuals, is pleased to announce the grand opening a new reentry site in Middlesex County on Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2018 at 11 a.m. The office is located at 57 Livingston Avenue, Unit 3, New Brunswick, N.J. 08901. Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin will offer remarks and cut ...