NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y.— Yorktown had two of its grapplers earn first-place finishes in the divisionals at New Rochelle on Feb. 4, including junior captain Connor Thomas.
“It was great to win divisionals, of course,” Thomas said. “However, it is just the first step in my goal of placing high in sectionals.”
Thomas beat Ossining’s Tyrese Marbury by a 7-5 decision in the 160-pound final.
“I had another close match with Marbury today,” Thomas said. “I felt like I wrestled better against him today than I did two weeks ago, but he caught me in the third period. That made the match a lot closer than I wanted it to be.”
Thomas said he will need to practice very hard this week and work closely with his coaches and teammates, to have a shot at reaching his goal of placing high in the Section 1 Division 1 tournament. That will be held Saturday, Feb. 11 at Arlington and Sunday, Feb. 12 at Clarkstown South.
“The team also had a great day today, with 10 wrestlers qualifying for sectionals,” Thomas said. “This applies specifically to our 106 pounders Chris Perry, who took first, and Dean Patierno, who took fourth, and our 145 pounder, my co-captain Patrick Patierno, who took third.”
Perry said winning divisionals was a great feeling.
“It has given me another confidence boost going into sectionals,” said Perry, an eighth-grader. “I was glad I was able to represent my town as well as I did.”
Perry won the 106-pound final by defeating Suffern’s Steven Trombetta, 7-1.
“Steven Trombetta is a great wrestler but what enabled me to beat him was me being able to keep scoring throughout the match,” Perry said.
The eighth-grader said going into sectionals he has to take it one match at a time.
“The key to going far in these postseason tournaments is never overlooking the match you’re about to wrestle,” Perry said.
Andrew Finateri (120 pounds, fourth), Mauricio Arango (132, fourth), Matt Steigmeier (182, second), Owen Mcgivney (195, second), Evontay Johnson (195, third) and Thomas Carson (285, second) also qualified for the sectionals for Yorktown.
Lakeland/Panas senior captain Brandon DiDomenico also placed first at New Rochelle.
“Being that I was the runner up at divisionals two years in a row, it feels great to finally finish on top,” DiDomenico said.
DiDomenico defeated Tappan Zee’s Mark Acheson by a 5-2 decision in the 113-pound final.
“The key to defeating Acheson would be scoring the first points in the match,” DiDomenico said. “Once I scored first, more points started flowing and I was able to finish the match comfortably.”
Teammates Justin Rosario (126, second), Ryan Ocasio (120, third) and Kevin Moore (170, third) will join DiDomenico in the sectionals.
“The key to winning it this year is to stay healthy, practice with off the charts intensity prior to the tournament and give it everything I got when the time comes,” said DiDomenico, who placed fourth in the sectionals a season ago.