The Preview: 2009 NY State D1 H.S. Wrestling Tournament

Based upon the section winners and alternate qualifier lists by weight released today, here is a weight-by-weight preview of the NYPHSAA wrestling championships this weekend. Once the final seeds are determined and tournament charts by weight are released we will release our state finalist picks for each weight. Our sectional champion pick is already determined as section 11 – Suffolk County. The depth within this section this year seems to be insurmountable. Sections 2 and 9 should be competitive in Albany this year followed by sections 8, 1, 4 and 6.

Based upon the section winners and alternate qualifier lists by weight released today, here is a weight-by-weight preview of the NYPHSAA wrestling championships this weekend. Once the final seeds are determined and tournament charts by weight are released we will release our state finalist picks for each weight. Our sectional champion pick is already determined as section 11 – Suffolk County. The depth within this section this year seems to be insurmountable. Sections 2 and 9 should be competitive in Albany this year followed by sections 5, 4, 8, 1,  and 6.

96 pounds

Shane Connelly of Warwick Valley (sec.9) is a returning sectional champ at 96 pounds and Mike Soria of Kings Park (sec. 11) is a junior who defeated New York’s previously top ranked Corey Rasheed of Longwood in the section 11 finals. Eric Montgomery of Seaford (sec.8) is another junior 96 pounder.

Other wrestlers to watch: Max Soria is Mike’s twin brother and wrestled Corey Rasheed close in the sec. 11 semi final round. 

103 pounds

The favorite in this weight is Damon McQueen of Huntington (sec. 11). He is an undefeated junior and a returning 3rd place state place winner from last year’s 96 pound weight class. He will have to contend with Brian Realbuto of Somers (sec.1) who placed 4th in NY at 96 pounds in 2008 and also Tim Schaefer of Lancaster (sec. 6) who was 6th in NY at 96 pounds last year.

Other wrestlers to watch: Alex Grant of Macarthur (sec.8) is a senior 96 pounder and Nick Kelly of Shenendehowa is an 8th grader with a 40-1 record this season.

112 pounds

Ken Collado of Hauppauge (sec. 11) is last year’s 103 pound state champion and he may be on a collision course with Bob Dierna of Wayne (sec. 5) who is the returning state champ from last year’s 96 pound weight class.  But this weight class also has two returning 2nd place finishers in NY State. Luke Popolizio of Shenendehowa (sec. 2) was 2nd at 103 pounds in 2008 and Sean McCormick of Johnson City (sec. 4) was 2nd at 96 pounds last season . Sean Kempf of Macarthur (sec.8) may very well be the wrestler to beat in this weight class for anyone looking to be a state champ. Kempf defeated both Popolizio and Collado this season and he boasts a 39-0 record.

Other wrestlers to watch: Anthony Finocchiaro of Baldwinsville (sec. 3) is 45 -1 this season and Peter Detore is a 35-3 junior from tough section 11. Also look for Steven Rodriguez of Fox Lane (se. 1) to make some noise in this weight class.

119 pounds

Justis Flamio of Mahopac (sec. 1) was 2nd in NY State at 112 pounds last year and he will have to contend with Steven Keith of Shoreham Wading River (sec. 11) who took 3rd in that same weight at last year’s state tournament. Keith is undefeated this season. David Hall of Fulton (sec. 3), Matt Waldmiller of Lancaster (sec. 6) and Taylor Laraia of Newburgh Free Academy (sec. 9) are all returners to the NY State tourney from last year. 

Other wrestlers to watch: Alex Gomez of Brentwood (sec. 11) and undefeated Dylan Palacio of Long Beach (sec.8). John Belanger (Shenendehowa – sec. 2) can also be a factor in this weight.

125 pounds

This may be the toughest weight in Albany this year with 6 returning state place winners including two defending state champions. Jamie Franco of Monroe Woodbury (sec. 9) is the defending 125-pound state champion and undefeated Nick Arajau of Syosset (sec.8) has moved up two weights after winning the state tournament at 112 pounds in 2008. Shawn Brown of Canton (sec. 10) was 2nd at 125 pounds last season. Undefeated Nick Meinsen of John Glenn (sec. 11) has moved all the way up from 103 pounds last season where he placed 3rd in NY State. Casey LaNave of Chenango Forks (sec. 4) is also undefeated this year and he placed 2nd at 119 pounds in 2008. C.J.Howard of Pittsford (sec. 5) was 6th at 103 pounds last year and also makes a big jump to the 125-pound weight class.

Other wrestlers to watch: Tyler Sinisgalli of John Glenn (sec. 11)

130 pounds

Cody Ruggierello of Valley Central (sec. 9) is the undefeated favorite and a returning 2nd in NY State at 119 pounds from last season. Matt Cubillos of Guilderland (sec. 2) placed 4th in NY at 125 pounds in 2008 and he will be joined by Jared Messina of Cheektowaga (sec. 6) who placed 5th in NY at the same weight as Cubillos last season. Another returner from the 125-pound weight class in 2008 is Joe Grippi who was 6th in NY at that weight in 2008.

Other wrestlers to watch: Kyle Wade of Islip (sec. 11) and Dan O’Malley of Sachem East (sec. 11)

135 pounds

This weight may very well be a 3-man race to the championship. Fordham Prep’s (CHSAA) Andrew Lenzi was a state champion at 130 pound last season, but he will have to contend with undefeated Stephen Dutton of Rocky Point (sec. 11). Dutton was 3rd in NY at 130 pounds last season and this year he is a perfect 42-0. Joining Lenzi and Dutton is 2-time state champion Paul Ligouri of Wantagh (sec.8) who placed 3rd in New York at 125 pounds last season.

Other wrestlers to watch: Brian Latham of Columbia (sec. 2) and James Loomis of Mexico (sec. 3) each have only one loss this season and Tyler Peet of Unadilla Valley (sec. 4) is 29-2. Both Loomis and Peet are returning state tournament participants.

140 pounds

Andy Rodriguez of Central Islip (sec. 11) is a junior who returns to the state tournament as a 4th place finisher at 135 pounds last season. Rodriguez is the only returning place winner in this weight class. Nick Terdick of John Glenn (sec. 11) has only one loss this season and that is to Rodriguez in the section 11 finals. Brian Guilfoyle of Corning (sec. 3) is a returner to this tournament as is Nate Skiba of Kenmore West (sec. 6). 

Other wrestlers to watch:  Joey Hauser of Lakeland/Panas (sec. 1) is undefeated this season. Guiseppi Lanzi of Amsterdam (sec. 2) could be a factor in Albany.

145 Pounds

Zach Clemente of LaSalle (sec. 2) is the clear favorite in this weight class as the only returning place winner. Clemente was a state champion at 140 pounds last year.  Paul Morabito of Spencerport (sec. 5) will be a contender along with Anthony Volpe of Rocky Point (sec. 11). Luke Speno of Fox Lane (sec. 1) is a returner who lost 2 close matches to state place winners in this tournament last year.

Other wrestlers to watch:  Brian Herold of Macarthur (sec.8)

152 pounds

John Gresheimer of Wantagh (sec.8) is the undefeated returning state champion from last year’s 145 pound weight class and the favorite to win at 152 pounds this year. But another undefeated wrestler who took 6th at 135 pounds in NY State last season is section 5’s Josh Veltre of Greece Olympia. Zach McCormick of Johnson City (sec. 4) returns as a participant at the NY state tournament and so does Robert Malvestuto of Niagra Wheatfield (sec. 6).

Other wrestlers to watch: Ryan Rheaume of Riverhead (sec. 11).

160 pounds

Two third place finishers from last year’s state tournament return in this weight class. James Brundage of Ossining (sec. 1) took 3rd at 160 last year and T.J Neidhart of Shoreham Wading River (sec. 11) took 3rd at 145 pounds. Billy Coggins of Rocky Point (sec. 11) defeated Neidhart twice this season at the Eastern States Classic finals and the section 11 finals and he may be the wrestler to beat in this weight class. Clayton Reeb of Cheektowaga (sec. 6) is a returner to the NY state tournament.

Other wrestlers to watch: John Paris of Amsterdam (sec. 2) can be a factor at 160 pounds.

171 pounds

Angelo Malvestuto of Niagra Wheatfield (sec. 6) took 3rd in NY State at 171 pounds and he is undefeated this season. The same can be said for Josue Mendez of Brentwood (sec. 11) who placed 6th in NY State at 171 pounds last season.  Jesse Villella of Chenango Forks (sec. 4) returns to this tournament. He competed at 160 pounds last year and was one round away from placing.

Other wrestlers to watch: Nick Baxter of Spencerport (sec. 5) and Joe Kavanagh of Wantagh (sec.8).

189 pounds

Undefeated Austin Meys of Shenendehowa (sec. 2) is the most unbeatable wrestler in this tournament. He was a state champion at 171 pounds last season. Christian Boley of Brockport (sec. 5) returns as 3rd place finisher at 189 pounds last season. Also returning as a place winner at 189 pounds is Zach Buonaiuto of Miller Place (sec.11). Two undefeated wrestlers entering this tournament are Matt Loew of Wantagh (sec.8) and Homer Dobransky of Carthage (sec. 3).

Other wrestlers to watch: Brendan Dwyer of Pittsford (sec. 5) returns to the tournament…this year as the first alternate behind Boley. 

215 pounds

Paul Glover of Spencerport (sec. 5) returns as the defending state champion at 215 pounds. His main competition should come from undefeated Steven Butler of Port Jervis (sec. 9) who placed 4th in NY State at 189 pounds last year. Zeal McGrew of Burnt Hills (sec. 2) is 41-1 this year and should be in the mix at 215 pounds in Albany. Section 11’s Ernest James of Longwood is 40 -1 this season.

Other wrestlers to watch: Connor Horl of Garden City (sec.8) is undefeated this season. Eric Wooley of Hauppauge has only one loss this season, and that was in the section 11 finals to Ernest James of Longwood.

285 pounds

Ken Altarac of LaSalle (sec. 2) is the defending state champion at 285 pounds. Also returning is last year’s 4th place finisher at 285 pounds J.D. Zitone of Port Jervis (sec. 9). Junior James Donner of Niagra Wheatfield (sec. 6) is 36-1 this season and should be in the mix. Enzo Zagari of Spencerport (sec. 5) and Nick Auriemma of St. Anthony’s (CHSAA) have been highly ranked this season.

1 thought on “The Preview: 2009 NY State D1 H.S. Wrestling Tournament”

  1. in your section for 125 you have some wrong information. casey lanave from chenango forks (IV) did not place 2nd at 119 in 2008. he placed 5th and technically he placed 5th in 2007 too because stephen russ from catholic school placed 3rd. he was only a runner-up in the state once at that was in 2006 when he lost to paul liguori from wantagh. just letting you know.

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