Written by Mineola American Staff Thursday, 20 March 2014 00:00
The Mineola Varsity Wrestling team had a strong finish to a good season. This is a young team that has only four seniors, with two coming into the year with one year experience between them. The real problem they had to overcome was that they were going to have to forfeit at least four weight classes every match, putting the team down by 24 points at the start of each dual meet.
This year’s team had no small boys joining the team so the 99, 106, 113 and the 121-pound weight classes went unfilled which give the opposing team six points for each weight. The boys finished the 9-9 with a team predominately made up of juniors.
The four seniors did a fine job led by team captain Jacob Escobar (19 wins) at 132 pounds, second-year wrestler Lorenzo Gulinao (15 wins) at 120 pounds and Milandip Toor at 145 pounds, who made it to the Nassau County finals. First-year wrestler Christian Martin had 12 wins at 285 pounds.
For the junior varsity squad, eighth-grader Sebastian Domenech at 132 pounds did an excellent job and is a player to watch over the next four years. Freshman Kevin Small (18 wins) at 126 pounds, also filled in on the varsity at the end of the year.
Matt Connolly at 138 pounds did very well along with Dan Reardon at 170 pounds. Sophomores Antonio Gulinao, 138 pounds and Mike Bowen (12 wins) 22 pounds contributed.
Junior Brian Greenberg at 189 pounds sat out the second half of the year due to injury, John Clancy (12 wins) at 145 pounds was a varsity starter and also had injury late in the year that kept him out the county tournament.
James Gerstner (18 wins) at 160 pounds, really sacrificed for the team this year, wrestling his matches at the 170 pound level. Kyle Dunleavy (20 wins) at 152 pounds also had an excellent year finishing fourth in the county. He lost very close heartbreaking matches to teammate James Rodriguez and eventual county champ Erik Rodriguez from Wheatley, just missing a chance at a county title.
Five juniors made it to the county finals with two finishing as county champions and competing at the state tournament in Albany. James Rodriguez (24 wins) at 152 pounds, after winning a 5-4 decision over Dunleavey in the semis, lost a 6-3 match to Eric Rodriguez in the finals.
At 182 pounds, Anthony Sarno, (28 wins) pinned 25 opponents, but also lost in the finals 8-7 in the last 15 seconds to his opponent from Locust Valley. Luigi Athan (15 wins) at 220 pounds, like Gerstner, also moved up a weight class in the county tournament giving him a better opportunity to reach the state tourney. He also lost close 3-1 decision to his opponent from Locust Valley.
At 132 pounds, Peter McCormack (31 wins) had an exceptional year. This was his third time in the county finals having lost close matches in his freshman and sophomore year. He completely dominated his match taking a big lead and then pinning his opponent from Oyster Bay in the second period. McCormack then went up to the state tournament, where he went 1-2.
At 195 pounds, Edien Hincapie (29 wins) had a dominating year. This was his second appearance in the finals having lost by a decision to his sophomore opponent.
This year, Hincapie came out in the county finals very confident and tossed his opponent to his back getting a first period pin to win his first county title.