Great Event, Great Cause


Vinny and Oklahoma State Coach John Smith. Vinny was invited to attend the camp courtesy of Journeyman Wrestling’s Frank Popolizio.

Victory For Vinnny Takedown Tournament a Huge Success

In an incredible day filled with great wrestling and fun for the entire family, over 1000 wrestlers and fans attended Saturday’s Victory For Vinny Takedown Tournament held at Monroe Woodbury High School.  When results become available, they will be posted on this site.  For now, I have decided to put together a brief list of some of Saturday’s highlights (no particular order).


Lisa and Michael Vespa’s intermission speechesIf you didn’t have a tear in your eye, you don’t have a pulse!  
Exhibition match between Jamie Franco and Johnny StramielloFranco, a MW graduate, is curently a 133-pound wrestler for Division 1 Hofstra.  Stramiello just finished his sophomore year at Pine Bush.  He is already a 3X Section 9 champion.  Jamie is one of only a few 5X Section 9 champs, will Johnny be our next?  Franco vs. Stramiello video courtesy of Betsy Veysman from
Michael Vespa hits the “flying squirrel” against AJ VoelkerVinny’s older brother nails the now famous move during an exhibition match with one of Vinny’s current teammates.  FLYING SQUIRREL VIDEO courtesy of Betsy Veysman from
The “masters” match between Al Wolff and Frank GrantonBoth of these gentlemen are in their 50’s but that didn’t stop them from lacing up their shoes and giving the crowd a show.  Granton is a cancer survivor.
Hall of Famer in the dunking booth – Cornwall head coach and NYS Wrestling Hall of Famer Don Blaine takes his turn in the dunking booth.  I still think we would have made more money if we put referee Wayne Carroll (also a Hall of Famer) in the booth!!!!
The Showdown – Johnny Stramiello, 6th in NYS at 106,  and Jay Rodriguez from Wantagh, a state finalist last year at 99, locked up in a gem!  We may get to see this match again….at the end of February in Albany!!!!
Vinny being Vinny – The highlight of the day for many in attendance was a simple and subtle act.  Just being able to watch Vinny have a great time, goof around,  spend some time with family and friends…these are the things that truly matter. 

There are literally dozens of people who contributed their time and money to make this event a huge success.  However, it would be remiss of me if I did not give special recognition to Bob Voelker and John Stramiello.  Quite simply, without the work of Bob and John, this event would have never happened.  Great job guys!