NYS Division 1 Tournament Preview

Division 1

Lainez vs Ryder in their ESC semifinal
Lainez vs Ryder in their ESC semifinal

99 Pounds – The top 5 finishers from the 2016 Eastern States Classic are in this bracket! Section 11 sophomore Dylan Ryder was the ESC champion at this weight and has to be considered one of the favorites here.  Ryder’s ESC finals opponent was Section 5’s Greg Diakomihalis who will be looking to avenge his 3-2 loss to Ryder.  Middletown’s Oscar Lainez defeated Section 2’s Trent Svigala and finished 3rd at the ESC and is perhaps the most dangerous wrestler in the weight.  PSAL’s Brandon Nunez can factor here as well as Sectio 11 wildcards Anthony Sciotto and Preston Maucere.

106 Pounds – No mystery here…Section 11’s Adam Busiello is ranked #1 in the nation by InterMat and FloWrestling and is the clear favorite here.  Busiello was last year’s 99 pound NYS champ and  is undefeated this season including a dominating performance at the Eastern States Classic.  Even without Busiello, this would be a great weight and it will be hotly contested for top 6 placement.  Last year’s NYS #3 at 99 is Mitch Seaver from Section 6 and he will definitely be in the hunt here as well as ESC placers Justin Lopez (S1), Michael Gonyea (S2), Kevin Meloni (S11), and Alex Samson (S5).  Let’s not forget about the Section 9 champ from Minisink Valley, Tyler Lynch, who beat Lopez at ESC as well as Monroe Woodbury freshman Marco Vespa who earned a wildcard and notched a win over Lynch earlier in the year.

Greiner vs. Cox at ESC
Greiner vs. Cox at ESC

113 Pounds – This weight boasts 3 wrestlers who have held national rankings this year.  Section 11’s Tommy Cox finished 3rd in NYS last season and was an ESC finalist this year.  Anthony Cirillo, also from Suffolk County, placed 3rd at ESC by defeating Section 3 champ Kellan McKenna.  McKenna is a former NYS champ. Minisink Valley’s Connor Greiner finished 4th at ESC and has a good chance at medaling as well as well at Section 1’s Anthony Sulla who finished 6th at ESC.  113 also has two wrestlers who finished the season undefeated in Section 2’s Trent Nadeau (45-0) and Section 8’s Justin Vines (39-0).  Section 9 has a second entry here as Monroe senior Anthony Stramiello grabbed one of the at large bids!

120 Pounds – Year after year, the 120 pound weight class is loaded – this year is no exception.  Section 11’s Anthony Sparacio will be the top seed and has finished the season undefeated.  In the S11 finals Sparacio defeated 2015 state finalist Jake Silverstein.  Other returning state placewinners at 120 include Tito Colom (CHSAA), Austin Hertel (S5), Anthony Argentieri (S5), and Kyle Mosher (S8).  Randy Earl from Section 1 placed at ESC this year and Section 9 is well represented by a very scrappy Jarred Greiner from Minisink Valley. Long Beach (S8) has two entries here in Matt Maquet and Josh Bourne – both can contend for a medal in Albany.

126 Pounds – 2X NYS champ from Section 8 Jacori Teemer is the favorite here – but not by much!  This weight is loaded!  Section 11 champ John Arceri was the NYS champ at 113 last year and, like Teemer, is undefeated this season. Section 8 wildcard Alex Vargas is tough as nails and will also contend for a title here as will ESC placers Ben Tepperman (S11),  Matt Seitz (C), Mike Venosa (S5), and Monroe Woodbury’s Kevin Kelly.  Kelly saw limited action this year due to a preseason injury however the Section 9 senior seems to be peaking at the right time!

132 Pounds – This weight has 2 nationally ranked wrestlers and they are both from Section 8!  2X NYS champion Vito Arujau from Syosset is ranked 2nd in the nation by Intermat and would have to be considered the heavy favorite here.  Peter Pappas lost to Arujau in the S8 finals and he is currently ranked 20th in the nation by Intermat.  An all Section 8 final is likely here. Catholic school champ Hector Colom is as dangerous as they come and should do very well in Albany. Section 9 is represented by Minisink Valley sophomore Dom Vetrano. Vetrano only started wrestling last year and is loaded with talent.  His lack of experience may put him at a disadvantage up at states but his raw athleticism may surprise an opponent.  This will be a great experience for him.

138 Pounds – One name will do – Yianni!  Yianni Diakomihalis from Section 5 is a 3X NYS champion and is currently the #1 ranked 138 pound wrestler in the country.  There are definitely some very tough wrestlers in this bracket but if

Cadet World Champ Yianni Diakomihalis

Yianni doesn’t win it will make national headlines.  Perhaps his toughest competition will come from Section 1 stud Matt Grippi.  Grippi’s only loss this season has been Yianni at ESC.  Section 5 wildcard Parker Kropman is also a returning NYS placewinner and will make noise here.  Section 9 is very well represented at 138 in Charlie Johnson from Warwick.  Johnson is a transfer from PA where he placed 5th in the AA tournament last year.  A few others to watch here include Section 11 champ Brett Brice and Section 4’s Isaiah Colgan.

145 Pounds – Returning NYS champion Frankie Gissendanner from Section 5 is nationally ranked and is definitely the favorite at 145 … he will not have a cakewalk though!  Section 1 champ Brady Robin took Gissendanner to OT at the Eastern States and is definitely ready for a rematch!  Section 1 also has another contender at 145 in Connor Melbourne who lost a hotly contested 8-7 decision to Robin in their state qualifying tournament. Section 11 has two studs entered here in John Busiello (S11 champ) and Jack Taddeo (wildcard).  One of Busiello’s losses this season was to Section 9 champ Evan Barczak from Monroe Woodbury.  Barczak is looking to improve upon his 6th place NYS finish from last year.

Ryan Ferro
Warwick’s Ryan Ferro

152 Pounds – Section 9 Champion Ryan Ferro finished 3rd in NYS last year and is definitely one of the favorites here at 152. Ferro, a 3 sport athlete, took 2nd at this year’s ESC  is usually just hitting his wrestling “stride” in February.  He has three losses this year and none of the losses are to a wrestler from this bracket. Section 11 champ Chris Mauriello was a NYS champ two years ago and placed 6th at 160 last year.  He will be a force at 152.  Section 1’s Grant Cuomo is as tough as anyone and will contend here. Justin Klein (S5), Tristan Almeter (S6), and Tyrese Byron (S8) are a few others to watch at this weight.

160 Pounds – This is another weight where a Section 9 wrestler has a legitimate chance to capture a state title.  Minisink Valley senior AJ Aeberli placed 5th at this weight last year and came in 4th at this year’s ESC.  However, in order to get to the top step of the medal stand Aeberli will have to defeat a few very tough wrestlers.  Adam Santoro (C) was this year’s ESC champ and defeated Aeberli along the way to his title, plus we have Ricky Stamm from Section 8 who has split decisions with Aeberli this season.  Section 5 champ Tristan Ierlan is an awesome athlete and has only been defeated once this year – he will definitely contend for a title.

170 Pounds – Four of the top six finishers from this year’s Eastern States Classic are in this bracket but the heavy favorite to win here is definitely Hilton junior Louis Deprez (S5).  Deprez is a returning NYS champion and is currently ranked #8 in the nation by InterMat.  Tyler Barnes (S2), Nunzio Crowley (S1), and Marcus Bisono (S11) are all very tough and will likely find their way to the medal stand.  Section 9 will be represented by Wallkill junior Mike Fekishazy who is 39-1 this season and his only loss came at 182 pounds.  Fekishazy is a grinder and we should not be surprised if we see him on the medal stand on Saturday.

Elfstrum vs. Frank at Jerry McGuire Duals
Elfstrum vs. Frank at Journeymen Classic

182 Pounds – The 182 pound weight class is as deep as it has ever been for the NYS tournament.  There is a clear favorite in nationally ranked, Princeton bound Kevin Parker (InterMat # 14) from S2, but there are several wrestlers in the bracket that will definitely give him a handful.  Two of those who will be looking to take down Parker are from Section 1 in Alex Melikian and Evan Frank.  Section 5 also has two entries here and both have the potential to place.  Mike Spallina from Hilton was the Section 5 champ and Cam Calderelli from Brockport received a wildcard.  Section 9 champion Kendall Elfstrum should not be overlooked here!  The Monroe Woodbury junior has had a great season including a 7th place finish at the ESC where he defeated Tyreek Bromley (S8) while Section 4 champ Tom Mackay placed 5th at the ESC and will definitely be in the medal hunt here as well.

195 Pounds – At the 195 pound weight class we have another Princeton-bound, nationally-ranked, returning state champion as the favorite in Section 11’s Christian Araneo.  He is ranked #6 in the nation by Intermat and has finished the season at a perfect 38-0.  One of Araneo’s biggest challenges this year came at the ESC when he defeated Section 1 champ Mike Dinardo by a 5-3 margin.  A rematch in Albany could possibly be the state final! Another undefeated wrestler, Dylan Dubuque from Section 2, as well as Section 5 champ Jacob Sweet will definitely contend for medals.  Section 9 is once again very well represented in Wallkill senior Garrett Betcher.  He, along with Paul Brachfield from S8, are definitely worth keeping an eye on!

McShea vs Robinson at ESC
McShea vs Robinson at ESC

220 Pounds – Our second to last weight class is very solid this year and Section 9 has two entries here that could be in the mix for the top prize!  S9 champ Nick McShea from Monroe Woodbury finished 2nd in NYS last year at 195 but has decided to bump up to 220 this year for the post season.  McShea has split decisions this season with Goshen junior Ryan Ellefsen who seems to get bigger, stronger, and better every time he steps onto the mat!  McShea’s other loss this season came at ESC to Section 11 champ Terron Robinson who is the top seed here.  Section 5 champ William Bolia is 40-1 this season and should definitely place high in Albany.  Section 2 also has two very capable wrestlers at 220 in former NYS placer Joe Messare and 2016 ESC placer Garreck Golish. Section 8’s Arjuna Bello is also an ESC placer and could make some noise here.

285 Pounds – Section 11 champ Edwin Rubio finished 2nd in NYS last season at this weight and he is currently ranked #10 in the nation by InterMat.  While certainly the favorite on paper, few people expect the undefeated Rubio to run away with the crown here.  Section 5 champ Cameron Rohr is also undefeated and has been dominating this season recording 24 first period pins! One of Rubio’s closest wins came over Section 8 champ Michael Curiel at ESC where Rubio squeaked out a 3-2 win.  Section 9 champ Joe Humphrey from Middletown pushed Curiel to the limit at ESC eventually dropping a 3-1 sv decision.  Section 1 champ Mike Larm notched a win over Humphrey at Eastern States and will also be in the mix here as well!

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