Dave Schultz Tragedy….It’s Been 16 Years

American wrestling legend Dave Schultz

Sixteen years ago, the United States lost one its greatest wrestling heroes – Dave Schultz.  On January 26, 1996 Schultz was shot and killed by DuPont heir John E. duPont at the Foxcatcher Wrestling training facility in Newtown Square, PA.  duPont, later convicted and found to be mentally ill, was the sponsor of  Foxcatcher Wrestling.  He died in prison on December 9, 2010.

Perhaps the most decorated wrestler in US history, Schultz, like many other great wrestlers, did not even take up the sport until junior high school.  Schultz’s senior year in high school (1977, Palo Alto, CA) is generally considered the greatest individual season by a high school wrestler in US history.  During that season he won the US Nationals in Greco Roman (open division…against grown men), he pinned a former 2X NCAA champion at an “open” college tournament, and he capped off the season by winning the California HS state title.  Schultz was a 10X World Champion, an Olympic Gold Medalist, and NCAA Champion.

Check out the link below for a recent article by Philly.com which does an outstanding job of Recalling the Schultz – duPont Tragedy.

Blaine Notches 400th Victory!!!

Congratulations to Cornwall Head Wrestling Coach Don Blaine for recording his 400th career victory.  The milestone achievement occurred when his team defeated New Paltz 75-10 this past Sunday at the Highland Duals.  Blaine is the first Section 9 wrestling coach to reach 400 wins and now ranks in the top 15 in New York State history. 

Blaine began his coaching career in 1983 and earned his first victory in December of that year against Wallkill.  Twenty-nine years later he has amassed an incredible record of 402-120-1 including 11 league championships.  Blaine has coached 23 Section 9 champions, 7 state placewinners, and one 2X state champion (Paul Paquin).  In 2011, Coach Blaine was inducted in the the New York State Wrestling Hall of Fame.

What his peers say:
“Congrats to Coach Blaine on his 400th.  He is a great guy and has consistently turned out quality teams.  The Goldback/Dragon Dual is always one of the highlights of our season.  We will continue to do our part to keep him from getting to 500 any time soon!”                             NFA Head Wrestling Coach and fellow Hall of Famer Jeff Cuilty

“Don Blaine is the coach that I try to emulate my coaching style after.  He is a true example of how hard work and dedication pays off into success.” 
                                          Monroe Woodbury Head Wrestling Coach Steve Fischbein

“Congratulations Don.  The 400 wins speak for itself, but the real story is Don Blaine the man.  He has been a great role model for so many kids and other coaches for a long time. The kids that wrestle for Don are hard working, fight till the end, and compete with great sportsmanship …all a direct result of their coach.  Congrats to a good friend.”  
                                           Minisink Valley Head Wrestling Coach Kevin Gallagher 


Weekend Summary

Before I begin to summarize a busy weekend in Section 9 wrestling, I would like to first congratulate NFA’s Johnny Bastone and Roundout Valley’s Ian Morse who both recorded their 100th career victory this weekend.  Bastone earned his milestone with a victory via technical fall versus Ellenville at the Highland Duals while Morse got his 100th win in the quarter-finals of the Gene Brigham Invitational at Minsink Valley.  I would also like to offer congratulations to Washingtonville’s Colin Casey who became his school’s all-time wins leader by recording his 136th career victory en route to earning the 170 pound title at the Beacon Tournament.  Great job guys!

Gene Brigham Invitational @ Minisink Valley:  Host Minsink Valley crowned three champions and edged out Section 11 power Longwood 183-181.5 to take the team title at 2012 Gene Brigham Memorial Wrestling Tournament.  Earning individual titles for Section 9 were Michael Raccioppi (MV, 106), Mason Rambrose (MV, 113), John Hodes (RV, 120), Donald Brown (Middletown, 126), Anthony Sannella (MV, 182), Vinny Nastro (Goshen, 195), and Alex Ortiz (Middletown, 220).  Click below for finals results, awards, and top-5 team standings.  
                                     2012 Gene Brigham Invitational Results

Beacon Wrestling Tournament:  Valley Central and Washingtonville finished first and second, respectively, and each team crowned an individual champion at this weekend’s Beacon Wrestling Tournament.  Valley Central’s Bilal Hasan captured the 182 pound title while Washingtonville’s Colin Casey was the 170 pound champion.  Casey’s victory, the 136th of his career, has earned him the distinction of now being Washingtonville’s all-time wins leader.  Click below for a brief tournament summary.
                                         2012 Beacon Wrestling Tournament

Conklin Memorial Tournament in Carmel:   The Pine Bush Wrestling Team placed second at the Conklin Memorial Tournament on Sunday in Nanuet.  Seven wrestlers placed first: Chris Cuccolo 99, John Stramiello 106, Damon Bennett 113, Max Marie 138, Ryan Sause 145, Pat Sause 160, and Damion Rampe 220.  Three wrestlers placed second: Andrew North 99, Andrew Dutchatellier 120, and Jordan Robles 132.  Damion Rampe also won the award for the most pins in the least amount of time.

Kohl Tournament in Suffern:  Monroe Woodbury crowned two individual champions and won the team title at this weekend’s Kohl Tournament held at Suffern High School.  Vinny Vespa (99) and JP Vandercliff (152) won titles for the Crusaders.  PJ Smoot (113), Dan Circelli (138), AJ Voelker (145), and Jorge Vasco (220) took second while Evan Barczak (99), Brandon Lewis (126), and Drake Barczak (145) earned third place honors for MW.

Highland Duals:  Newburgh Free Academy finished 4-0 in their pool and 106 pounder Johnny Bastone recorded his 100th career victory.  Congrats Johnny!

Edgemont Tournament:  Monticello’s Paul Gomez (126) and Mike D’Abbraccio (285) won titles while Adam Kaiser took 5th at 160.  Tuxedo also competed and received a 2nd place finish from Dylan Lynn at 106.  Dean Stanton placed 4th at 99 and Zach Williams placed 6th at 170 for the Tornadoes.

Weekend Tournament Updates

Kohl Tournament at Suffern (MW, PJ) is now scheduled for Sunday 9:30 AM start.

Gene Brigham Memorial Tournament at Minisink Valley (MV, RV, Middletown, Onteora, Goshen, and Wallkill) is now scheduled for Sunday 9:00 AM start.

Edmont Tournament (Monticello, Tuxedo) is now scheduled for Sunday.

Lansingburgh Tournament (NFA) is still on for Sat./Sun.

Section 9 Refs Selected to Work State Tournament!

Congratulations to Section 9 referees Wayne Carroll, Greg Tavano, and Gunnar DeJong.  All three of these veteran officials have been selected to work the New York State Wrestling Championship Tournament in February.  Jeff Traver, who works both Section 1 and Section 9 matches, has been selected to work the state tournament as well.  Traver, however, will be representing Section 1.  Congratulations and good luck to all four of these outstanding officials!

New Team State Rankings; MW, Warwick, and MV in Top 20!

Glen Irving of the New York State Sports Writers Association has released his new team state rankings.  Monroe Woodbury (13), Warwick (14), and Minisink Valley (18) are all ranked in the top 20 for the Division 1 (large) schools.  Congratulations to all three programs…great job and keep it up!!!  Click below for a link to the complete list.


Wednesday’s Results

Minisink Valley 42 Cornwall 23          Monroe Woodbury 40 Middletown 37
Warwick 60 Valley Central 12             Washingtonville 63 Goshen 24
Eldred-Fallsburg 41 TriValley 32       Ellenville 48 TriValley 26  
Ellenville 39 Eld/Falls 36                    Red Hook 48 Liberty 12   
Red Hook 42 Tuxedo 18                      Rondout Valley 41 Highland 39  
Onteora 63 Chester 12                         Onteora 69 Burke Catholic 12
Saugerties 66 Wallkill 15                     Rondout Valley 39 New Paltz 27