2016 Eastern States Classic Seeds
Wow – it seems like the season just began but we are already at the Eastern States Classic weekend! The ESC, now in its 14th year, has solidified its standing as one of the toughest high school wrestling tournaments in the nation! This year’s event will will feature the strongest field yet with a record 154 teams from 6 states boasting 20 nationally ranked individual wrestlers as well as the number one ranked team in the nation, Wyoming Seminary. SectionIXWrestling.com will be there for every minute of the action and will once again serve as “command central” for the tournament. Below is all of the tournament information you will need to keep you up-to-date with the ESC including a weight class-by-weight class preview! Enjoy!!!
Fan Info Preview Part 1 Preview Part 2
Schedule and Mat Assignments Returning Placewinners
The lightweights are always fun to watch at the ESC. Many competitor here are 1st year varsity wrestlers so it it always interesting to see how they respond to the big stage. Preston Maucere of Deer Park is off to a great start and will definitely be one of the favorites here. Middletown senior Oscar Lainez has made the cut to 101 and looked great in winning the Stan Elinsky last weekend. Two other favorites at 99, Greg Diakomihalis from Hilton and Anthony Sciotto from Rocky Point, just locked horns at the UE Duals with Diakomihalis earning the victory. Others to watch at 99 include Tony Negron from North Babylon, Dylan Ryder from Half Hollow Hills West and Zack Redding of Eastport South Manor. Monroe Woodbury’s Dylan Earl and Vally Central’s Matt Romano could also contend here.
Eastport South Manor freshman Adam Busiello is the #1 ranked 106 pound wrestler in the nation according to Intermat and FloWrestling and should be the odds on favorite to win here. Busiello lost in the finals last year in a barn-burner to Wyoming Seminary’s Beau Bartlett. This year Busiello should receive his stiffest competition from several of New York’s best. AJ Burkhart (Waverly) was a D2 state champ last year while Michael Gonyea (Columbia), Drew Shafer (Pal-Mac), Orien Anderson (Schuylerville), and Justin Lopez (Yonkers) were all state medalists. Kevin Meloni (SWR) placed 8th at the ESC last year and Cahal Donovan (Phoenix), Justin Vines (Wantagh), Justin Hoyle (Sem), and Dan Mauriello (Hauppague) have looked great this year. Section 9 has a few medal contenders at 106 with Monroe Woodbury’s Marco Vespa and Minisink Valley’s Tyler Lynch being our best chances.
Beau Bartlett, last year’s ESC champ at 99 pounds, is entered at 113 this year – Bartlett is still only an 8th grader and is considered one of the best pound-for-pound middle school aged wrestlers in the country! One of Bartlett’s teammates, Benny Baker, a state finalist in NY last year who has transferred to Sem, will be in the mix at 113 as well. NYS has several studs looking to climb the medal stand including 2 wrestlers with national rankings next to their name. Deer Park’s Thomas Cox is ranked #15 at 113 by Flo while New Harford’s Kelan McKenna holds the #18 spot in the national polls. Rocky Point’s Anthony Cirillo and Danbury’s Jakob Camacho will definitely be a force at 113 as will Minisink Valley’s Connor Greiner, Kevin DePalma (Farmingdale), South Jefferson’s Trey LaFlamme, and North Rockland’s Anthony Sulla. Matt Caccamise from Wayne is having a great year as are Jack Bokina (Mattitick), AJ Putt (Maple Grove), Carson Dobozy (Peru), Trent Nadaeu (Columbia), Anthony Stramiello (Monroe Woodbury), and Michael DeBramo (Scarsdale).
Always one of the toughest weight classes at the ESC, 120 is stacked again in 2016. Port Jefferson’s Matteo Devincenzo, Sem’s Jack Davis, Locust Valley’s Jon Gomez and Hauppague’s Jake Silverstein are the class of this year’s field. This weight goes much deeper than that though as several other entries have state titles and placings on their resume. Theo Powers (Mexico) is a former state champ while Anthony Sparacio (North Babylon), Tito Colom (St. Frances), Trey LaFlamme (South Jefferson), Austin Hertel (Hilton), CJ Walz (Central Valley), and Anthony Sulla (North Rockland) are former state placers. John Devine (Columbia), Kyle Mosher (South Side), and Dean Raymond (Deposit-Hancock) are former ESC placewinners and will be in the medal hunt. The Long Beach duo of Josh Bourne and Matt Maquet may also open some yes here while Jarred Greiner is the top ranked 120 pound wrestler from Section 9 and is our best chance for a medal here. John Jay’s Randy Earl is a tough customer and could may some noise at 120 as well.
Like 120, the 126 pound weight class is typically loaded with top notch kids. 2X NYS champ Jacori Teemer from Long Beach, 2X state finalist Peter Pappas from Plainview, and Powerade Champ Jake Riegel from Wyoming Seminary are probably the top 3 here. Ben Tepperman (Hauppague) and Matt Seitz (Monsignor Farrell) are both 2X ESC placewinners and will be in the hunt at this weight. Hunter Dusold is a former NYS champ and has also placed at ESC. Section 9 has a great chance in medaling at 126 with Monroe Woodbury senior Kevin Kelly who is currently undefeated this year. A few other to watch here include Mike Venosa from Victor and Justen O’Neal from North Babylon.
There a couple of studs at 132 but one stands out from the pack – Syosset junior Vito Arujau. Vito is a 2X NYS champ and is the 2nd ranked 132 pound wrestler in the nation according to InterMat. Arujau’s top competition may be from 3X NYS D2 champ Kellen Devlin from Amherst and Trent Olsen from Wyoming Seminary who have both held a national ranking. Parker Kropman from Penfield has placed at both the ESC and NYS Championships and will go deep into the tournament as will St. Francis sophomore Hector Colom. Some other name to watch at 132 include Emerson Block (Pal-Mac), Brad Bihler (Maple Grove), Charles Schultz (New Mildord, CT), Evan Corsco (Longwood), Fred Eckles (Lake Shore), Kevin Knox (Carmel), and Christian Gramuglia (Burnt Hills). Monroe Woodbury’s Anthony Eckerson has been wrestling quite well and may open a few eyes here.
Similar to 132, the 138 pound weight class has plenty of outstanding wrestlers however their is one that “sorta” stands out from the rest. Hilton junior Yianni Diakomihalis is a 3X NYS champion, an ESC champion, and he is the #2 ranked 138 pound wrestler in the nation according to Intermat. Over his career he has also won the Super 32 Challenge, FloNationals, and he also managed to find the time to dabble in some freestyle and win the Cadet World championship in Sarajevo this summer. He should do pretty well here. Also in the medal hunt at 138 will be undefeated Fox Lane sophomore Matt Grippi as well as returning D2 state finalist Jake Kurhals from Pearl River. Wyoming Seminary’s Patrick Munn could potentially medal here and we should also keep an eye on Danbury’s Jeremy Fields who is a 2X CT state champ. Charlie Johnson from Warwick is a transfer from PA where he placed in their AA tournament last year. We can expect him to see him open some eyes in his first trip to ESC. Dylan Wood from Walton is a returning ESC placewinner and will be in the mix as well as Mike Berkowitz from Long Island Lutheran who is a 2X National Prep placewinner. Others to watch for at 138 include Lucas Pincus (Hewlett), Connor Day (Iroquois), Isaiah Colgan (Johnson City), Brett Brice (Longwood), and Brad Dietz (Phoenix).
With 7 returning ESC placewinners, 145 pounds is going to be one of the most hotly contested weights at this year’s Classic! Penfield’s Frankie Gissendanner, ranked 9th in the USA by Intermat, is the defending ESC and NYS champion and will definitely be one of the favorites here but he will have plenty of formidable competition. Lenny Merkin from Poly Prep placed 3rd at the ESC and National Preps last year and is currently ranked #17 in the nation by Intermat. Holland Patent junior Hunter Richard came in 3rd at 138 at ESC last year and was the D2 state champ. The other 4 returning ESC placewinners entered at 145 are Connor Melbourne (JJCR), Jake Hendricks (Wyoming Seminary), Charlie Spada (Long Beach), and John Busiello (Eastport South Manor). Does this sound like a deep weight class? Not done yet! Monroe Woodbury’s Evan Barczak placed 6th in NYS last year and is having a great year! Brady Robin from Arlington is undefeated this year and has a win over Melbourne. Jack Taddeo from Shoreham-Wading River finished 5th in the state last year is is undefeated so far this season. Taylor Benson from Red Hook’s only two losses have been to Robin and Taddeo. Joey Bush from Gouverneur placed 4th in NYS in D2 last year and Justin Peterson from Danbury, CT is a 2X state placewinner. A few other to watch include Kyle Janesky (Albany Academy), Tyler Brazinsky (Johnson City), Chris Ponce (Division), and Brandon Bobe (Washingtonville). 145 is loaded!
Wyoming Seminary’s Mason Manville late scratch from the tournament has really opened up the field at 152. Hauppague senior Chris Mauriello is a former NYS and NHSCAA champion and is one of the favorites to take the title. Perhaps his stiffest competition will come from Section 9’s very own Ryan Ferro from Warwick. Ferro finished 3rd in NYS last season and the 3-sport athlete is just starting to get his wrestling “legs” underneath him. Section 9 has another strong entry at 152 in Eldred/Liberty/Sullivan West standout Noah Curreri. Maine Endwell’s Kobe Garrehy is having a great season and we should also keep our eyes on Tyrese Byron from Long Beach who has been dominating his opponents this year. Some others to watch at 152 include Matt Schwartz (Bellmore), Marlen Lamas (Framingham, MA), Tristan Almeter (Iroquois), Zach Ancewicz (John Glenn), and David Crow (Newark Valley).
One of the favorites at this weight is West Point bound Alex Herringshaw. The Holland Patent senior is a 2X NYS D2 champion and is currently ranked #13 in the nation at 160 by Intermat. Wyoming Seminary senior Will Verallis is a 3X National Prep placewinner and placed at the ESC last year as did Carmel’s Alex Leone who is also entered at 160. Minisink Valley senior AJ Aeberli missed last years Classic due to weather but went on to finish 5th in NYS at 160. He will definitely contend here. Fordam Prep’s Adam Santoro has turned a spectacular off season into a great year thus far and will have his eye on the title as well. Jason Hoffman from Hadley Luzerne/Lake George is a 2X state place winner and Ricky Stamm from Division is no stranger to the podium having placed 5th last season. A few other to keep an eye on at 160 are Shawn Mosca (Carle Place-Wheatly), Mack Berkowitz (Long Island Lutheran), Brett Leonard (New Milford, CT), and Dawson Beers (Walton).
Hilton junior Louie Deprez is the 9th ranked wrestler in the nation at this weight according to Intermat, a NYS D1 champ, and a clear favorite to capture his first ESC title. Deprez has several tough competitors to wade through including the likes of Nunzio Crowley from Eastchester, Will Marcil from Saranac and Trevor Snow from General Brown. The depth at 170 doesn’t stop there! Keep an eye on Sonny McPherson (Indian River), Marcus Bisono from Hauppague, Joe Giorlando of Long Beach, James Hoeg of Mattituck, Jeremy Hughes of MacArthur, Matt Gaiser (Alexander), Tyler Barnes (Ballston Spa), Clifton Wang (Edgemont), Evan Frank (JJCR), and Tyler Green (Schuylerville). There are also two very tough Section 9 wrestlers who will be gunning for the medal stand in Wallkill’s Mike Fekishazy and Washingtonville’s Chris Martin.
This weight has the potential for a final between 2 nationally ranked wrestlers! Wyoming Seminary senior and New York native Christian Dietrich is the 9th ranked wrestler at his weight according to Intermat. He is a 3X ESC finalist and a 2X champion. His most likely opponent will be Princeton bound Kevin Parker from Shenendehowa. Parker is currently ranked 13th in the nation at 182 and was a NYS champion last year. He had a great preseason notching wins over several nationally ranked opponents and has completely dominated the competition thus far this year in NYS. By now means is this a 2-man show though! Adam Melikian from Lakeland Panas placed 5th at this weight last year and Warsaw’s Aaron Paddock placed at 170. The depth of talent at 182 will make this weight particularly exciting! Some of the other wrestlers fighting it out for one of the 8 steps on the medal stand include Tyreek Bromley and Elijah Rodriquez from Long Beach, Tommy MacKay from Elmira, Kendall Elfstrum from Monroe Woodbury, Kevin Morgans from Liberty,Mike Spallina from Hilton, and Bryce Dusold from Locust Valley.
Wyoming Seminary’s Nick Reenan is an absolute hammer! He has won every tournament he’s entered and he is the #1 ranked wrestler in his weight by Intermat and Flo! He is the heavy favorite but will not go untested. Ward Melville senior Christian Araneo is a returning NYS champ at this weight and is ranked nationally at #7 by Intermat. Jack Buell from Sherburne Earlville came in 3rd at 195 at last year’s ESC and will definitely be in the hunt this year as will Mike Dinardo (Mahopac), Tanner Nielsen (Arlington), and Dylan Dubuque (Columbia). Joe Aiello from Westfield is a 2X VA state placewinner and will be a handful for anyone in his bracket. Some others to keep an eye on at 195 include Justin McLee (Washingtonville), Connor Breit (Nanuet), and Jake Speckman (Clarkstown North).
One of the more interesting weights at this year’s ESC, 220 has some established, national level talent blended with some wrestlers trying to get their name on the national radar. Wyoming Seminary’s Will Hilliard is ranked 15th in the nation at this weight and will definitely be considered one of the favorites. Hilliard, a NY native who wrestled for Section 3 Phoenix last year, came in 3rd at last year’s ESC and is having a tremendous season at Sem. He will have plenty of competition if he plans to make the top step of the medal stand though as Ricardo Dawkins (General Brown) and Nick McShea (Monroe Woodbury) are both entered at 220 this year. Warsaw’s Aaron Mann is having a great year and Joe Messare from Burnt Hills placed at ESC last year. Expect both to be in the hunt for a medal. Walt Whitman junior Terron Robinson is having a great year and we definitely can not over look Goshen’s Ryan Ellefen who has pins over Nick McShea and Connor Breit this season! A few others to watch include Mark Rivera (Long Beach), Arjuna Bello (Division), and Andrew Anthony (JJEF).
We have two returning placewinners in the 285 weight class in Edwin Rubio from John Glenn and Joe Humphrey from Middletown. Rubio is the 10th ranked HWT in the nation according to Intermat and is definitely the favorite but Humphrey is legit and will contend for the title. Zach Gifford from Hancock has split to matches against Humphrey this year and was one match away from placing at states last year and Hakim Fleming from Notre Dame was a CT state champ last season. Some other very solid HWT’s who will be in the hunt for a medal include Jake Warren (Burnt Hills), Mike Larm (Brewster), Owen Albanese (Canastota), Jake Beckwith (General Brown), Mike Curiel (Hewlett), and Spencer Matthaei (Locust Valley).