Bristol Eastern wrestling dominates in win over Middletown

Published on Thursday, 4 January 2018 20:27
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Staff report

The Bristol Eastern wrestling team hosted interleague rival Middletown at home on Wednesday night and entered another dominant performance into the the win column with a 63-6 thrashing of the 14th-ranked Blue Dragons.

The Lancers are currently ranked No. 2 in Connecticut behind perennial state power Danbury High School.

The dual meet started at the 113-pound weight class, where senior Jordon Champagne made quick work of freshman Dylan Sassu by pinning him in 1:35 with a cradle.

The 120 bout saw veteran utility wrestler, senior Noah Corliss, earn a dominant 12-4 major decision over T.J. Pawlack.

At 126, Eastern suffered one of only two losses on the night. In a highly competitive match, Kalil Shabazz outlasted Carson Sassu by a score of 7-1.

Sassu started the bout with a bang, looking like he had secured an inside trip for a feet-to-back takedown within seconds of the opening whistle, but Shabazz scrambled out of the situation and secured a takedown of his own before Sassu could establish control. Shabazz used his speed and strength to control the bout and ended up securing the win.

It was the third time the two wrestlers have faced each other since last season, with Sassu leading the series 2-1.

Entering the 132-pound bout, Eastern was leading by a score of 9-3. Gabe Soucy took an 8-1 decision for the Lancers over Ryan Conklin.

After a scoreless first period, Soucy chose the bottom position to begin the second and quickly hit a switch for a reversal and started to pile up some points with a pair of two-point near falls and another takedown after Conklin managed an escape midway through the period. The bout score was 8-1 and that is where it remained.

The most competitive match of the night saw junior Noah Piazza pitted against senior captain Martino Pusz. Pusz has some accolades to his credit, having placed in the Class L tournament in the past.

Pusz secured a takedown in the first period and managed to ride Piazza out for a 2-0 lead. He chose the bottom position for the second period, but could not manage to separate himself for an escape.

Piazza chose the bottom position for the third. After running through several sit-outs and a couple of Granby rolls, Piazza was free. Within seconds he hit a blast double to secure the takedown and a 3-2 lead for the win.

Eastern’s roll had started and the points piled on with seven pins and a win by forfeit.

The following wrestlers won by pin: Diego Fernandez at 145 (:36), Justin Marshall at 152 (1:59), Dylan Levesque at 170 (:33), Tyler Varasconi at 182 (3:52), Trinidad Gonzalez at 195 (2:15), Hidekal Manguel at 220 (:26) and Andrew Cercone at 285 (2:55). Michael Barrett was a winner by forfeit in the 160 class.

The final bout of the night was a see-saw battle between Trent Thompson and Eli Cyr at 106.

With the score knotted at 9-9 in the third, Thompson gave Cyr the escape to set up a battle on their feet to close out the match. With the score now 10-9, Thompson gave up a takedown to his back and the loss with a score of 15-9.

Thompson was on the winning side earlier in the evening, when he took on Mike Rapuano of Hale-Ray High School. Rapuano is competing as a one-man team with the Middletown High wrestling team. Thompson was dominant, securing a 6-1 win with two takedowns and a reversal against one escape for Rapuano.

“I think was saw some good things tonight,” Lancers coach Bryant Lishness reported. “Getting Thompson, Corliss and Varasconi in the lineup was great for us. They are working really hard in the room and we really wanted to give them some opportunity in the varsity lineup.

“Thompson was great. He had two quality kids in Cyr and Rapuano. Both should be Open qualifiers. He made some mistakes against Cyr, but they are fixable. They are things he can improve on and grow from. His match against Rapuano showed us a lot about where he is at and how bright his future is.

“Corliss is our utility guy. He is a very experienced kid. He has placed in Class L in the past. He has been a varsity wrestler his whole career. We just have a lot of depth at our lower weights and getting him in consistently has not been easy. He placed at the Berlin Tournament a couple weeks ago when Sassu was out. He won today. He will definitely compete for a placement at the B.C. Invite this weekend. He is a luxury to have as a coach and it is important to get him in the lineup when we can.

“Varasconi has been working hard in the room. He is a senior who we wanted to give some opportunity to see how he handled it. Keegan is a little banged up right now, so the timing was right. Tyler went out and pinned another experienced senior tonight for his first varsity win. Great for him.”

Posted in The Bristol Press, Bristol Eastern on Thursday, 4 January 2018 20:27. Updated: Thursday, 4 January 2018 20:30.