The holiday events are over and it's time for a new set of rankings (combined Division I and Division II). To see the previous ones, the links are here: lightweights, middleweights, heavyweights. Eight different sections have #1 wrestlers this time around.
We appreciate your feedback and will continue to consider all of it, as long as it is done respectfully. Feel free to send us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. Here we go . . .
1. Kelan McKenna (New Hartford - 3)
2. Derek St. James (Gates Chili - 5)
3. Dane Heberlein (Alexander - 5)
4. Dean Raymond (Deposit - 4)
5. Jacori Teemer (Long Beach - 8)
6. Thomas Cox (Deer Park - 11)
7. Alfredo Olmedo (Arlington - 1)
McKenna placed at the state tournament a year ago in Division I and according to the NWCA Scorebook has 12 matches -- and 12 pins. St. James was the lightweight MOW at the Teike Bernabi, which featured a number of tough competitors such as Dylan Arena of Clarence and Mitchell Seaver of Lockport. Heberlein is a decorated youth wrestler who had success a year ago despite being undersized. He's 22-0 thus far with only one regular decision (at 113) and has a tech fall at 106 over a returning Round of 8 grappler from 2013. Raymond also was victorious at a holiday event - the Windsor Christmas tournament. The Deposit grappler wrestled in Albany in 2013, winning a match. He lost at 113 to a state placer early in the year, but at 99 has been dominant, including all bonus wins on his way to the title at Windsor.
Teemer caught our attention with an undefeated performance at the Schoolboy National Duals this spring and he's carried that success over, including a Massapequa Holiday tournament crown and victories over strong wrestlers such as Wantagh's Jonathan Loew. Cox is 16-0 with six pins and some nice offseason results (including a second place showing at the Freak Show). He handed the very tough Adam Busiello of Eastport South Manor his only loss to date. We're well aware that there are a large number of potential stars in the 99 pound ranks in Suffolk, including Anthony Sparacio of North Babylon, Kyle Mock of Huntington, Jake Silverstein of Hauppauge, Mike Ludwig of Northport and James Trezza of Smithtown East to name some.
Olmedo will be a difficult foe for anyone in his senior campaign. If Anthony Sgorrano goes at this weight, the returning state qualifier from South Glens Falls could be a force. In addition, superstar seventh graders Bennie Baker of Newark Valley and Zach Lawrence of Duanesburg have definitely made an impact and were close to making the list. Others to keep an eye on include Christian Gramuglia of Burnt Hills, Dillan Palaszewski of Galway, Orion Anderson of Schuylerville, AJ Burkhart of Waverly, Trent Nadeau of Sweet Home and Anthony Stramiello of Pine Bush.
1. Yianni Diakomihalis (Hilton - 5)
2. Matteo DeVincenzo (Port Jefferson - 11)
3. Vinny Vespa (Monroe Woodbury - 9)
4. Josh Logiudice (Guilderland - 2)
5. Theo Powers (Mexico - 3)
6. Peter Pappas (Plainview - 8)
7. Chris Cirigliano (BGAH - 4)
The first three remain the same as in the last set of rankings. Logiudice and Powers finished first and second at the Kenneth Haines Memorial (although the finals match was a default). Pappas, a former Super 32 Middle School runner up has impressed. Cirigliano had an early loss at 113, but the 2013 state placer returned to form with a strong showing at the Windsor Christmas tournament.
1. Vito Arujau (Syosset - 8)
2. Kyle Quinn (Wantagh - 8)
3. Joe Calderone (Walt Whitman - 11)
4. John Arceri (Huntington - 11)
5. Golan Cohen (Colonie - 2)
6. Johnny Stramiello (Pine Bush - 9)
7. John Twomey (St. Anthony's - C)
The first two haven't changed, however, there was some movement after that. Calderone continues to wrestle well (with nine pins already) and takes over at #3 while Arceri demonstrated that he's capable of big things (even while moving up two weights) with his Windsor title. He edged returning All-Stater Golan Cohen of Colonie. Twomey of St. Anthony's joins the top 7 after a stellar earlygoing, including winning the Danbury Holiday tournament.
New Rochelle's Nick Barbaria unfortunately suffered a season-ending injury. 2012 NYS champion Tony Recco of Lyndonville is someone to watch (23-1 with the loss against the tough Mike Venosa of Victor). Also keep an eye on Minisink Valley's Gerard Daly, NHSCA All-American Andrew McFarland of Carthage and a bronze medalist in 2013, Ryan Hetrick of Southwestern.
1. Nick Piccininni (Ward Melville - 11)
2. Bryan Lantry (Wayne - 5)
3. Luis Weierbach (Hoosick Falls - 2)
4. Nick Casella (Locust Valley - 8)
5. Dylan Booth (Port Jervis - 9)
6. Ralph Mateo (Midlakes - 5)
7. James Szymanski (Shoreham Wading River - 11)
The order is slightly different behind #1 Nick Piccininni here, with one new name in the mix. Lantry has continued to cruise, including a victory up at 126 pounds over multi-time state placer Ryan Snow of General Brown. Szymanski is the newcomer, as he has put together a strong start, including a quality win over NYS placer Jesse Dellavecchia of East Islip last weekend. Casella took a loss (at 132 pounds to another wrestler in the rankings), while Booth was second at an out-of-state event. St. Anthony's Ben Lamantia is right on the verge of the rankings as are Fulton's Mitchell Woodworth, a state qualifier last year off to a 22-0 start, past state placer Drew Marra of Olean and Rome Free Academy's Dandre Norman, who has already topped a pair of 2013 All-State wrestlers this year during his undefeated run. Jon Errico of Byram Hills is another wrestler to watch.
1. Travis Passaro (Eastport South Manor - 11)
2. Alex Delacruz (Ossining - 1)
3. Kellen Devlin (Amherst - 6)
4. Anthony Orefice (Lockport - 6)
5. Blake Retell (Shaker - 2)
6. Joe Russ (St. Anthony's - C)
7. Da'mani Burns (Newburgh Free Academy - 9)
There isn't change in the top part of this list since last time. Devlin has not been held to a regular decision yet, according to the NWCA Scorebook. Da'mani Burns of Newburgh Free Academy has looked very strong, with his one setback coming in a hard fought match with Delacruz. There are a number of others on the radar, such as East Meadow's Adam Smith, a returning Nassau finalist, who went up to 132 to defeat returning Section 8 champion Owen Bachelder and has double digit pins. Dylan Wood of Walton won the Windsor tournament and is someone to keep tabs on this season after qualifying for Albany last year. Ricky Stamm of Division has had a stellar campaign so far, including a tight win over returning qualifier PJ Smoot of Monroe Woodbury in the Massapequa Holiday tournament. Ryan Snow of General Brown, Barton Peters of Brockport and Corey Jamison of Huntington all took losses last weekend, but have the experience and track record to contend.
1. William Koll (Lansing - 4)
2. Sean Peacock (Midlakes - 5)
3. John Muldoon (Pearl River - 1)
4. Chris Mauriello (Hauppauge - 11)
5. Saidyokub Kahramonov (New Utrecht - P)
6. Sean O'Hagan (Sachem North - 11)
7. Mike D'Angelo (Commack - 11)
Sean O'Hagan announced his presence with a fall against returning state placer Mike D'Angelo a few weeks ago and has continued his pin parade, tallying 12 so far. There simply aren't enough spots here, as a number of high quality wrestlers could easily be on the list. Among them are Tonawanda's Cody McGregor, Salem's Carter Merecki, Arlington's Nick Tolli, Penfield's Frankie Gissendanner, Islip's Brad Wade, Minisink Valley's Chris Truglio and Ithaca's Richie Burke.
1. Tristan Rifanburg (Norwich - 4)
2. Matt Caputo (North Rockland - 1)
3. Brandon Lapi (Amsterdam - 2)
4. Sam Ward (Locust Valley - 8)
5. Curtis Grant (Elmira - 4)
6. Mike Raccioppi (Minisink Valley - 9)
7. Jimmy Leach (Eastport South Manor - 11)
We have our first new #1. With Renaldo Rodriguez-Spencer departing for 145, Rifanburg grabs the poll position. He wrecked the field at the Windsor Christmas Tournament and is poised to compete in the state finals for the fourth time. Lapi, a three-time state placer, dropped a match by one point (at 145) against returning bronze medalist Joey Butler of Burnt Hills, however he has been impressive wrestling anywhere from 138 to 152. There are a few new entries - returning Division I placer Curtis Grant of Elmira (whose one loss was an 8-6 decision to Rifanburg) and Eastport South Manor's unbeaten Jimmy Leach. There might be a shakeup here as Caputo and Raccioppi are in the same group at the Union-Endicott Duals this weekend, along with tough wrestlers like Hilton's Lou DePrez and Rocky Point's James Matias. It's likely that Freddie Dunau will appear on the list again, however, he has yet to wrestle this year. Danny Graham of West Seneca East, Laken Cook of Ilion, Codie Gillette of Saranac, Justin Cooksey of MacArthur, Dakota Gardner of Fredonia and Columbia's John McHugh, who recently picked up his 150th win, are among those also on the radar.
1. Renaldo Rodriguez-Spencer (Cheektowaga - 6)
2. Vincent DePrez (Hilton - 5)
3. Joey Butler (Burnt Hills - 2)
4. Tommy Dutton (Rocky Point - 11)
5. Jordan Torbitt (Whitney Point - 4)
6. Jakob Restrepo (Sachem East - 11)
7. Blaise Benderoth (North Rockland - 1)
Rodriguez-Spencer moves to the head of the class at 145. Our explanation for the rest of the order remains the same as last time, however, we fully realize that there could be major changes after the U-E Duals as DePrez, Dutton and Benderoth all sit in the same bracket. Butler will also be at the event and could meet any of those wrestlers in later rounds. Rocco Russo of Frontier, a three-time state qualifier, has put together a solid season again. Torbitt hasn't yet appeared at this weight, but we were told that he likely will. Addison's Israel Byler jumped onto the radar with his championship at Windsor (and a 20-0 season). Young gun Jason Hoffman of Hadley Luzerne/Lake George also could make an impact.
1. Louis Hernandez (Mepham - 8)
2. Frank Garcia (Norwich - 4)
3. Angelo Kress (Columbia - 2)
4. Jesse Porter (Shenendehowa - 2)
5. Ryan Kromer (Lewiston Porter - 6)
6. Dennis Ferro (East Islip - 11)
7. Anthony DePrez (Hilton - 5)
There isn't much change here, with the exception of DePrez joining at #7. General Brown's Tyler Silverthorn has come on strong in the postseason in the past and we wouldn't be surprised if he did so again.
1. Corey Rasheed (Longwood - 11)
2. Dan DeCarlo (Port Jervis - 9)
3. Zach Colgan (Johnson City - 4)
4. Alex Smythe (Eden - 6)
5. Konstantin Parfiryev (James Madison - P)
6. Connor Lawrence (Duanesburg - 2)
7. Derek Holcomb (Newark Valley - 4)
A pair of Section 4 standouts dropped from 170 pounds and looked very good in their debuts at 160. Colgan, a returning state fourth placer, captured the Teike Bernabi title, while Holcomb did the same at the Kenneth Haines Memorial. Colgan defeated Clarence's Nate Schwab in the championship round. We expect Schwab to be formidable, along with Peru's Jordan Bushey, who lost a tough match up at 170 against Triston Engle at the Mountain Duals. We are also watching wrestlers like Jaison White of Jericho and Max Lloyd of Palmyra Macedon, among others.
1. Burke Paddock (Warsaw - 5)
2. Steve Schneider (MacArthur - 8)
3. Jake Weber (Clarence - 6)
4. Ryan Marszal (Unatego - 4)
5. Jake Ashcraft (Burnt Hills - 2)
6. Triston Engle (Dolgeville - 3)
7. Sonny McPherson (Indian River - 3)
Paddock and Schneider remain in the first two slots and Weber climbs the ladder to third with a stellar campaign to date. Marszal, a state placer at 182 a year ago, has made the move to 170, where he topped McPherson in overtime in the Windsor finals. Ashcraft also beat McPherson (who topped All-Stater Franky Nassivera, another wrestler to watch). Engle has been dominant. Also, look out for East Islip's Erik Adon, a returning Suffolk runner up who has been impressive so far and Sachem East's Michael Pistone.
1. Christian Dietrich (Greene - 4)
2. Brett Perry (John Jay East Fishkill - 1)
3. Nick Gallo (Schalmont - 2)
4. Daniel Smith (South Jefferson - 3)
5. Collin Pittman (Spencerport - 5)
6. Mark Tracy (Sachem East - 11)
7. Trey DuVall (Addison - 5)
Dietrich and Perry remain at the top, while Gallo joins the fray at 182. Smith's head-to-head win keeps him ahead of Pittman. (Both won holiday tournaments). Tracy has defeated a number of solid opponents and has kept an unblemished record. DuVall, who made the medal stand in Albany a year ago, was the runner up to Dietrich at the Windsor tournament. Robert Ng of Plainedge, a round of 8 finisher at the Times Union Center in 2013, was also a strong consideration, along with Warsaw's Aaron Paddock, who has 16 pins in 21 matches.
1. Levi Ashley (Shenendehowa - 2)
2. Reggie Williams (Johnson City - 4)
3. Nick Weber (Kings Park - 11)
4. Ben Honis (Jamesville-Dewitt - 3)
5. Trent Egenlauf (Spencerport - 5)
6. Nathanael Rose (Eagle Academy - P)
7. Wayne Burt (Colonie - 2)
You often hear people say that rankings don't matter because things always get settled on the mat. That's what happened this past weekend at the Teike Bernabi tournament. In a stacked class, Ashley won the event with victories over Williams, Egenlauf and Lancaster's James Empfield. (Williams beat Egenlauf and Empfield). Weber, Honis and Burt all continued their winning ways. Logan LaFlamme of South Jefferson is someone to keep tabs on as is Andrew Grella of Beacon who has 11 pins during his undefeated start (and all of them came in less than a minute and a half).
1. Rich Sisti (Monsignor Farrell - C)
2. Ryan Wolcott (Waverly - 4)
3. Sam Eagan (Churchville-Chili - 5)
4. Marshall Taylor (Lockport - 6)
5. Tyler Schaefer (Pittsford - 5)
6. Rob Kelly (Monroe Woodbury - 9)
7. Anthony Puca (Huntington - 11)
This class can be ordered in so many different ways, with so many different wrestlers. Sisti and Wolcott are undefeated and at the top after state championship and runner up performances in 2013, respectively.
However, it becomes a little less clear afterwards. Eagan lost to Schaefer two weeks ago, but has a victory over Taylor. In turn, Taylor and Schaefer split a pair of bouts last weekend, with Taylor coming out on top in the Teike Bernabi title contest.
Meanwhile, Kelly is unbeaten. Puca gave Wolcott a rare difficult match as he took the Waverly wrestler to overtime in the finals at Windsor. Tappan Zee's John Hartnett, a returning state qualifier, has been solid. Suffolk County could have a number of other entries here as Craig Hinrichs of Islip has impressed, as has Fargo All-American Rafal Rokosz of Southampton. Speaking of Fargo All-Americans, James Bethel of Saugerties continues to roll through the competition and will be someone to watch. Vincent Feola of Walt Whitman made the podium at the Super 32 Challenge.
1. James O'Hagan (Seaford - 8)
2. Connor Calkins (Alfred-Almond - 5)
3. Mike Manni (Tappan Zee - 1)
4. Ian James (Greece - 5)
5. Austin DiCerbo (Colonie - 2)
6. Jacob Morris (Canastota - 3)
7. Trevor Gibbons (Carthage - 3)
The top four are intact from the last version and DiCerbo moves up after his Windsor title. Morrisville Eaton's Wyatt Morris has yet to compete, but fellow Section 3 wrestler Jacob Morris has been outstanding. Trevor Gibbons of Carthage, who won a bout in Albany last year and had a strong early season, moves onto the list. Returning state qualifiers Andrew Brinser of Union-Endicott, Peter Strassfield of Southampton and Nolan Terrance of Massena all could go far. In addition, Tim Gungor of Massapequa, NHSCA All-American Edwin Rubio of John Glenn and Nikola Cejic of Johnson City are among those who have had fast starts.
Thank you once again to the contributors all around the state. Special thanks to Mike Carey for all his amazing work.