WARNING: You don't want to take bottom against James Catapano!!! When you do, bad thing happens, as four foes found out the hard way during the course of the last three days....
Tied at two apiece in his 6U 49-pound title bout against Boston Nelson (5th at the 2021 Kick-off Classic in November), the East Northport resident would control of the bout in the 2nd period when he titled his opponent for a full set of near-fall to carry the commanding 5-2 advantage into the final 1:00 of duration....Fending off several promising top attempts by the opposition, the VHW-Trained youngster added a reversal in the last :04 of of the 3rd to account for the 7-2 decision outcome!
The win over Nelson was the second of only two appearances that went the distance for the Suffolk standout....In the quarterfinals, he fought back from an early 2-1 (end of the 1st) deficit by striking for a TD and then a turn (pancake) to propel himself to the 5-3 advantage versus Ryzen Rogers....Catapano would then escape and tack on one additional takedown to round out his 8-4 decision!
In his other two bouts, he utilized two TDs, a reversal, and three sets of swipes (all for the full count) to post a 15-0 tech fall over Colson Beckley, in his opening round bout before later horsing 2021 KO Classic Bronze medalist, Cohen Utesch, to, his back for the stick at the 52-second mark of their semifinal match-up!
Having now won the first two legs of the "Roller World of Wrestling" Series (cruised at the KO Classic--two pins, an 8-0 MD, and a 9-2 decision in the title bout), Catapano is now well-positioned to become the first NYer to ever win a vaunted Trinity Award!!!
Jace Rooney does not lose often; so when it does happen, it makes an impression and creates a drive for vengeance that is second to none...
Pitted in a rematch of the 2021 KO semifinal against Iowan, Johnathan Thompson (2021 Super 32 Youth 5th; 2021 USAW Folk Nationals 4th; 2021 KO Classic titlist) the East Islip boy made amends for his 6-5 loss this past November when demonstrated tremendous defense down the stretch to hang on for a 5-4 decision over his nemesis...
A clash of the #2 [Thompson] and #3 ranked wrestlers in the land per the Mobbin' Media polls, Rooney would draw first blood with a takedown approximately half a minute into the 1st period, but found himself trailing 3-2 after allowing an escape and TD in the last :15 of the opening stanza!
Scoring the only points of the middle 90 seconds, the Legacy Dragons representative [Rooney] would escape with 58 seconds to go in the 2nd period and then regained the lead when he converted his second takedown of the match in the last 20 ticks to hold the 5-3 cushion...
Thompson would get his E1 at the onset of the 3rd and was relentless with this attacks; but alas, the escape was all he could muster, as Rooney did not relent under the constant pressure...
Note: Following the conclusion of the match, some shenanigans ensued after Thompson shoved and repeatedly charged towards/put his finger in the face of the New Yorker....As a response, Rooney defended himself by swatting (no contact) in the direction of his rival...Initially, the mat official elected to disqualify Rooney. However, upon further review, the tournament director overruled the decision and reinstated the original decision victory!
The triumph over Thompson was not the only impressive dub earned this weekend by Empire Stater; In fact, among his five wins, four came over credentialed opponents!
In the round of 16, he needed just :41 to lock up a cradle for the fall over 2021 USAW Folk Nationals 4th, Cole Martin!
The quarterfinals witnessed him record TDs in the 1st and 3rd periods, accompanied by a boatload of near-fall (8pts in total) en route to a 13-0 MAJOR shutout over 2019 Tulsa 3rd (4th in '20), Colton Hamill...
Up 2-1 at the end of the 1st period of his semifinal bout, Rooney hit a reversal and then blew open the match with a 3pt-NF to grab the commanding 7-1 edge against 2021 Super 32 Youth 5th/Multiple-time USAW Age-Level All-American (Greco National titlist in 2018), Elijah Pagonis....To the credit of the opposition, Pagonis would rally for a pair of reversals of his own in the 2nd and 3rd periods to make the final tally a respectable 7-5!
Rooney, who won a S32 Youth crown in October, now has THREE significant national titles on his resume. He also won gold at the 2020 KO Classic!
Catapano won't be the only New Yorker chasing a milestone in Reno this coming April....
Joining him in their mutual attempt to co-author a new chapter of the NY Wrestling annals will be Shoreham-Wading River phenom, Gavin Mangano.
Ranked 3rd in the state on behalf of the Wildcats (@102) in the most recent NYWN HIGH SCHOOL charts, Mangano would complement the 2021 Kick-off Classic brass ring he won a few months ago, by dominating the field this weekend in the Sooner State...On both occasions, his final victim was the constant variable....
Squaring off with Minnesota's Lincoln Robineau, who entered having won Tulsa Nationals in 2019-2021 (to go along with golds at the 2018 and 2020 KO Classic, and a 2020 Reno Worlds top prize; not to mention the 2021 Super 32 Youth title), the margin of conquest only grew from their previous meeting in November (2-0 decision for Mangano)...
Shooting immediately off the whistle, the SWR superstar wasted no time in jumping out to the initial 2-0 lead, as he transitioned from a single to a double to finish 16 seconds into the highly anticipated clash...He then proceeded to ride out the remaining 1:16 to keep momentum firmly in his corner!
An escape by Mangano 17 ticks into the 2nd period was the only scoring that occurred during the next 90 second span, as the advantage grew to 3-0!
Recognizing the lack of success he has endured during previous situations on bottom, Robideau would opt to begin the final 1:30 from the feet...Steadily moving forward, but not necessarily mounting much in terms of productive offense, calls for stalling warnings from the Minnesotan's coaches went unanswered...For good measure, a dump by Mangano in the last :15 added some insurance as he seized the crown, 5-0!
The "w" over his equally heralded finals foe was the his only victory that did not come by way of bonus point outcome....He commenced his trek to the championship bout by stringing together two falls and a tech over Derek Bush (0:32), Murphy Randolph (15-0), and Colbin Gadbois-Cates (1:25)...
While the opponents would get tougher on paper, there was no stopping Mangano, as he logged his third pin of the tournament in 1:12 against 2021 USAW Folk National bronze medalist/2021 Reno 6th, Mason Todd, in the quarters, and then followed it up with a four-TD, one turn performance as part of a 12-3 major in the semis versus multiple-time three-style national finalist (ex-2021 GR Champion; 2nd in both Folk & Free), Gary High!
Mangano has now recorded FOUR Roller series tournament wins...In addition to the aforementioned 2021 KOC, he also was the last man standing in 2020 at both Tulsa and Reno!
|James Catapano||East Northport||6U||49 Pounds||CHAMPION|
|Jace Rooney||East Islip||10U||61 Pounds||CHAMPION|
|Gavin Mangano||Shoreham||12U||92 Pounds||CHAMPION|
|Camryn Howard||Bellport||12U||120 Pounds||Runner-up|
|Lincoln Brower||Chester||8U||52 Pounds||True 2nd|
|Ray Catapano||East Northport||8U||64 Pounds||3rd|
|Tyler Conzo||Smithtown||12U||76 Pounds||3rd|
|WIlliam Soto||Newburgh||12U||80 Pounds||3rd|
|Finnegan O’Brien||Locust Valley||12U||88 Pounds||3rd|
|Sebastian Andidero||Walden||8U||55 Pounds||4th|