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CaptionCloseThe New York state wrestling champions begin Friday at Times Union Center.The event brings together the top high school grapplers from around the state for a two-day tournament that concludes Saturday night with the finals.Here are five storylines...

State wrestling: 5 storylines to watch

CaptionCloseThe New York state wrestling champions begin Friday at Times Union Center.The event brings together the top high school grapplers from around the state for a two-day tournament that concludes Saturday night with the finals.Here are five storylines...

State wrestling: 5 storylines to watch

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The New York state wrestling champions begin Friday at Times Union Center.

The event brings together the top high school grapplers from around the state for a two-day tournament that concludes Saturday night with the finals.

Here are five storylines to keep an eye on over the weekend:

1. Columbia chases four titles

John Devine (126 pounds) was a runner-up at 120 last winter. Dylan Dubuque (fourth) and Michael Gonyea (sixth) also could be on top by Saturday night after learning what it takes to get there last winter.

Throw in repeat state qualifier Trent Nadeau, and coach Anthony Servidone could be spending a lot of quality time on the Times Union Center floor.

Devine only drew a No. 5 seed, so he'll have his work cut out for him. Really, all four will, despite easy sledding through sectionals, not even allowing a point that wasn't given away to get to neutral position.

Columbia is seeking its first state champion since 2004.

2. The brotherly chase

Maple Hill sophomore Trent Svingala and brother Caleb, a freshman, are a combined 74-0 heading to downtown Albany.

This is Caleb's first state meet (99 pounds), while Trent (106) is a No. 2 seed after placing fourth a year ago.

The siblings, who went to Albany Academy last year, have expansive experience in jiu-jitsu, creating strategy and technique they feel gives them distinct advantages.

They are trying to bring Maple Hill a state title for the first time since 2006.

3. About to be challenged

Ballston Spa's Tyler Barnes, arguably Section II's best pound-for-pound wrestler, is the top seed at 170 pounds in Division I.

Fifth a year ago, the North Carolina State commit earned some late-season forfeits. He likely won't get any breaks this weekend — he'll need four consecutive wins (two Friday, two Saturday) to get crowned.

Barnes also was given freebie wins in the Class A final Feb. 4. Barnes is credited with a 37-0 record off 21 pins and 6 forfeits. He hasn't been pushed since a 5-2 win Jan. 20 against Darrien Roberts of Wyoming Seminary (Pa.) at the Shenendehowa tournament.

4. The only line of defense

The one Section II wrestler defending a state title is Schuylerville's Orion Anderson, a 120-pound junior who won last year at 106.

He's a top seed who will have every chance to follow Shen's Kevin Parker, now at Princeton, in winning consecutive titles.

Before that, Duanesburg's Nick Gwiazdowski, who went on to become a two-time NCAA champion, was the last repeater in 2010-11.

5. Primed for the top spot?

Hadley-Luzerne/Lake George's Jason Hoffman will be going for a state title in his final shot after finishing fourth, second and third across the past three seasons. The 170-pounder is a No. 3 seed with a 19-0 record.

Hoffman had a 2016 full of bad luck. He lost in the semis at the state tournament last year when an opponent's defensive move resulted in a critical two-point takedown. Then Hoffman missed some time with a concussion. Following that, he broke his thigh bone and hurt his knee during a club-wrestling session.

But it's 2017, and Hoffman is more than capable of bringing himself plenty of good fortune.

Of note: Among those also seeded in the top three at their respective weight classes — Brock Delsignore, South Glens Falls (Division I, 99); Kiernan Shanahan, Shenendehowa (Division I, 145); Mike Sutliff, Hadley-Luzerne/Lake George (Division II, 182)

jfranchuk@timesunion.com

Our editors found this article on this site using Google and regenerated it for our readers.

Publish Date : 23 Şubat 2017 Perşembe 18:50

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