106: #1 Dean Peterson (SJV) d. #3 Vin Santaniello (Brick Memorial) 10-3
113: #5 Hunter Gutierrez (Lacey) md. 2 Ryan Zimmerman (Long Branch) 8-0
120: #1 Richie Koehler (CBA) d. #3 Tyler Pepe (SJV) 8-6
126: #1 Darby Diedrich (Howell) tf. #3 Dyon Womack (Colts Neck) 22-7 4:43
132: #1 Kyle Slendorn (Howell) d. #6 Russell Benson (Raritan) 4-2
138: #1 Jake Benner (Ocean Twp) md. #2 Dan Esposito (Howell) 12-0
145: #2 Luke Gauthier (Lacey) p. #1 Jack Kelly (Wall) 1:48
152: #1 Cole Corrigan (TR South) d. #2 Stanley Wojdylak (Midd North) 7-1
160: #1 Robert Kanniard (Wall) p. #6 Anthony Aquilano (Raritan) 2:59
170: #2 Nick Caracappa (SJV) d. #4 Nick Addison (Rumson) 8-1
182: #1 Nicko Cofone (Midd North) d. #2 Christian Murphy (Howell) 1-0
195: #1 Peter Wersinger (Long Branch) d. #3 Eric Quartey (Freehold Twp) 5-3
220: #2 Steven Giannios (SJV) d. #4 Sal DiSalvo (Donovan Catholic) 4-2 SV
Hwt: #3 Paul Liseno (SJV) by injury default over #1 Kevin Cerruti (Long Branch) 2:03
SCT - 3RD PLACE
106: #2 Vincent Scollo (Jackson Memorial) d. #4 Thomas O'Keefe (Midd North) 3-0
113:#3 Tyler Klinsky (Midd North) d. #1 Ben Sabo (Pt Boro) 7-4
120: #4 Michael Conklin (TR East) by forfeit
126: #4 Joshua Bollard (Liberty) d. #7 Al DeSantis (Shore) 4-2
132: #4 Charles Peterson (SJV) d. #2 Luke Moynihan (Lacey) 8-7
138: #5 Cristiaan Dailey (Donovan Catholic) d. #3 Nick Boggiano (TR North) 2-1
Dailey becomes 1st wrestler from Donovan Catholic to win 100 matches
145: #5 Paul Jakub (Howell) d. #3 Spencer Robinson (Pt Boro) 5-3
152: #3 Scott Dupont (Holmdel) d. #4 Francis Marshall (Pt Boro) 7-3
160: #2 Matt Benedetti (Manalapan) d. #12 Louie Saez (Long Branch) 3-1
170: #1 Shane Reitsma (Howell) d. #6 Ean Mueller (Brick Memorial) 9-6
182: #4 George Burdick (Raritan) tf. #3 Kyle Epperly (Jackson Memorial) 15-0 3:18
195: #7 Josiah Walker (SJV) d. #5 Billy Borowsky (Pt Boro) 6-4
220: #1 Ethan Wolf (Raritan) d. #3 Cameron DiGiorgio (CBA) 5-1
Hwt: #5 Adam Markman (Midd South) d. #7 Jaylen Paige (Asbury Park) 3-2 TB
SHORE CONFERENCE TOURNAMENT SEMIFINAL RESULTS
SEMIFINALS - Hwt
#1 Kevin Cerruti (Long Branch) d. #5 Adam Markman (Midd South) 5-1
#3 Paul Liseno (SJV) p. #7 Jaylen Paige (Asbury Park) 5:21
SEMIFINALS - 220
#4 Sal DiSalvo (Donovan Catholic) p. #1 Ethan Wolf (Raritan) 4:24
#2 Steven Giannios (SJV) d. #3 Cameron DiGiorgio (CBA) 5-3
SEMIFINALS - 195
#1 Peter Wersinger (Long Branch) d. #5 Billy Borowsky (Pt Boro) 4-3
#3 Eric Quartey (Freehold Twp) d. #7 Josiah Walker (SJV) 6-5 UTB
SEMIFINALS - 182
#1 Nicko Cofone (MIdd North) d. #4 George Burdick (Raritan) 8-4
#2 Christian Murphy (Howell) d. #3 Kyle Epperly (Jackson Memorial) 2-1
SEMIFINALS - 170
#4 Nick Addison (Rumson) d. #1 Shane Reitsma (Howell) 6-4
#2 Nick Caracappa (SJV) d. #6 Ean Mueller (Brick Memorial) 7-4
SEMIFINALS - 160
#1 Robert Kanniard (Wall) p. #12 Louie Saez (Long Branch) 0:50
#6 Anthony Aquilano (Raritan) p. #2 Matt Benedetti (Manalapan) 2:47
SEMIFINALS - 152
#1 Cole Corrigan (TR South) d. #4 Francis Marshall (Pt Boro) 9-2
#2 Stanley Wojdylak (Midd North) d. #3 Scott Dupont (Holmdel) 2-0
SEMIFINALS - 145
#1 Jack Kelly (Wall) d. #5 Paul Jakub (Howell) 5-1
#2 Luke Gauthier (Lacey) d. #3 Spencer Robinson (Pt Boro) 8-3)
SEMIFINALS - 138
#1 Jake Benner (Ocean Twp) md. #5 Cristiaan Dailey (Donovan Catholic) 10-2
#2 Dan Esposito (Howell) d. #3 Nick Boggiano (TR North) 7-3
SEMIFINALS - 132
#1 Kyle Slendorn (Howell) p. #4 Charles Peterson (SJV) 4:52
#6 Russell Benson (Raritan) md. #2 Luke Moynihan (Lacey) 17-3
SEMIFINALS - 126
#1 Darby Diedrich (Howell) md. #4 Joshua Bollard (Liberty) 9-1
#3 Dyon Womack (Colts Neck) d. #7 Al DeSantis (Shore) 4-3
SEMIFINALS - 120
#1 Richie Koehler (CBA) p. #4 Michael Conklin (TR East) 3:25
#3 Tyler Pepe (SJV) by medical forfeit
SEMIFINALS - 113
#5 Hunter Gutierrez (Lacey) p. #1 Ben Sabo (Pt Boro) 1:00
#2 Ryan Zimmerman (Long Branch) d. #3 Tyler Klinsky (Midd North) 5-4
SEMIFINALS - 106
#1 Dean Peterson (SJV) md. #4 Thomas O'Keefe (Midd North) 12-1
#3 Vin Santaniello (Brick Memorial) d. #2 Vincent Scollo (Jackson Memorial) 5-0
SHORE CONFERENCE TOURNAMENT QUARTERFINAL RESULTS
QUARTERS - HWT
#1 Kevin Cerruti (Long Branch) p. #9 Matt Spirko (Raritan) 1:05
#5 Adam Markman (Midd South) d. #20 Joe Teresi (Ocean Twp) 12-6
#3 Paul Liseno (SJV) p. #6 Brandon Austin (TR East) 2:59
#7 Jaylen Paige (Asbury Park) d. #2 Anthony Bonavito (Pt Boro) 3-1 SV
QUARTERS - 220 - COMPLETE
#1 Ethan Wolf (Raritan) d. #8 Ricky Voss (Monmouth) 3-0
#4 Sal DiSalvo (Donovan Catholic) p. #5 Edison Quesada (Red Bank) 3:39
#3 Cameron DiGiorgio (CBA) d. #6 Gabriel Fattizzi (Pt Boro) 3-2
#2 Steven Giannios (SJV) tf. #7 Austin Colbert (Freehold Twp) 19-4 5:55
QUARTERS - 195 - COMPLETE
#1 Peter Wersinger (Long Branch) tf. #9 Dante Morris (Lakewood) 17-2 6:00
#5 Billy Borowsky (Pt Boro) d. #4 Sam Williams (Brick Memorial) 4-2
#3 Eric Quartey (Freehold Twp) d. #6 Chavis Coleman (Liberty) 9-4
#7 Josiah Walker (SJV) d. #2 Rashaun Hansford (Howell) 11-6
QUARTERS - 182 - COMPLETE
#1 Nicko Cofone (MIdd North) p. #9 Liam Horan (Rumson) 2:50
#4 George Burdick (Raritan) p. #12 Charlie Cotton (Barnegat) 2:56
#3 Kyle Epperly (Jackson Memorial) p. #6 Jack Hardzewicz (Midd South) 5:06
#2 Christian Murphy (Howell) p. #7 Michael Jannucci (Colts Neck) 4:25
QUARTERS - 170 - COMPLETE
#1 Shane Reitsma (Howell) tf. #9 Kenneth Koenig (Colts Neck) 20-3 4:00
#4 Nick Addison (Rumson) p. #5 Dan Santos-Silva (Long Branch) 3:36
#6 Ean Mueller (Brick Memorial) p. #3 Kyle Hillermeier (Freehold Twp) 0:15
#2 Nick Caracappa (SJV) d. #10 Justin Weimer (Midd South) 8-2
QUARTERS - 160 - COMPLETE
#1 Robert Kanniard (Wall) tf. #9 Jackson Brandt (Lacey) 24-7 5:33
Career win #100 for Kanniard
#12 Louie Saez (Long Branch) d. #4 John McTaggart (Pt Boro) 7-5 SV
#6 Anthony Aquilano (Raritan) d. #14 Anthony Esposito (Ocean Twp) 7-1
#2 Matt Benedetti (Manalapan) p. #10 Jacob Mena (Pinelands) 4:43
QUARTERS - 152 - COMPLETE
#1 Cole Corrigan (TR South) tf. #8 Luke Arnold (Long Branch) 21-4 5:24
#4 Francis Marshall (Pt Boro) d. #12 Brennan Richardson (Pinelands) 5-2
#3 Scott Dupont (Holmdel) md. #11 Jimmy Sherlock (Pt Beach) 11-3
#2 Stanley Wojdylak (Midd North) d. #7 Ryan Bohringer (Jackson Memorial) 4-0
QUARTERS - 145 - COMPLETE
#1 Jack Kelly (Wall) md. #8 Christian Sookdeo (Raritan) 11-3
#5 Paul Jakub (Howell) md. #4 Anthony Coposky (Manalapan) 17-5
#3 Spencer Robinson (Pt Boro) p. #11 Nicholas Tomasiello (Jackson Memorial) 1:24
#2 Luke Gauthier (Lacey) p. #10 Dean Gallo (Holmdel) 2:57
QUARTERS - 138 - COMPLETE
#1 Jake Benner (Ocean Twp) p. #9 Alex Baran (Manalapan) 1:31
#5 Cristiaan Dailey (Donovan Catholic) by forfeit
#3 Nick Boggiano (TR North) d. #6 AJ Erven (Raritan) 9-6
#2 Dan Esposito (Howell) d. #7 Carsten Digiantomasso (Jackson Memorial) 3-1
QUARTERS - 132 - COMPLETE
#1 Kyle Slendorn (Howell) p. #8 Nicholas Gallicchio (TR South) 2:36
Slendorn breaks school record for career wins
#4 Charles Peterson (SJV) d. #12 Jack Oleske (TR North) 9-2
#6 Russell Benson (Raritan) d. #3 Alex Poniros (Ocean Twp) 3-2
#2 Luke Moynihan (Lacey) d. #7 Sam LaCorte (CBA) 13-8
QUARTERS - 126 - COMPLETE
#1 Darby Diedrich (Howell) md. #8 Paul Santomarco (Manalapan) 11-3
#4 Joshua Bollard (Liberty) d. #5 Chris Dean (Long Branch) 6-5
#3 Dyon Womack (Colts Neck) d. #6 Jack Nies (Ocean Twp) 6-2
#7 Al DeSantis (Shore) d. #2 Max Brignola (Rumson) 6-3
QUARTERS - 120 - COMPLETE
#1 Richie Koehler (CBA) p. #9 Rey Guzman (Long Branch) 2:56
#4 Michael Conklin (TR East) md. #5 Adam Manzo (Ocean Twp) 10-1
#3 Tyler Pepe (SJV) d. #6 Freddy Luchs (Midd North) 6-2
#2 Joseph King (Colts Neck) d. #7 Jerry Lleshi (Howell) 3-1
QUARTERS - 113 - COMPLETE
#1 Ben Sabo (Pt Boro) md. #8 Matt Klemser (Shore) 8-0
#5 Hunter Gutierrez (Lacey) p. #4 Sean Foley (Barnegat) 3:47
#3 Tyler Klinsky (Midd North) md. #6 Nico Messina (Freehold Boro) 11-3
#2 Ryan Zimmerman (Long Branch) d. #10 Ethan Liptzin (Howell) 4-0
QUARTERS - 106 - COMPLETE
#1 Dean Peterson (SJV) md. #9 Jesse Liptzin (Howell) 11-1
#4 Thomas O'Keefe (Midd North) d. #5 Ryan Rosenthal (TR North) 7-1
#3 Vin Santaniello (Brick Memorial) d. #6 Jack Maida (Shore) 1-0
#2 Vincent Scollo (Jackson Memorial) tf. #10 Nicholas Rivera (Central) 21-4 5:28
WEIGHT BY WEIGHT PREVIEWS
This section is going to be updated throughout the afternoon and evening, and quite possibly into tomorrow depending how fast I work, so check back.
And please keep in mind, predictions are for fun. No offense intended. I actually like your kid. I'm 50/50 on you, but your kid? Aces!
One of the great thing about the SCT going to the individual format is that provides a chance for many to get their first look at the new young stars in the Shore Conference. As is usual, many of them can be found here in the 106-pound weight class.
Freshman Dean Peterson (21-0) of St John Vianney entered the season with a lot of hype following a very successful career on the youth circuit, and has so far lived up to it. He enters the SCT at a perfect 21-0 with championship wins at the Robin Leff, Mustang Classic, and Sam Cali Tournaments. At the 4-seed is Middletown North's Thomas O'Keefe (20-6), who could have a very tough challenge right out of the gate as he could potentially face Ocean's #13 Demetri Poniros (12-4) in the pre-quarters, who he edged, 4-2, earlier this season. As always, you have to keep an eye on talented seniors in the lightweight brackets, and we certainly have one here in #9 Jesse Liptzin (11-2) of Howell, who just knocked off O'Keefe, 1-0, on Wednesday.
A little more experience in the bottom, led by Jackson Memorial junior Vin Scollo (15-5), who secured the #2 seed, and seniors #7 Jonathan Salvemini (13-2) of Manchester and #10 Nick Rivera (16-3) of Central. Those vets are surrounded by more of the Shore's talented crop of frosh, including #3 Vin Santaniello (24-1) of Brick Memorial, whose lone loss is to Peterson, 4-2 at the Mustang, #6 Jack Maida (21-1) of Shore Regional, whose sole loss is to Santaniello, #11 Eddie Totten (16-7) of TR East, and undefeated #15 Logan Waller (10-0) of Colts Neck.
Final 4: #1 Peterson, #4 O'Keefe, #3 Santaniello, #2 Scollo
Finals: #1 Peterson over #3 Santaniello
Darkhorse: #9 Liptzin
This is a bracket that has caused a lot of online chatter with the seeding. Bottom line, it's a loaded bracket, with five returning State qualifiers, including a 5th-place finisher in Hunter Gutierrez of Lacey who is at the 5-seed.
Pt Boro's Ben Sabo (24-1) racked up "quality win" points to jump the field here for the top seed. It's not like he received a free pass, as he gets the winner of an interesting prelim match between #16 Robert Taddeo (14-10) of Raritan and #17 Will Tisony (12-8) of Ocean, who just dropped a close 4-1 decision to Sabo on Wednesday night. As mentioned, Gutierrez is the 5-seed here, and could be on a collision course with another State qualifier, #4 Sean Foley (22-1) of Barnegat, in what would be one of the highlight quarterfinal bouts.
With returning State qualifiers #2 Ryan Zimmerman (23-2) of Long Branch, #3 Tyler Klinsky (23-3) of Middletown North, and #6 Nico Messina (18-0) of Freehold Boro leading the charge, this is one of the more stacked half-brackets in the tournament. Add in guys like Donovan Catholic's #7 Cael Rankin (20-4), Howell's #10 Ethan Liptzin (19-1), and nice crop of frosh in #11 Nicholas Moldaver (11-10) of Colts Neck, #19 Kamrin O'Neill (13-4) of Matawan, and #22 Joseph Butler (11-1) of SJV, and this one should be a lot of fun.
Final 4: #1 Sabo, #5 Gutierrez, #6 Messina, #2 Zimmerman
Finals: #5 Gutierrez over #6 Messina
Darkhorse: #10 Liptzin
The top seeds here were a given, with both #1 Richie Koehler (13-1) of CBA and #2 Joey King (19-2) of Colts Neck finishing one win shy of a State medal in 2017. In all, there are four State qualifiers here with #3 Tyler Pepe (19-3) of St John Vianney and #6 Freddy Luchs (18-9) of Middletown North also in the fold.
As mentioned, Koehler is the top seed here. Down at the 4-seed is another one of the Shore's talented freshman in TR East's Michael Conklin (21-3), who already has wins this year over #5 Adam Manzo (15-5) of Ocean Township and Luchs. We also have potential here for a real good 8/9 bout in #8 AJ Sortino (20-3) of Manalapan and #9 Nick Reilly (18-4) of TR North.
Another one of the more loaded half brackets in the tourney, with three of the State qualifers in this weight in King, Pepe, and Luchs, all here. Also in this half of the bracket is #7 Jerry Lleshi (15-3) of Howell, who earned a decision over Luchs on Wednesday. We'll have two more promising frosh matching up in the prelims in #11 Jack Bailey (17-8) of Pt Boro and #22 Jesse Beresky (11-5) of Keansburg.
Final 4: #1 Koehler, #4 Conklin, #3 Pepe, #2 King
Finals: #1 Koehler over #2 King
Darkhorse: #7 Lleshi
BRACKET WAS RE-SEEDED DUE TO WITHDRAWL.
BRACKET WAS RE-SEEDED DUE TO WITHDRAWL.
BRACKET WAS RE-SEEDED DUE TO WITHDRAWL.
Final 4: #1 Diedrich, #4 Bollard, #3 Womack, #2 Brignola
Finals: #1 Diedrich over #2 Brignola
Darkhorse: #7 DeSantis
A weight class with four State qualifiers, including a State runner-up, and the weight that has the potential to provide arguably the most anticiapted quarterfinal bouts of the tournament highlight the 132-pound weight class.
Howell's Kyle Slendorn (21-0) finished 2nd place in Atlantic City a year ago. There's a nice field behind him in the top bracket with #4 Charlie Peterson (17-5) of SJV, #5 Kareem Ghaida (15-4) of Manalapan, and #8 Nick Gallicchio (11-5) among the group, but it's going to awfully tough to keep Slendorn from the finals.
Here is where things should get fun. Lacey's Luke Moynihan (18-3), a State qualifier for the Lions last season is at the #2 seed. The chatter here though is who is at #3 and #6 and seem, barring an upset, to be lined up for a big quarterfinal match. Ocean's #3 Alex Poniros (11-4) made it to AC as a frosh in 2017, while Russell Benson (20-1) of Raritan was a win away from reaching the Boardwalk Hall podium a year ago. If the two take care of business in the pre-quarters, they'll meet up on Saturday morning in the quarters.
Final 4: #1 Slendorn, #4 Peterson, #6 Benson, #2 Moynihan
Finals: #1 Slendorn over #6 Benson
Darkhorse: I don't know, man... #7 Sam LaCorte (17-5) of CBA?
Five State qualifiers, including a State Champion, and a very strong field behind them, make this one of the more talent-heavy weights in the tournament.
The top seed is Ocean Townships returning State Champ, Jake Benner (19-1). While he's obviously a heavy favorite to get to the finals, it won't be because of weak half-bracket. #5 Cristiaan Dailey (22-0) and #9 Alex Baran (13-2) both punched tickets to AC in 2017. #4 Riley Cheong (19-1) has quietly had a solid season for TR South, picking up several strong wins. The 8th-seeded Ty Bailey (19-6) of Pt Boro has also picked up some big wins this year, including a decision last week over State qualifier Luke Moynihan of Lacey.
Two more State qualifiers are in the bottom half of the bracket in #2 Dan Esposito (20-1) of Howell, and #3 Nick Boggiano (18-3) of TR North. A potential quarters matchup of Boggiano and Raritan's #6 AJ Erven (19-3) could be a good one, but I think both will get a decent test in their first matches before we get there. At #7, Carsten Digiantomasso (16-9) of Jackson Memorial is extremely battle-tested, and it seems like he's wrestled just about everybody in this field.
Final 4: #1 Benner, #5 Dailey, #3 Boggiano, #2 Esposito
FInals: #1 Benner over #2 Esposito
Darkhorse: #14 Michael Ponenti (20-1) Rumson & #10 Caleb Alvarado (17-4) of Brick Memorial
A couple of weeks ago, it looked like this bracket could be a bucket of blood, with as many as 8 previous State qualifiers in it. Things have thinned a little with a few guys down and a couple of guys up, but it's still a solid bracket.
#1 Jack Kelly (23-1) of Wall suffered his only loss this season to State Champ, Jake Benner of Ocean. He was two wins away from the Boardwalk Hall podium a year ago. There's always fun when Raritan and Long Branch get together, and we'll get one of those in the pre-quarters with #8 Christian Sookdeo (18-5) and #9 Isaac Shohet (14-10) in a rematch of a bout previosuly won by Sookdeo, 5-2. A lot of eyes will be on Howell's talented freshman #5 Paul Jakub (19-1) to see how he stacks up the Shore's best.
State qualifiers Luke Gauthier of Lacey and Spencer Robinson (18-5) of Pt Boro hold the #2 and #3 seeds, respectively. The next 5-seeded wrestlers in this half of the bracket are all previous Region qualifiers, including #10 Dean Gallo (21-1) of Holmdel, who was a District 20 Champ last year.
Final 4: #1 Kelly, #5 Jakub, #2 Gauthier, #3 Robinson
Finals: #2 Gauthier over #5 Jakub
Darkhorse: #10 Gallo
Strength-Level = 10 with this weight, as the Top 5 seeds here have all made the trip to Atlantic City.
Top-seeded Cole Corrigan (20-0) of TR South has made the trip to Boardwalk Hall three times during his career, finishing 7th in 2016. He is off to a monster start to the year, with all but one of his wins coming with bonus. Two of the losses for 4th-seeded Francis Marshall (22-3), who punched a ticket to AC last year while at Manasquan, have come at the hands of Corrigan. #5 Xavier Kelly (17-3) of Howell is another AC qualifier in the weight, advancing in his first year in the varsity lineup. There's even more talent behind these three, with #8 Luke Arnold (16-1) of Long Branch, #12 Brennan Richardson (12-5) of Pinelands, and #13 Christian Recantini (12-11) all returning Region qualifiers. Also in the mix at #9 is SJV frosh Blake Clayton (13-7).
Middletown North's Stanley Wojdylak (23-3) and Holmdel's Scott Dupont (20-1), also returning State qualifiers, occupy the #2 and #3 seeds. They headline a solid bottom bracket that also includes talented Wall freshman #6 Jacob Whitworth (21-3), #7 Ryan Bohringer (17-8) of Jackson Memorial, #10 Sam Goldzweig (20-3) of Red Bank, and #11 Jimmy Sherlock (19-4) of Pt Beach.
Final 4: #1 Corrigan, #4 Marshall, #2 Wojdylak, #6 Whitworth
Finals: #1 Corrigan over #2 Wojdylak
Darkhorse: #7 Bohringer
For those that use confidence points with their picks, this could be one of the candidate weights for a 14.
#1 Robert Kanniard (24-0) of Wall, a 4th-place finisher in the State last year, has won titles at the Colt Classic, Mustang Classic, and Elizabeth Minuteman Invitational tournaments. Like Corrigan, all but one of his wins has come with bonus. He's the lone wrestler to make it to the boardwalk in this entire bracket, and is a strong favorite.
One of the more wide open half brackets in the tourney. #2 Matt Benedetti (17-4) of Manalapan has quietly had a strong season for the Braves. The potential 3/6 matchup of #3 Johnny O'Beirne (19-4) of Holmdel and #6 Anthony Aquilano (18-5) of Raritan would be a rematch of a previous bout won by O'Beirne, 6-4.
Final 4: #1 Kanniard, #5 Richard, #6 Aquilano, #2 Benedetti
Finals: #1 Kanniard over #6 Aquilano
Darkhorse: #10 Jacob Mena (14-4) of Pinelands
#1 Shane Reitsma (21-1) of Howell and #2 Nick Caracappa (17-3) have been fixtures near the top of the State rankings all season long. A potential final would be one of the most anticipated bouts of the tournament, BUT... each has a major hurdle in their way before that potential matchup can happen.
The main opposition to Reitsma getting to the final would appear to be Rumson's #4 Nick Addison (23-0). The junior often gets overlooked in the discussion of the Shore's best upperweights, but he has a load of talent and is most likely chomping at the bit to prove himself on this weekend's big stage. Can't sleep on #5 Dan Santos-Silva (20-5) of Long Branch here either, who tends to always keep things close and within striking distance.
There's some good depth in the lower bracket to go along with Caracappa. #3 Kyle Hillermeier (19-3) of Freehold Twp is another wrestler who sometimes gets overlooked for some reason. He was in AC last season, and can not, and should not, be taken lightly here. There are some good sleepers here too in #6 Ean Mueller (17-5) of Brick Memorial, #7 Juan Nakano (16-4) of TR North, #10 Justin Weimer (19-2) of Middletown South, and #11 Brock Winston (16-9) of Jackson Memorial.
Final 4: #1 Reitsma, #4 Addison, #3 Hillermeier, #2 Caracappa
Finals: #1 Reitsma over #2 Caracappa
Darkhorse: #7 Nakano
Potential for a very fun weight here. Some State qualifiers, some solid mat wrestlers, and a bonafide home run hitter.
Top-seeded Nicko Cofone (24-2) of Middletown North was a win away from a medal in AC last year. His only losses have been narrow decisions to returning State qualifiers. At the #4 seed is Raritan's George Burdick (20-2), a guy who never met a pin he didn't like. He's a legit threat for the big move anytime he's on the mat.
#2 Christian Murphy (21-1) of Howell is a returning State qualifier, whose only loss this year came early on at the Disney Duals. You see, Disney World isn't always the most friendly place in the world. Among Murphy's wins this year against competition in this half of the bracket include a pin over #3 Kyle Epperly (20-6) of Jackson Memorial,a major over #7 Michael Jannucci (15-4) of Colts Neck, and a tech over potential Pre-Quarter opponent #18 Anthony Jomo (13-6) of Manalapan.
Final 4: #1 Cofone, #4 Burdick, #3 Epperly, #2 Murphy
Finals: #1 Cofone over #2 Murphy
Darkhorse: #6 Jack Hardzewicz (19-4) of Middletown South
You have to predict wide open weights somewhere, so I'll go with this one here because, well, why not?
#1 Pete Wersinger (19-3) of Long Branch is one of three returning State qualifiers in this weight class. If he gets by his opener, as expected, he gets the 8/9 winner of #8 Juan Abraham (16-5) of Barnegat and #9 Dante Morris (18-5) of Lakewood, which is a rematch of a previous bout won by Abraham, 12-7. At the 4/5 seeds are #4 Sam Williams (20-2) of Brick Memorial and #5 Billy Borowsky (23-1) of Pt Boro. Borowsky actually holds a head to head win over Williams this season, but it was thrown out due to a triangle involving #3 Eric Quartey (16-2) of Freehold Twp who edged Borowsky in the ultimate tiebreaker round at the Walter Woods.
Quartey, a State qualifier in 2017, is at the #3 seed due to a DQ loss to #2 Rashaun Hansford (5-5) of Howell, which allowed Hansford to jump a good portion of the field. Another State qualifier lurks at the #7 seed in Josiah Walker (8-4) of SJV. At #6, Chavis Coleman (19-6) has picked up some nice wins wrestling at 182-220, and could be a sleeper here.
Final 4: #1 Wersinger, #5 Borowsky, #3 Quartey, #7 Walker
Finals: #5 Borowsky over #7 Walker
Darkhorse: #11 Anthony Clavijo (13-6) of TR North
If you were to ask me (which you didn't) which weight had the toughest Top 4 seeds to crack, this would be my pick here. With three State qualifiers, and a top-seed who has knocked off three wrestlers that were in AC last season, this is a very top heavy group.
#1 Ethan Wolf (22-1) of Raritan has been big for the Rockets, spending time at 220 and Hwt, depending where he's needed, for the Rockets. His lone loss came up at heavyweight to SJV's Paul Liseno. His three wins over returning State qualifiers this season includes one over #4 Sal DiSalvo (22-2) of Donovan Catholic last week. DiSalvo actually holds a head to head over #3 Cameron DiGiorgio (18-2) of CBA from the Colt Classic Finals. Umm, I think there's a seeding mistake here. So I'll just cut to my Predictions before I end up having to redo another write up. NOTE TO SELF: Wait until Friday to do previews next year.
Final 4: #1 Wolf, #4 DiSalvo, #3 DiGiorgio, #2 Giannios
Final: #2 Giannios over #1 Wolf
Darkhorse: #8 Ricky Voss (19-2) of Monmouth
Ahh, the big dogs. Solid crop here, with the top two seeds having advanced to Atlantic City last season, and a proven, strong, group behind them. A lot can happen with the heavies, and usually does.
#1 Kevin Cerruti (21-2) of Long Branch was a great story last season. He made the Regions as an injury replacement, and then got on a roll all the way to punching a ticket to Boardwalk Hall. He has wins over four of the top 8 seeds here by a combined 5 points. At the 4 & 5 spots are #4 Austin Dewise (16-6) of Middletown North of #5 Adam Markmann (19-3) of Middletown South. These two met last week, with Dewise winning, 3-1.
#2 Anthony Bonavito (20-0) of Pt Boro enters the SCT with a nice big goose egg in his loss column. At #3 is SJV's Paul Liseno (16-3) who has been a big pinner for the Lancers. They're part of a solid bottom bracket that also includes #6 Brandon Austin (19-3) of TR East and #7 Jaylen Paige (19-1) of Asbury Park.
Final 4: #1 Cerruti, #4 Dewise, #3 Liseno, #2 Bonavito
Finals: #3 Liseno over #1 Cerruti
Darkhorse: #15 Scott Prendergast (14-2) of Howell