2009 CIAC Class S championships                         Complete brackets
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Norwich Bulletin, Feb. 22: Killingly holds off Somers to defend Class S title

Waterbury Republican American, Feb. 22: Seven BL wrestlers bring home Class S titles

2009 Class S championships
At Uncasville
Team results – 1. Killingly 186, 2. Somers 174, 3. Gilbert 167, 4. Derby 153, 5. Nonnewaug 147, 6. Thomaston 146, 7. St. Bernard 141, 8. Housatonic 122, 9. Griswold 115½, 10. Canton 107½, 11. Immaculate 92, 12. Haddam-Killingworth 88, 13. Terryville 83½, 14. East Catholic 71, 15. Holy Cross 70, 16. Old Saybrook/Westbrook 69, 17. Stafford 42, 18. Portland and Northwestern 34, 20. Hartford Classical 33½, 21. St. Paul 29, 22. Suffield 28, 23. Morgan 25, 24. O’Brien Tech 24, 25. Lyman Memorial 23, 26. Ansonia 22, 27. East Windsor 20, 28. Oxford 18, 29. Rocky Hill 16, 30. Windham Tech and Weston 13, 32. Ellington 10½, 33. University, Old Lyme and East Granby 0
Individual results
Championship: Alan Sanford, Thomaston pin Matt Poppa, Derby, 1:58; Third place:  Ron Allen, Griswold dec. Matt White, Canton, 5-4; Fifth place: Josh Hoxie, Gilbert, pin Austin Jordano, Immaculate, 3:20
Championship: Tyler Foley, Thomaston pin Anthony Delprete, Derby, 5:31; Third place:  Austin Hodges, Nonnewaug pin Thomas Lombardi, Killingly, 2:08; Fifth place: Andrew Suh, St. Bernard dec. Will Kelsey, Northwestern, 12-0
Championship: Tyler Tilbe, Nonnewaug dec. Daniel Piscottano, Somers, 8-6; Third place:  Scott Gonzalez., East Catholic pin Allen Yang, Stafford, 4:25; Fifth place: Vin Delprete, Derby dec. Steve Carpenter, Canton, 2-0
Championship: Brandon Thuotte, Killingly tech fall Richard Wood, St. Bernard, 16-1, 4:39; Third place:  Dom Ghi, Housatonic dec. Jake Alderman, Lyman Memorial, 9-7 OT; Fifth place: Tyler O’Connor, Derby dec. Dennis Christie, Immaculate, 5-3
Championship: Gavin Buckley, Immaculate pin Tony Decato, Gilbert, 3:11; Third place:  Tylor Herrick, Killingly win by default over Mark Gonzalez, East Catholic; Fifth place: Joseph Falco, Griswold dec. Joe Titus, 10-1
Championship: Michael Daly, St. Bernard dec. Troy Zachary, Somers, 3-1; Third place:  Brandon Walsh, Griswold dec. Eddie Loomis, Killingly, 3-2; Fifth place: Linbert Cousley, Derby dec. Dalton Ahern, Old Saybrook, 12-7
Championship: Zachary Cooke, Killingly dec. Eric Parsons, Gilbert, 4-2; Third place:  Brandon Leach, Canton dec. Frank Navarro, Old Saybrook, 4-2; Fifth place: David Chokas, Somers, pin Matt Janiga, Ellington, 0:31
Championship: Fran Gelada, Thomaston dec. Steve Wingard, Housatonic, 8-7; Third place:  Justin Grabarz, Derby dec. Matt Caulfield, Holy Cross, 3-1; Fifth place: Wayne Falco, Griswold dec. David Skau, Old Saybrook, 14-8
Championship: Robert Garlick, Somers dec. Nick O’Connor, Ansonia, 2-0, OT; Third place:  Nicl Roccapriore, Terryville dec. Trevor Manuel, Old Saybrook, 12-4; Fifth place: Eric Sakowski, East Catholic pin Guy Hall, Haddam-Killingworth, 2:25
Championship: Samuel Schwartz, Housatonic dec. Mike Zabala, Hartford Classical, 7-4; Third place:  Chris Bachand, St. Paul dec. Rich Jones, Canton, 6-5; Fifth place: Colin Beloin, Killingly dec. William Boots, Griswold, 7-3
Championship: Tim Vollaro, Somers dec. Brad Visconti, Housatonic, 14-5; Third place:  Tore Lovetre, Gilbert pin Nate Haller, Canton, 0:41; Fifth place: John Draper, Terryville dec. Mark Dilley, Thomaston, 12-0
Championship: Lucas Bowman, St. Bernard pin Ross Lopardo, Gilbert, 1:03; Third place:  George Planeta, Portland dec. Ben Schwartz, Housatonic, 12-4; Fifth place: Christian Nelson, Thomaston pin William Baklik, Haddam Killingowrth, 4:21
Championship: Kyle Bucciarelli, Nonnewaug dec. Andrew Whitehead, Killingly, 10-6; Third place:  Ken Vollaro, Somers pin Thomas McEvoy, O’Brien Tech, 2:57, Fifth place: Andrew Morrone, Holy Cross pin Jesse Gilbert, Derby, 2:29
Championship: Marshall Deane, Gilbert dec. Nicholas Nikolov, Somers, 11-6; Third place:  Ronnie Walter, Nonnewaug pin Michael Tucker, St. Bernard, 2:07; Fifth place: Andrew Brooks, Morgan pin Stephen Polumbo, Haddam-Killingworth, 1:52
Outstanding wrestler: Brandon Thuotte, Killingly (125); Fast Fall: Andrew Morrone, Holy Cross (215) 4 pins in 5:35

Connecticut Wrestling Online
UNCASVILLE, Conn., Feb. 21 – There is just
so much you can do and Somers coach Scott Zachary wasn’t going to dwell on the what if.
His Spartans had just nine wrestlers in Saturday’s Class S championship meet.

Normally, there are 10 on his entire team but one athlete was sick. So, Somers didn’t enter a wrestler in five weight classes.

And still, they came close to winning their first state championship. But it was the depth of Killingly that enabled the Redmen to hold off Somers and win the Class S title for the second straight year.

“It was a total team effort,” Killingly coach Rich Bowen told the Norwich Bulletin. “We had one kid who hadn’t won a match all year and won for us today. Everyone contributed.”

Killingly beat Somers by 12 points, 186 to 174. But the lead was as low as nine in the finals where Somers had five finalists and Killingly had three.

The difference was the wrestlers that didn’t take home medals for finishing in the top six of their respective weight class. Somers and Killingly each had seven medalists and are sending six wrestlers to the State Open.

But the two Somers wrestlers that didn’t place went a combined 1-2 while the seven Killingly wrestlers didn’t failed to medal went a combined 14-14. “We’re a small group and a good group of hard-working guys,” Zachary said. “It is a unique opportunity for us. They’re warriors. They fight every time they hit the mat.”

Somers’ Tim Vollaro (171) won his third straight Class S title while Robert Garlick (152) won a championship with an overtime takedown. Daniel Piscottano (119) lost by two to Nonnewaug’s Tyler Tilbe, Troy Zachary (135) dropped a 3-1 decision to St. Bernard’s Michael Daly and Nicholas Nikolov (285) was beaten by Gilbert’s Marshall Deane, 11-6.

“Every one, I said this is your match,” Zachary said. “You win and the team points will take care of themselves.”

A young Killingly squad (10 juniors, five sophomores) had two wrestlers win state titles including Brandon Thuotte (125), who was named the tournament’s outstanding wrestler after a 16-1 tech fall win over Rich Wood of St. Bernard in the final. It was his second straight Class S title.

Zachary Cooke (140) outlasted Gilbert’s Eric Parsons, 4-2 to win a title. Two days earlier, he was at home with the flu. Cooke had a 2-0 lead after one period and when Parsons couldn’t turn him in the third period, he let Cooke escape to try and get a takedown. Parsons cut the lead to one with a takedown with 14 seconds remaining. He let Cooke go again but couldn’t finish.

BERKSHIRE POWER: Berkshire League teams had 12 finalists and brought home seven individual champions. Thomaston, which had just one state champion, crowned three champions on Saturday.

There was just about minute left and Thomaston senior Tyler Foley (112) could see his state championship dreams slipping away. Foley trailed top-seeded Anthony Delprete of Derby by four points in the 112-pound final.

Delprete had dominated the match with four takedowns but Foley got his chance. He was able to quickly slide his hands under Delprete’s arms and threw him to his back with about 40 seconds left in the match. He squeezed hard and pinned Delprete with 29 seconds left in the match to win a state championship.

“I had to try something,” Foley said. “The throw was there and I went for it. He was quick and he had me for the entire match.”

It wasn’t over, either. “He almost rolled me over,” Foley said. “I was squeezing for my life.”

Sophomore teammate Alan Sanford (103) pinned Derby’s Matt Poppa in 1:58 to win his state title. At 145, Thomaston's Francis Gelada beat Housatonic freshman Stephen Wingard for the fourth time this season, 8-7.

Gelada had an 8-2 lead before Wingard threw Gelada to his back with 40 seconds to left for a two-point takedown and three-point near fall to cut the lead to one point. But Wingard couldn’t turn Gelada in the final 30 seconds to earn another point. “I usually end up throwing him but that kid is full of surprises,” Gelada said.

CLIMBING THE MOUNTAIN: Housatonic put three wrestlers in the finals and crowned its first state champion since 1995 when Samuel Schwartz (160) took advantage of a pair of mistakes from Hartford Classical’s Mike Zabala in the final 45 seconds to win 7-4. Wingard (145) and Brad Visconti (171) finished second.

Schwartz had a one-point lead when Zabela relaxed for an instant near the edge of the circle and he converted with a two-point takedown. After Zabela escaped, Schwartz was penalized for stalling with 18 seconds left to cut the lead to one, 5-4.

But Zabela was desperate and dove for a takedown and when it didn’t work, his head dropped and Schwartz zipped behind for a two-point takedown with two seconds left and a 7-2 win. “I was exhausted,” Schwartz said. “He is real strong. But he gave up on himself at the end.”

DEANE RALLY: Gilbert’s Marshall Deane (285) rallied to win his first state championship while teammates Tony Deprete (135), Eric Parsons (140) and Ross Lopardo (189) finished second. Deane trailed Somers’ Nicholas Nikolov by two points after two periods. But he was able to get a takedown and finally got Nikolov down the match to seize control of the bout and earn an 11-6 victory. Deane won Gilbert’s first state title since 2002.

IMPROVEMENT: Nonnewaug had a pair of champions with Tyler Tilbe (119) and Kyle Bucciarelli (215) bringing home titles. Tilbe built a 7-1 lead after two periods and survived a late surge from Derby’s Vincent Delprete to earn an 8-6 victory. At 215 pounds, senior Kyle Bucciarelli outlasted fourth seed Andrew Whitehead of Killingly, 10-6. Whitehead had pinned Bucciarelli in January at the Eagle Classic.

“All year, we worked to be better at this time of year and we did that today,” Nonnewaug coach David Green said. “When you have the opportunity to score, you score and if you give up points, give up as few as possible. We didn’t give up big points.” Tilbe and Bucciarelli are Nonnewaug’s first state champions since 2004.

QUICK STUDY: Ansonia’s Nick O’Connor hasn’t been wrestling long. But he is a quick study.
The Chargers don’t have an actual wrestling team but interested athletes can work out with nearby Seymour High and compete as individuals. O’Connor came out in January a year ago.

“I don’t think he won a match,” Seymour coach Joe Perrucci said. He has made up for it this year. The junior went 28-4 in the regular season at 152 pounds and Saturday at the Class S wrestling championships, he earned a spot in the finals.

And he came very close to bringing home a championship. O’Connor gave up a takedown to Somers’ undefeated Robert Garlick in overtime in a 2-0 loss. The two wrestlers had battled through six minutes of regulation without scoring a point. In OT, Garlick (29-0) drove into O’Connor immediately after the opening whistle to get the takedown.

O’Connor came away with the key point in his 1-0 semifinal victory over East Catholic’s Eric Sakowski. He escaped with about 30 seconds left in the second period and was able to control Sakowski in the third period to earn a spot in the final.

“There has been a lot of growth,” Perrucci said. “He was struggling a bit at the beginning of the year but he was still winning and pinning kids. At the end of the year, he was pinning everyone.”

O’Connor has already spent two years on the Ansonia football team. As a sophomore, he was primarily a wide receiver. His duties expanded this year to include some playing time at receiver, running back and linebacker. Next year, he may get some playing time at quarterback.

After a 45-minute workout for football each day, he heads to Seymour for wrestling practice.
“He is very bright,” Perrucci said. “You show him something and he absorbs it. The next day, he is using it and using it perfectly. He is a very good athlete.”

BACK IN TOP 10: It’s been a while since the Canton High wrestling team was among the top 10 teams in the Class S tournament. In an 11-year stretch from 1992 to 2002, the Warriors finished in the top 10 nine times. With four medalists, Canton finished 10th.

“I’m very pleased of what we did this year,” Phelps said. Canton went 20-11 overall and 6-1 in the league, finishing in second place behind Avon. A week ago, Canton put four wrestlers in the finals of the NCCC Tournament and crowned a pair of league champions.

Brandon Leach finished third at 140 pounds while freshman Matt White (103), junior Rich Jones (160) and Haller (171) each finished fourth.

Leach (38-11) is ending his scholastic career on a high note, qualifying for the State Open for the first time. He prevailed in several close matches.

Leach earned a close 4-3 victory over Terryville’s Nick Roy in his first bout before getting pinned by Somers’ David Chokas in the quarterfinals. In the consolation round, Leach won four straight matches to finish third, including a 4-2 decision over Old Saybrook’s Frank Navarro. Three of Leach’s four consolation bracket wins were by just two points.

Killingly's depth is too much for Somers
n Thomaston sophomore Alan Sanford pins Derby's Matt Poppa in 1:58 to win his first Class S state championship.
Class S final (103)
2009 Class S tournament videos
n Trailing by four points in the third period, Thomaston's Tyler Foley pins Derby's Anthony Delprete in 5:31 to win the Class S championship at 112 pounds.
Class S final (112)
n St. Bernard's Lucas Bowman pins Gilbert's Ross Lopardo in 1:03 to win the Class S title at 189 pounds.
Class S final (189)
n For the third time this season, Thomaston's Francis Gelada (145) beats Housatonic freshman Steve Wingard. Gelada wins 8-7 to win Class S title.
Class S final (145)
n Gavin Buckley of Immaculate-Danbury pins Tony Decato of Gilbert-Winsted in 3:11 to win the Class S title at 130 pounds.
Class S final (130)