Friday, December 7, 2012

Wrestling: Hunterdon-Warren preview capsules

Belvidere County Seaters

Coach: Dan McIntyre (14-10, second season).

2011-12 record: 14-10, 4-1 Skyland Conference Valley Division (second).

Returning starters (11): So. Matt Hambacher 120-126; Jr. Kenny Morgan 120-126; Sr. Aaron Castner (13-19, D4-2011) 132; Jr. Tyler Dombrosky (10-8) 138; Sr. Jesse Thorsen (22-7, D2-2011) 145; So. Kenny Kane (10-17) 152; So. Ryan Stephen 160; Sr. Tyler Toth 170; Sr. Evan Bray (34-5, D1, R1) 182; Sr. J.B. Lawson (35-8, D2, R3) 220; Sr. Ryan Appleby (31-8, D3) 285.

Key losses: Dylan Thorsen (37-4, D1, R2); Nathan Dow (33-6, D2, R4).

Key returnees: Sr. Zafer Deyer 126; So. Logan Ciraky 132; So. Rene Sousa 152.

Promising newcomers: So. James Smith 106; So. Ture Leahey 113; So. Javan Viola 113; Fr. Robert Panetta 126; Fr. Dylan Tice 132; Fr. Josh Pershpalaj 138; Sr. Keith Mason 138; Fr. Kevon Hartley 138; So. Brett Hoffmaster 145; Sr. Chris Caballero 145; Jr. Ben Pershpalaj 152; Sr. Dylan Zelus 152; Sr. Dave Brewer 152; So. David Harris 160; Sr. Reid McClanahan 170; Sr. Mike Farrell 195; So. Aidan Nelson 195.

Outlook: County Seaters lost their top two wrestlers and two of the best to ever wear a Belvidere singlet -- Dylan Thorsen and Dow -- but return plenty of varsity experience, including Region 1 champion Bray and district medal winners Lawson and Appleby. They make a formidable trio up top. The return of Jesse Thorsen, who has missed most of two seasons in his career with injuries, also is a bonus. The success of this team hinges on the contributions down below from the lighter weights. Expect this group to contend for a return trip to the North 2, Group 1 final.

Delaware Valley Terriers

Coach: Andy Fitz (88-28, sixth season).

2011-12 record: 14-4, 4-1 Skyland Conference Raritan Division champion (T-first).

Returning starters (9): Jr. Michael Adam (9-18) 120; Sr. Chris Marra (9-18) 120-126; Sr. Mike Pongracz (38-4, D2, R3, S5) 126; Sr. Matt Gilmore (23-10, D1, R4) 132; Sr. Alex Niemann (10-12, D4) 152, Jr. Kody Eichlin (20-8) 170; Jr. Luke Zehnbauer (20-10, D3) 170-182; Jr. Andrew Bloom 195-220; Jr. Brian Baehr (11-16) 220-285.

Key losses: Derek Zehnbauer (34-4, D1, R3); Will Van Doren (31-6, D1, R1, S8); Forrest Wooden (26-5, D1, R2).

Key returnees: So. Ryan Erwin 120-126; Jr. Austin McLaughlin (1-7) 138; Jr. Holden Baker (5-5) 145; Jr. Codey Leh 145; So. Cory Lightner 145-152; Jr. Nour Mays 160; Sr. Ryan Metz 182-195; Jr. Marek Tomanek 285.

Promising newcomers: Fr. Jake Moore 106; Fr. Vito Intili 106-113; Fr. Kyle Refalvy 106-113.

Outlook: Terriers always seem to be in the mix in Central Jersey, Group 2 and this year should be no exception. Pongracz, a two-time state medalist who is closing on the school and Hunterdon-Warren record for wins at 113-14, needs 30 to pass Dan Kelly (142) atop the list. He is coming off a big summer and will be in the hunt for a title in AC. Gilmore, Eichlin and Zehnbauer are solid wrestlers. The loss of Tomanek, who broke his wrist playing football and is expected to miss eight weeks, hurts from the onset. Fitz likens him to state qualifier Forrest Wooden. The lighter weights need to hold their own for this team to have a chance at winning the program's first sectional title since 2006.

Hackettstown Tigers

Coach: Frank Rodgers (167-149-4, 10th season of second stint, 17th overall).

2011-12 record: 5-15, 3-2 NJAC Freedom Division (third).

Returning starters (9): Jr. Tony Figueroy (11-16) 113-120; Jr. Matt Nicotra (4-13) 126; Jr. Khilian Bernard 126; Jr. Igor Bykov 132; Sr. Brandon Rothman (16-10) 138; Sr. Tyler Kozimor (27-13, D2, R1) 145-152; Sr. Eddie Dulio 152-160; Sr. Bruce Gurnowski 195; So. Theodore Gurnowski 220.

Key losses: Ismail Saleh (21-7).

Key returnees: Sr. Chris Steffan 132; Jr. Rafael Garcia 160.

Promising newcomers: Fr. Joe Renne 120; Fr. Anthony Carida 132; So. Ian Ballantyne 160-170; Sr. Chris Lynch 182; Sr. Miguel Garcia 220.

Outlook: Tigers are coming off a sub-par campaign after a tremendous run of talent came and went the previous few seasons. Consider the rebuilding phase still in the process as only Kozimor and Rothman are proven winners. Kozimor got on a roll late last season and won a loaded weight in Region 1. Baby steps for this group as a team as it hopes to take advantage of an off-year in the Freedom Division. Improving on last season's win total is a realistic goal.

Hunterdon Central Red Devils

Coach: Steve Gibble (311-111, 22nd season).

2011-12 record: 15-7, 3-3 Skyland Conference Delaware Division (fourth).

Returning starters (10): So. Kyler Rodriguez (12-17, D4) 106; Jr. Dylan Nace (31-5, D2) 126; Jr. Gary Dinmore (28-8, D1, R1, S2) 138; Sr. Tim Higginson (1-3) 145; Jr. Collin Boylan (16-13, D3) 145; So. Joe Scerbo (12-7) 152; Sr. Dylan Cote (11-16, D4) 152; Sr. Tyler Cote (23-10, D2) 160; Sr. David Fenton (25-12, D2) 170; So. Nestor Crespo (11-16) 182.

Key losses: Ryan Larkin (23-9, D2, R4); Tom Scerbo (22-13, D3); Hunter Greer (13-15, D3); Jason Auricchio (18-15, D3).

Key returnees: Jr. Matt Zampetti 113; So. Nick Taylor 120; Jr. Matt Suydam 120; Sr. Paul Rallis 182; Jr. Dan Hausman 195; Sr. Gabe Barba 220; Sr. Matt Whale 285.

Promising newcomers: Sr. John Mondoro 132; Sr. Colton Hoff 132; So. Leo Acquino 195; Sr. Austin Sheaf 195.

Outlook: Red Devils return 10 starters and look solid throughout the middle of the lineup. Problem is, that's where there's a logjam with four wrestlers in the 145-152 range. Ideally, with Dinmore down at 132, they would all fit in. Remains to be seen if that's the case. Rodriguez is back at 106 and is reportedly coming off a good summer. If Central can limit points in the lower weights and a few upper classes, this team will be very tough to deal with in dual meets. Going to be some real battles in county with North Hunterdon, Voorhees and Delaware Valley.

North Hunterdon Lions

Coach: Tim Flynn (43-21, fourth season).

2011-12 record: 17-5, 4-2 Skyland Conference Delaware Division (third).

Returning starters (10): So. Ryan Pomrinca (39-5, D3, R2, S7) 120; Sr. Matt Moncourtois (28-10, D1) 120-126; Jr. Eric Martin (15-18, D4) 126-132; Jr. Mike Ciavarro (28-9, D2) 145-152; So. Michael Sicola (6-12) 138-145; Sr. Brandon Loftus (12-19) 170; Sr. Liam Korbul (39-5, D1, R2, S7) 182-195; Sr. Dan Pepe (31-9, D2, R4) 195-220; Sr. Brad Straight 220-285; Jr. Anthony Buygi 285.

Key losses: Matt Doscher (19-17, D3); Beau Vrancken (32-4, D1, R2); Joe Ragsdale (30-10, D2, R4).

Key returnees: Jr. Joe Guzzo 160.

Promising newcomers: So. Paul Robinson 106; So. Luke Approvato 106; Fr. Derek Ciavarro 113; Jr. Jim Hughes 138; Fr. Brian Smolinsky 138; Sr. Brendan Balzano 152.

Outlook: Lions are coming off a fine campaign and looking to build off that momentum with the return of 10 starters. Moncourtois and Pomrinca (seventh in the state at 113 last year) anchor the light weights, while Korbul and Pepe give the Annandale-based school strength up top where other teams are sorely lacking. Keep an eye on freshmen Ciavarro and Smolinsky. Depth is an issue, so avoiding injuries is crucial. This group could be the class of Hunterdon County and is expected to challenge for division and sectional honors in a rugged North 2, Group 4 bracket.

North Warren Patriots

Coach: Matt Parzero (23-17, third season).

2011-12 record: 14-7, 3-2 Skyland Conference Valley Division (third).

Returning starters (7): So. Gino Fluri (6-16) 106-113; Jr. Matt Ritchie (21-10, D4) 120; Sr. Mason Ryzoff (18-11, D4) 138; Jr. Jack Norgard (8-13) 145; Jr. Johnny Hayes (15-10) 152; So. Will O'Connell (8-11) 220; Sr. Chris Longyhore (22-8, D4) 285.

Key losses: Michael Staufenberger (27-9, D3); Dillon Torppey (14-14); Dan Hauck (24-7, D1).

Key returnees: So. Zach Jones 106-113; Jr. Devon Lyons 126; Jr. Brian Turner 132; Jr. Greg Galante (4-7, D4) 195.

Promising newcomers: Fr. Anthony Duardo 138; Jr. Nico Fluri 145; So. Jack Butromovich 152; Jr. Alex Hladick 160; Sr. Vincent Rucereto 170; Jr. Scott Palmer 182.

Outlook: Patriots, who had a nice run last year, move over from the Skyland Conference to the NJAC this season. Ritchie, a former district champion, and Longyhore will lead the way, along with Ryzoff, as North tries to overcome the losses of region qualifier Staufenberger and district champion Hauck. If this team can minimize bonus points it should be able to finish in the upper half of the division and be around the same win total as last year.

Phillipsburg Stateliners

Coach: Dave Post (29-9, third season).

2011-12 record: 16-3, 6-0 Skyland Conference Delaware Division champion (first).

Returning starters (7): Sr. Zach Fisher (28-11, D1) 113; So. Steve Friedman (21-16, D1) 120; Sr. Anthony Johnson (15-12, D3, R2) 132; So. Max Elling (25-12, D2, R3) 138; Sr. Andrew Kaluzny (16-14, D1, R4) 145; So. Jimmy Schuitema (31-12, D3, R3) 152; Jr. Jake Kocsis (19-12, D4) 160.

Key losses: V.J. Delmonico (28-13, D1, R3); Joe Moyer (20-18, D3); Devin Grade (17-15, D4); Shaun Maloy (22-12, D2); Derek Pierson (13-10, D2, R4); Brandon Hull (37-3, D1, R1, S1); Anthony Pare (34-8, D1, R3).

Key returnees: Jr. Garrett Wolfinger 138; Jr. Broderick Bupivi 170; Sr. Kyle Kinney 195; Sr. Jarrett Williams 285.

Promising newcomers: Fr. Brandon Paetzell 106; Fr. DJ Wissing 120; So. Corey Zinsmeister 126 (transfer from Easton, Pa.); So. Donald Agans 132; So. Yan Ondele 170; So. Joe Maso 182; So. Tim Hinkle 220.

Outlook: Stateliners are coming off a banner year -- stunning Brick Memorial behind Fisher's big win in the final bout to claim the Group 4 championship. Half of that team is gone, including Brandon Hull, the school's first state champion since 1996. But the cupboard, as usual, is far from bare. Fisher, who sustained a major hand injury prior to the Region 1 Tournament, will anchor a fine group of light weights, along with district champion Friedman. Paetzell is an accomplished youth wrestler and bears watching, along with sophomore state qualifiers Elling and Schuitema. Solid lineup from 106-160. If the upper weights prove reliable, and that's key, there's no reason this team can't repeat in Toms River.

Voorhees Vikings

Coach: Eric Hall (44-9, third season).

2011-12 record: 22-4, 5-1 Skyland Conference Raritan Division (T-first).

Returning starters (8): Jr. Cody Ihling (21-13, D2) 113; Jr. Thomas Bieshke (21-11) 126; Sr. Tyler Yarnell (18-16, D2) 132; Jr. Christian Okulicz (20-14, D4) 138; Jr. Jordan Juliano (9-11) 160, Sr. Jadaen Bernstein (39-3, D1, R1, S7) 170; Sr. Nick Ruggiero (28-10, D2) 182; Sr. Kyle Levy (13-14) 195.

Key losses: Walter Gonsiewski (22-10, D3); Ronnie Honickel (37-5, D1, R3); Steven Baker (20-12); Chet Stivers (20-11); Max Lamport (24-10, D3).

Key returnees: So. Thomas Riley 126; Jr. Mike Muscatello 138; Jr. William Gonsiewski 145; Sr. Josh Hausler 152; Jr. Conner Heft 152; Jr. Taz Salvetti 170; Sr. Emilio Guevara 220; So. Alex Fischetti 285.

Promising newcomers: So. Harley Sacks 106; Jr. Dylan Raposo 106; So. Jon Blunk 106; Fr. Kyle DiNapoli 106; Fr. Garrett Birchenough 120; Jr. Merritt Francis 285.

Outlook: Lots of excitement surrounding this program as Hall enters his third season at the helm of his alma mater. The Vikes have plenty of returning talent, including district finalists Yarnell and Ruggiero. Senior Jadaen Bernstein, a two-time state medal winner and finalist in 2011, is among the top wrestlers in the state and enters the season seven wins shy of 100. This group should be pretty balanced and that is key for success in the area. Among the goals is to go deeper in the sectionals after a first-round exit last year and to beat all Hunterdon County opponents, according to Hall.

Warren Hills Blue Streaks

Coach: Jarrett Hosbach (91-74, eighth season).

2011-12 record: 14-6, 2-3 Skyland Conference Raritan Division (fourth).

Returning starters (10): So. Max Nauta (33-8, D2, R2) 113-120; Jr. Tai Adetula (22-5) 126; Sr. Joe Kratochvil (24-14, D1, R2) 132; Jr. Justin Pidoto (4-4, D3-2011) 138; Sr. Kevin Bundschuh (7-10) 145; Jr. Nate Detrick (10-10) 152; Jr. Ryan Ostir (9-13, D4) 170; Jr. Ryan Witner (10-16, D3) 195; So. Andrew Pacheco (9-5) 285.

Key losses: Chris Greenwald (17-5); KC Wanamaker (19-8); Ryker Kern (15-11, D3); Dan Smith (26-6, D3).

Key returnees: So. Austin Pidoto 106; So. Christian Wanamaker 106; So. John Fluck (8-8, D3) 113-120; Jr. Evan Butka (6-9) 160; Jr. Steve Cleaver (4-5) 182; Sr. Tyler Bridygham (2-7) 220.

Promising newcomers: Fr. Carsen Johnson 106; Jr. Bassem Ramadan 120; Fr. Shane Deemer 138; Fr. Anthony Roessner 145; So. Anthony Casciano 160; So. Will Turner 160; Fr. Kurt Nemeth 170.

Outlook: Blue Streaks are a program on the rise as the fruit from a loaded youth program is starting to take shape on the high school scene. Nauta had one of the best freshman campaigns in school history with appearances in the district and region finals, while Kratochvil stunned everyone with his district title and region runner-up finish. Because the football team is playing so late into the year, expect the upper weights to take time rounding into form. As a result, you might not see the team's best lineup for a few weeks. Overall, this is a very solid team that unfortunately will see state power South Plainfield down the road in the same North 2, Group 3 section.

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