WINDSOR – What has been said to be the longest running wrestling tournament in New York State, the 61st annual Windsor Christmas Tournament was a successful outing for a few Chenango County schools.
The tournament field was comprised of a maximum of 15 wrestlers per school and hosted 28 teams from NY and PA.
Norwich entered with tournament not having won a team title since 1992.
But their hopes of bringing it home in 2017, 25 years later, became very large when they left Thursday night. Heading home, the Purple Tornado had an 11 point lead over the second place team, Mount Sinai.
The Bears of BGAH weren’t far behind as they left Thursday night in fourth place with 55 points.
When the teams entered the gym Friday morning, 13 county wrestlers were slated for semifinals matches.
Norwich’s Dante Geislinger kicked off the day in the 99 pound weight class. Pinning all of his opponents to get to his semifinal match, Geislinger faced Brendan Goodrich of Mount Sinai. The match ended in with another Geislinger pin at 3:55, securing him the first spot in the finals for the county wrestlers.
The next weight class wrestling their semifinal bouts were the 106 pounders. That included Cooper Rice of Oxford. Rice defeated Norwich’s Andrew Brown by a major decision to get into the the semifinals and continued his path into the finals by defeating another tough opponent, Zach Levey of Horseheads.
Levey had a 7-0 lead heading into the third and final period of the match. That’s when Rice kicked it up a notch and found a way to make an amazing comeback with about seven seconds left as he landed a reversal.
Norwich’s Nick Glanville was the next to wrestle Friday morning in the semis, one of the two 113 pound matches. Also pinning his way that point, Glanville faced Jordan Sartin of Saratoga Springs. The two dueled it out for the full three periods with Sartin taking a 1-0 decision and a final appearance. Glanville headed to the wrestle back bracket still looking to place in the tournament. Glanville won the first round with a 2-0 decision win but lost in the third place match by a pin near the end of the second period.
BGAH’s Brody Oleksak entered Friday’s placing day of the tournament set up in the 120 pound semifinals against Indian River’s Logan Patterson. Patterson finished the match with a 8-3 decision, sending Oleksak to the wrestle back rounds as well.
Purple Tornado Mikey Squires saw his first time on the mat this season in the 126 pound weight class of the tournament. Squires faced Dylan Wilmot of BGAH one round prior to the semifinals. Squires took a 12-4 decision over Wilmot to land his spot in the finals, Norwich’s second wrestler to reach in the early Friday matches.
Wilmot’s loss sent him to wrestle backs in hopes of placing in the tournament.
In the 132 pound weight class, Chenango County had two wrestlers on separate sides of the semifinal bracket. Eli Rodriguez of Norwich and Cody Ferrara of BGAH were on the mat at the same time for their bouts, and what could have possibly set up a county finals. Rodriguez defeated Deposit/Hancock’s Cooper Hall with a 5-2 decision.
Ferrara’s match ended with a close 1-0 decision in favor of Horseheads Jacob Scibek. A much anticipated match between the two of Rodriguez and Ferrara would have to wait until later in the season. Ferrara finished sixth for the tournament.
BGAH’s Ben Bivar dropped a weight class from his Clyde Cole title weight of 145 as he wrestled in the 138 pound bracket. Bivar faced Ben Howe of Elmira in what ended up being a very physical match between the two. But Bivar came out the winner and secured his spot in the finals with a 12-6 decision.
Another BGAH wrestler had a shot to reach the finals early Friday morning for the 152 pound weight class. Austin Eggleston reached the semifinals by winning with a pin and a decision. Eggleston faced Cooper Mosier of Towanda. Mosier got the better outcome of the two as he wrestled to a 9-3 decision over Eggleston. Eggleston ultimately finished third, winning by a pin at 3:34 in the match.
BGAH Bears’ Shane Hoover had reached the semifinals in the 160 pound weight class by way of two quick pins. Hoover was tested in his semis match when he wrestled Tanner Kennedy of Panther Valley. He prevailed, taking a 3-0 decision to give the Bears a second wrestler in the finals.
Norwich’s Ty Rifanburg faced BGAH’s Mike Wilmot on Thursday. It was Rifanburg’s third match of the first day a he took down two other wrestlers before taking on Wilmot, one of the two being Greene’s Justin Carmen. Carmen put up a fight taking Rifanburg into the second round before he was pinned in a time of 3:17. Wilmot reached the match against Rifanburg by a technical decision of 15-0.
Wilmot and Rifanburg went the distance of three full periods but Rifanburg was crowned the winner with a 6-0 decision win over Wilmot. Wilmot wrestled his way through the wrestle back rounds of Friday to finish in sixth for the tournament, adding to the Bears team point total.
Rifanburg topped a tough Chris Eames of Horseheads in a close 7-5 decision, a decision that was fought for every second for both wrestlers...