Keith Lanfear Photo
ALBANY – Six of the nine Chenango County wrestlers placed at this weekend’s New York State Wrestling Championship. Norwich’s 99-pound Dante Geislinger came home a State Champion, the first for the school since 2015 when the Tristan Rifanburg and Frankie Garcia both brought home a title.
In front of a packed house at the Times Union Center in Albany, Geislinger came back from an early 2-0 deficit to top Section III’s Devin Coleman of Camden by a final of 9-4 for the decision win in the 99-pound Division II final Saturday night in the NYSPHSAA Wrestling Championships.
Geislinger reached the finals by taking down top-seeded Mason Bush of Central Valley. Bush and Geislinger had met three times this season prior to Saturday morning’s semifinal match. In close losses the first the meetings,
Geislinger avenged by taking a 6-2 decision win, pulling off the big upset.
The senior from Camden had only been beaten twice this season prior to the championship tournament. Coleman scored two points by a taking Geislinger down to the mat after 1:15 into the match.
The first period ended with Coleman holding the 2-0 advantage. Geislinger choose bottom but Coleman gave up point by choosing to go neutral, making the score 2-1.
With about 50 seconds left in the second period, Geislinger set up his shot that led to a takedown and then three back points for a 5-2 lead. Geislinger added another two back points as he put Coleman on his back again late in the second period.
Geislinger added another point with Coleman against deciding to go to neutral position. With a 9-2 lead in the third, Coleman took Geislinger down and tried to set up the comeback win. But the Norwich wrestlers lead was too much and ended with the 9-4 decision win, grabbing the state title.
As the fifth-seed, Geislinger was the only Section IV title winner and one of three in the finals.
With five wrestlers in the tournament, Norwich took second as team with 64 points and finished just seven points behind first-place Central Valley.