Magnoli wins SWC title at 189 to lead Weston wrestlers
Carmine Magnoli capped off a perfect run against his South-West Conference counterparts with a first-place performance at the SWC Wrestling Championships at Brookfield High Feb. 11 and 12. Weston placed 12th as a team with 31 points. New Milford won the title with 250.5 points.
Magnoli captured the 189-pound division title with a 5-2 decision over Newtown's Aaron Nezvesky in the final round.
"It's a pretty unbelievable feeling," Magnoli said. "I started out strong and I finished strong."
Magnoli, who placed third in the conference championships a year ago, said he had been training hard with an eye on a run of success in the postseason.
"He's been pushing himself real hard," said Weston Coach Mario Federici, adding that Magnoli has put forth extra effort in practices throughout the campaign. "He always has the first guy to come, last guy to leave type of mentality."
The Weston senior became only the sixth wrestler from his school in the last 22 years to claim a title.
A four-year Trojan grappler, he is the only team member with more than two years of experience.
Federici said the Weston wrestlers, who haven't had a feeder program throughout the years, begin their high school careers without previous exposure to the mats. There's a lot of catchup that has to be done, and the coach was pleased with the efforts of his inexperienced team members. "They're on the right path," the coach said.
A pair of Weston wrestlers reached the semifinals of the consolation round: Matt Brooks at 152 and Geranimo Valin at 140.
Magnoli, who went 23-1 in the regular season, will compete in the Class M State Championships in Hartford this weekend. He's the No. 2 seed behind 29-0 Mark Dilley of Thomaston. "I'm really looking forward to it, and seeing how well I can do," Magnoli said.
Timothy Levene will represent the Trojans in the 103-pound weight division as the No. 12 seed; at 112 is No. 19 Richard Prackup; at 125 is No. 14 Remy Babson-Smith; at 130 is No. 23 James Keeney; at 135 is No. 18 Nick Bertram; at 140 is No. 9 Valin; at 145 is No. 14 Christian Ameden; at 152 is No. 16 Brooks; at 160 is No. 19 Christopher Piscatelli; at 171 is No. 22 Ryan O'Connell; and at 215 is No. 18 Patrick McGlone.