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Sports Archives — The Altamont Enterprise, February 11, 2010

Tough going for Dutch at wrestling sectionals

By Jordan J. Michael

CLIFTON PARK –– Going zero for seven is never fun.

Mike Lainhart (96 pounds), Kevin Bates (119), Ben Moon (130), Travis Wolanski (135), Eugene Sellie (171), Matt Miller (215), and Kevin McCarthy (215) all made it to the semi-final round for Guilderland at Saturday’s Class A wrestling sectionals at Shenendehowa. Not one made it to the finals.

“Watching everyone lose was definitely a wake-up call,” said Head Coach Korey Rogotzke. Four of the seven were projected to be in the finals. “They were wrestling too tight, nervous, and cautious. They did open up in the consolation rounds though.”

Lainhart, Bates, Sellie, and Miller each came back to place third and Wolanski and McCarthy finished fourth. Moon placed fifth. The Dutch placed fifth out of 11 teams with 116 points.

Shenendehowa dominated the event with four champions and five who placed second.

Rogotzke said that Lainhart gave Guilderland its best overall performance of the day. Being a fourth seed and just an eighth-grader, Lainhart was seconds away from beating top-seed Shawn Berman of Albany in the semis. It was a scrappy match and Lainhart couldn’t get a clean shot in the final seconds, losing 9 to 8.

“Lainhart wrestled with focus and maturity,” said Rogotzke.

Berman had pinned Lainhart a week before at the Big Ten Tournament. “I worked really hard to get ready for him again,” said Lainhart after the loss on Saturday. “I tried to stay off my knees. I’m still satisfied, even though I lost.”

Sellie’s getting pinned by Colonie’s Joe Shell was probably the biggest surprise of the semi-final round because Sellie was the top seed. Sellie tied the score up at 4-to-4 in the final round, but Shell pinned him with what Colonie Head Coach Matt Tarullo called the “double grapes.”

“It’s where the legs and toes wrap around,” Tarullo said. “It’s just like a grape vine growing down a fence.”

“My hips got turned and I got caught,” said Sellie as he paced back and forth in disbelief. “I should have been more aggressive. I can’t let myself get caught like that.”

Jimmy McLaughlin, who came up from junior varsity this season to wrestle at 145 pounds for Guilderland, lost to Dan Matrazzo from Saratoga in the final seconds of an emotional match. Matrazzo went on to finish fourth.

“I’ve had a good experience and I learned a lot over the last couple of weeks,” McLaughlin said. “My skills have improved dramatically since I moved up to varsity.”

Lainhart, Bates, Wolanski, Sellie, Miller, and McCarthy, Moon, and Christian Kernozek will be competing in this weekend’s state qualifier in Glen Falls. Rogotzke is confident that all eight wrestlers will do better than they did on Saturday at sectionals.

“My experience with our guys is that we’ll use this as motivation to wrestle more aggressively and confident at the qualifiers,” said Rogotzke. “Wrestling is about handling adversity and growing from it, moving forward and earning success. We will be a different team in Glens Falls.”

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