Grapplers battle for Waterford title

Shaun Wagner twists his opponent onto his back during a victory over Conard. Southington went 4-0 last week to improve to 14-1.



The Blue Knight wrestling team remained undefeated in the CCC this past week after securing their seventh conference win, going undefeated at the Waterford Duals.

Win vs. Conard

FEB. 1—The Knights began the week with a 67-9 triumph over Conard at home on Wednesday. Although the Chieftains didn’t score their first points of the match until the 10th bout, Southington coach Derek Dion still thought that Conard wrestled tough.

“All their kids fought really hard,” the coach said. “We had more experience than them in some weight classes, but they fought their butts off and really worked hard. I was impressed with their effort.”

Southington’s only two losses came in the 170 and 220-pound weight classes.

“Their 220 is very good,” said Dion. “He was second in Class LL last year. He’s just really tough. That was a match that we were hoping to have go our way. Their 170-pounder is pretty new, but was tough as well.”

Sam Mena (170) wrestled in his second varsity match of the season. Although he fell to a 7-4 decision, he still impressed his coach.

“He came out for the team late, but he’s really a tough character,” the coach said. “He doesn’t know anything yet, but he does have a martial arts background. I wish we had more time with him because I think he could really be something.”

Jacob Cardozo (113), Tagan Welch (138), Tim Budnik (145), Paul Calo (160), and Jimmy Starr (285) each landed pins in the match. Cardozo recorded the fastest pin at 1:12 into his bout. The Chieftains forfeited the 106, 126, 182, and 195-pound weight classes.

Waterford Duals

FEB. 4—The Knights wrapped up the week when they traveled to Waterford High School on Saturday to compete in the Waterford Duals. Southington was perfect on the day after coming away with three wins with victories over Windham, 37-29, and Waterford, 64-15, defeating Ledyard, 49-21, in the championship.

Austin Abacherli (152/160), Calo (170), Richie Rivera (220), Shaun Wagner (132), Welch, and Budnik went undefeated on the day. Calo and Welch landed pins in all three of their bouts.

The Knights will be back on the mat this week when they travel to New Britain for their regular season finale on Wednesday, Feb. 8. Southington is currently 14-1 overall.

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