NEW CANAAN — Trumbull High’s Joe Palmieri, Travis Longo and Jack Ryan won titles and coach Charlie Anderson’s Eagles placed second to Danbury High at the Joe Sikorski FCIAC championships on Saturday.
“This is a stepping stone for us,” Anderson said. “We had a real good Friday night and did okay today. I was happy with their intensity as a team.”
No. 2 seed Palmieri, who earned his 100th career win in the semifinals, met No. 1 seed Andrew Nanai from Greenwich in the 182-pound final.
The Trumbull senior escaped early in the third to tie things at 3, but Nanai got the takedown for a 5-3 lead. In five seconds, Palmieri got a reversal and two back points to go on top 7-5 with 29 seconds remaining. Sporting a mouse above his left eye in gaining the near fall, Palmieri held off Nanai to win 7-6.
“I lost to that kid (Nanai) last year right here,” said Palmieri, who went on to win the Class LL title. “He’s beaten me four times. This feels really good. Before, I let him dictate. This time I went after him.”
Longo won the 113-pound title with an 18-3 victory by technical fall at the final whistle over Greenwich High’s No. 2 seed Carlos DeWinter.
“I love it, it is what we train for,” the top-seeded Longo said about adding another FCIAC title to his chest of medals that include 2018 Class L and State Open titles. “To win like this is amazing. That guy (DeWinter) has the strongest neck. He kept bridging (on Longo pin attempts).”
Once in each period, Longo was in position to win by fall only to be slowed and denied his goal by the neck-bridge that kept the Cardinal off his back. Longo led 8-2 and 11-2 at the breaks and was up 15-3 when his final near fall closed out the bout at the two-minute mark.
Ryan brought a 39-1 record into his 120-pound final against Danbury’s 30-5 Tyler Johnson.
Ryan had a takedown with 43 seconds left in the second period for a 4-2 lead. He let Johnson up to open the third, then the Hatter recorded a takedown for a 5-4 lead with 1:15 remaining. A stalling point made it 5-5, and Ryan escaped at the 46-second mark for a 6-5 lead. He withstood a bruising finish to win his first FCIAC title.
“I lost to the same kid last year in the semis,” Ryan said. “I guess you can call it redemption. It was a tough three periods, but sometimes in practice we’ll go five or six minutes at a time. We have an amazing team.”
Michael Longo placed second at 106 pounds, where the freshman lost a 2-0 triple overtime decision to Danbury’s Kai Odell.
Five stalemates marked the matchup, that saw Longo twice chase down the Hatter to deny him escape points going out of bounds. After a scoreless one-minute overtime session from the neutral position, Longo was on bottom for 30 seconds in the second session. He tried to roll to an escape, but Odell caught him for two back points with eight seconds on the clock. On top for the mandatory 30-second third overtime, Longo get half a cradle in with 10 seconds left, but Odell posted a leg and wouldn’t budge at the whistle.
Matt Ryan was runner-up by a 5-1 count to New Canaan’s Justin Mastroianni at 138 pounds.
David Castaldo wrestled back to place third at 132 pounds. The senior had takedowns in the first and third periods in his consolation final with Mitch Grimes from Greenwich. When the Cardinal made a great reversal with one minute remaining, Castaldo kept working to his base to win the 4-2 decision.
Jon Kosak placed fourth at 126 pounds.
Matthew Ryan was fourth in the heavyweight division.
George Bomann was fifth at 145 pounds.
William Holmes was fifth at 152 pounds.
Jason Mercado was fifth at 170 pounds.