Delsea Dominates District 31
By Sentinel Sports Writer Jacob Keppen
The District 31 tournament saw domination by hosts Delsea once again, even with an almost entirely new set of opponents. Due to redistricting: Woodstown, Buena, Kingsway, Millville, Vineland, Cumberland, Salem, and Schalick all moved out of district 31. Replacing them were: Highland, Timber Creek, Absegami, Pinelands, Mainland, Overbrook, Pitman, and Gloucester Catholic. The only team still in district 31 from 2016 was Pennsville.
Delsea was District 31 champions once again, sitting at the top with 227.5 points. Highland were 2nd with 183 points, and Timber Creek not far behind in 3rd with 149.5 points.
At 120 Delsea junior Edison Echevarria and Highland sophomore Jeremiah Clark wrestled. In the quarterfinals, Echevarria pinned Danny Diaz, while Clark defeated Jesse Bishop 5-0. In the semifinals Echevarria pinned Nathan Pasquarell, while Clark pinned Justin Jaeger. In the final Echevarria, who was the district 31 runner up and region 8 champion, defeated Clark 11-2.
On finally winning District 31, Echevarria said after the match “It was a comeback from last year because I lost in the District finals… It may not be that big but it’s the first step towards ending the season off right.”
Nobody had a better day at District 31 than Delsea sophomore Nick Bennett. At 138 Bennett was the #1 seed, and he defended his ranking. In the quarterfinals Bennett quickly pinned Raymond Knappenberger in 53 seconds. In the semifinals Bennett dominated Jacob Luta to a 3:33 15-0 Tech Fall. In the finals against Mainland’s Antonio Yeoman, Bennett finished it quick with a 30 second pin.
“It felt very amazing after I pinned this kid” Bennett exclaimed after his thrilling pin.”I was a little nervous when I stepped out, but then after I pinned him I was so relieved.” Nothing captured the true thrill of winning your first district title then when Bennett said “You don’t know how good this feels” while sitting on top of the podium.
Delsea had another champion at 152 in senior Seth Summers. Summers pinned Eric Burns in the quarterfinals, and then pinned Anthony Rosario in the semifinals. In the finals Summers dominated once again, defeating Pitman sophomore Anthony Bevilacqua via 11-2 major decision.
All eyes were on Delsea’s Bill Janzer at 170, as they usually are. Janzer, a junior, is #1 in the state at 170. Janzer’s only losses this season came at the hands of Don Bosco’s Dominick Mandarino, and Bound Brook’s Mekhi Lewis. Janzer is one of the favorites to be in the State 170 final, and the road to Boardwalk Hall started with domination at districts. Janzer pinned Baaree Oliver in 1:21. He pinned Noah Raine even quicker (57 seconds) in the semifinal. In the final Janzer pinned Andrew Marcucci in 2:35.
At 195 Delsea junior Tommy Maxwell defeated Timber Creek senior Andres Camacho 7-0. Prior to the finals, Maxwell pinned both Anthony Treger and John Miller in under a minute. At 113 Highland senior Seth Henry wrestled Delsea sophomore John Patterson. Both had forfeits in the quarterfinals, and both pinned their semifinal opponent. In the final Henry won via 11-3 major decision.
At 160 Delsea junior Mason Maxwell wrestled Timber Creek senior Blaine Shade in the finals. Maxwell reached the finals by pinning his first 2 opponents, while shade defeated his opponents via 22-8 major decision and 3:45 pinfall. In the final Shade got the best of maxwell, winning 12-7. At 182 Delsea senior Vince DeGeorge lost to Pineland senior Chris Nielson 10-9 in one of the matches of the night. At 220 undefeated Highland junior Devon Starks defeated Delsea senior Justin Moore via 17-7 major decision. The wrestlers from District 31 moving on to Region 8 are (In order of place):
- Nicholas Digiacomo (Timber Creek)
- Felix Torres (Absegami)
- Domenic Meglino (Highland)
- Seth Henry (Highland)
- John Patterson (Delsea)
- Kameron Jenkins (Timber Creek)
- Edison Echevarria (Delsea)
- Jeremiah Clark (Highland)
- Nathan Pasquarello (Timber Creek)
- Justin Cariss (Highland)
- Domenic Augello (Timber Creek)
- Trent Johnson (Pennsville)
- Christian Bobe (Timber Creek)
- James Geigold (Absegami)
- Michael Mucciarone (Mainland)
- Nick Bennett (Delsea)
- Antonio Yeoman (Mainland)
- Jacob Luta (Pitman)
- Tom Cuffari (Highland)
- Brennan Richardson (Pinelands)
- Malachi Whitfield (Overbrook)
- Seth Summers (Delsea)
- Anthony Bevilacqua (Pitman)
- Peyton Jones (Timber Creek)
- Blaine Shade (Timber Creek)
- Mason Maxwell (Delsea)
- Zane Coles (Pitman)
- Bill Janzer (Delsea)
- Andrew Marcucci (Absegami)
- Jared Colbert (Highland)
- Christopher Nielson (Pinelands)
- Vince DeGeorge (Delsea)
- Joe Tripoli (Highland)
- Tommy Maxwell (Delsea)
- Andres Camacho (Timber Creek)
- Kevin Bobb (Pennsville)
- Devon Starks (Highland)
- Justin Moore (Delsea)
- Pasquale Locantore (Overbrook)
- Kody Wood (Pennsville)
- Chris Duddy (Highland)
- Deshon Alexander (Overbrook)