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Six wrestlers with state ties at NCAA  Div. 3 tournament 

HERSHEY, Pa., March 12 — Six wrestlers with Connecticut ties will be participating in the NCAA Division III national championships this weekend in Hershey, Pa. Wrestling begins Saturday for 180 participants.

Coast Guard’s Nate Giorgio (133) and Mike Shermot (174) will compete along with Wesleyan’s Ryan Sblendorio (174). Madison’s Jake Savoca (141) and Newington’s Chris Chorzepa (184) will be representing Williams College while Somers’ Kyle Foster (285) will be representing Roger Williams.

Giorgio, a senior, is the No. 1 ranked wrestler at 133 with a 38-0 record. He is a two-time All-American competing in his fourth NCAA tournament. He was eighth at 133 a year ago and fourth as a freshman at 125. His teammate Mike Shermot is a junior (21-4) and is making his first NCAA tournament appearance.

Chorzepa, a sophomore, is seeded fourth at 184 with a record of 38-1. He is one of four Williams wrestlers competing in the NCAA tournament.

“It’s great to bring a large delegation to the national championships,” said Williams coach Scott Honecker. “There are some real hidden advantages to having multiple guys going. We saw it last year when Chorzepa and (teammate Jorge) Lopez both caught fire last year at the NCAAs. They were really challenging one another to take their wrestling to the next level and the results spoke for themselves.”

Chorzepa earned All-American honors a year ago finishing third at 184. This year, he won 36 consecutive matches before being upset in the NCAA Northeast Regional semifinals. He has been ranked as high as No. 2 in the nation this season and is among the Division III leaders in falls and tech falls. Chorzepa is seeded fourth.

“The bracket at the NCAAs has nothing but tough guys,” Honecker said. “They need to enter every match on a mission to win and win decisively. For now, they all need to head into each match like it’s the most important one of the weekend. They are poised for success, but we have to keep them focused on wrestling their best every match.”

Savoca began the year at 149 pounds but dropped to 141 to make room for junior Tim Garripoli, who also qualified for the NCAA tournament. Savoca was 23-7 at 149 and is 9-1 at 141 for an overall record of 33-8. He is unseeded.

“The guy who can really benefit from this is Jake Savoca as a freshman in his first trip to the NCAAs,” Honecker said. “If he can follow the lead of the veterans, he has the talent to really break out this weekend.”

Roger Williams’ sophomore Kyle Foster, who is from Somers, brings a 30-5 record into the competition at 285 pounds. Foster is one of five wrestlers from Roger Williams in the tournament. He qualified with a third place finish at the recent NCAA Northeast Regional.

Wesleyan’s Ryan Sblendorio (175) is making his first NCAA Division III appearance. He is 18-7 on the year.

2015 NCAA Division III national championships
At Hershey, Pa.
Brackets
NCAA Div. 3 wrestling

Recent NCAA Div. 3 Connecticut 
All-Americans

Chris Chorzepa (Newington), Williams, 184, 3rd, 2014
Brendan Ward (Waterford), Johnson & Wales, 184, 2nd 2010
Corey Paulish (Ridgefield), Williams, 141, 4th, 2009
Craig Vedrani (Guilford), Springfield, 157, 6th, 1999
Mike Gaydos (Bunnell), Springfield, 197, 6th, 1999

2015 All NEWA Team
125: Andrew Gauthier, Bridgewater State
125: Brian Amato, WPI
133: Nate Giorgio, Coast Guard
141: Michael Ferinde, Johnson & Wales
157: Jorge Lopez, Williams
157: Ty Herzog, Roger Williams
157: CJ Luth, Southern Maine
157: Frankie Weir, Western New England
157: Markus Jacobo, Daniel Webster
165: Dylan Foley, Springfield College
165: Zach Gibson, Norwich
184: Chris Perrault, Plymouth State
197: Isaiah Bellamy, Wesleyan
197: Taylor Hennessy, Trinity
285: Terrance Jean-Jacques, RIC

New England Wrestling Association (NEWA)
Individual rankings
Feb. 17, 2015 (Rankings No. 6)

125 Pounds:
1. Brian Amato – WPI
2. Bobby Jordan – Johnson & Wales
3. Nick Barbaria – Roger Williams
4. Matt Morris – Williams –
5. Andrew Gauthier – Bridgewater State
6. Jonathan Murray- Rhode Island Coll.

133 Pounds:
1. Nate Giorgio – Coast Guard
2. Paul Sughrue – Bridgewater State
3. Justin Colon – Johnson & Wales
4. Tyler Keane – Springfield
5. Frank Crippen- Wesleyan
6. Dan Evangelakos – Williams
– 
141 Pounds:
1. Mike Ferinde – Johnson & Wales
2. Ricando Cole – Rhode Island Coll.
3. Jake Savoca – Williams –
4. Justin Cochran – Roger Williams
5. Tyler Tilbe – WPI
6. Matt McAllister – Coast Guard

149 Pounds:
1. Joey Gaccione – Johnson & Wales
2. Dan Del Gallo –  Southern Maine
3. Shawn Giblin- Rhode Island Coll.
4. Tim Garripoli – Williams
5. Dan Downes – Roger Williams
6. Ed Pierce – Wesleyan

157 Pounds:
1. Jorge Lopez – Williams
2. Eric Hamrick- Springfield
3. Ty Herzog – Roger Williams
4. Ray Welch – Plymouth State
5. Tanner Burke – WPI
6. Carl Luth –  Southern Maine

165 Pounds:
1. Francisco Colom – Roger Williams
2. Dylan Foley – Springfield
3. Sean Prell – Johnson & Wales
4. Kyle Gaffney – Williams
5. Andrew Tanner – WPI
6. Matt Libby – Rhode Island Coll.

174 Pounds:
1. Danny Ressler – Roger Williams
2. Mike Shermot – Coast Guard-
3. Will Burns – Norwich Univ.
4. Ryan Sblendorio – Wesleyan
5. Justin Marsh – WPI
6. Dae Sean Brown – Johnson and Wales

184 Pounds:
1. Chris Chorzepa – Williams
2. Jon Deupree –  Southern Maine
3. Chris Perreault – Plymouth State
4. Joe Albina  – Roger Williams
5. Mike Labell – Johnson & Wales
6. Marc Wagner- Coast Guard

197 Pounds:
1. David Welch – Roger Williams
2. Hunter Ayen – Springfield
3. Isaiah Bellamy – Wesleyan
4. Sean Fagan –  Southern Maine
5. Philip Azzari – Coast Guard
6. Cody Carrillo- Plymouth State

285 Pounds:
1. Terrance Jean-Jacques – Rhode Island Coll.
2. Kyle Foster – Roger Williams
3. Phil Kelly- Johnson & Wales
4. Marc Howard – Coast Guard
5. Jake Benedict – Springfield
6. Kyle McGuire – Trinity

Gerry deSimas, Jr., is the editor and founder of Connecticut Wrestling Online. He is an award-winning writer and has been covering sports in Connecticut and New England for more than 30 years. He was inducted into the New England High School Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2018.

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