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Four state wrestlers qualify for NCAA Div. III nationals at Northeast Regional

Southington’s Zack Murillo (125) earned his first trip to the NCAA Division III national championships by finishing second at the Northeast Regional on Sunday. (Lianne Yun photo courtesy of Wesleyan Athletics)

PROVIDENCE, R.I., February 24, 2019 – Four Connecticut wrestlers earned trips to the NCAA Division III national championships on Sunday at the NCAA Division III Northeast Regional.

Windsor Locks’ Khamri Thomas of Johnson & Wales won his second straight Northeast Regional title with a victory at 184 pounds and helped lead his team to a third straight Northeast Regional championship.

New Fairfield’s Taylor Shay of Roger Williams won the Northeast Regional title at 165 pounds while Southington’s Zach Murillo of Wesleyan finished second at 125 pounds after dropping an overtime decision. Glastonbury’s Joseph Rossetti of Williams College finished third at 141 pounds.

The top three finishers in each weight class earned a bid to the NCAA Division III championships on March 8-9 in Roanoke, Virginia.

Johnson & Wales is sending nine wrestlers to the NCAA championships – the most ever by a New England school. The Wildcats also set a Northeast Regional tournament record with 187 points. With three individual champions and five wrestlers qualify for the national tournament, Coast Guard had their best-ever finish at the regional and took second place. Coast Guard was second with 120 points, followed by Roger Williams (117), WPI (84½) and Castleton (83½).

Thomas was named the tournament’s most outstanding wrestler while Johnson & Wales head coach Lonnie Morris was named Coach of the Year and his assistant Brian Allen was named Assistant Coach of the Year.

Thomas went 4-0 in the tournament to win his second straight Northeast Regional title. He won his first matches by pin and beat Coast Guard’s Paul Detweiler, 5-2 in the semifinals, securing the match with a takedown with nine seconds left.

In the final, Thomas beat No. 2 seed John Boyle of Western New England, 10-2. A four-point near fall in the second period but Thomas on track to the title.

Johnson & Wales had four individual champions. One was senior Jay Albis, who became the third Wildcat in program history to win three Northeast Regional titles. Albis, who is ranked No. 1 in the nation, beat Murillo at 125 in overtime, 5-3. It was 3-3 after two periods and Albis won it with a takedown with 16 seconds left in OT.

Murillo went 3-1 in the tournament to earn his first invitation to the NCAA Div. III national championships.

After a 13-0 win in his opening match over Rhode Island College’s Daniel Murray, things got tough for Murillo. He got a takedown with 44 seconds left in overtime to beat Roger Williams’ Kyle Kaiser in the quarterfinals. In the semifinals, he beat No. 7 Peter DelGallo of Southern Maine , 2-1. Murillo earned his two points on an escape and a stalling call against DelGallo in the second period.

Shay won his first Northeast Regional title for Roger Williams at 165 pounds. He won his first two bouts and then had two close victories. In the semifinal against Adrian Gonzalez of Johnson & Wales, Shay saw Gonzalez tie the bout at 3-3 with a takedown with 1:26 remaining but Shay’s escape with 1:08 left in the bout was the difference in a 4-3 victory.

In the final, Shay outdueled Nick Remke (Marengo, Ill.) of the Coast Guard, 3-2 to win the regional title. A takedown with 1:43 remaining allowed Shay to open up a 3-1 advantage.

Coast Guard is sending a record five wrestlers to the NCAA Division III nationals with three wrestlers winning Northeast titles. Junior A.J. Aeberli (174, Warwick, N.Y.), sophomore Jon Wagner (197, Huntingdon PA) and junior Patrick Irwin (285, El Dorado, Hills, CA) all won Northeast Region championships for the first time.

All-American senior Nick Remke (165, Marengo, Ill.) placed second, freshman Paul Detwiler (184, Fleming Island, Fla.) was third for Coast Guard.

Williams’ Rossetti, the sophomore from Phillips Exeter, won his first two matches with a 12-2 win over Sean Randles of Norwich University with four takedowns and a 6-0 victory over Austin Shorey of Southern Maine.

In the semifinals against top-seeded Evan Drill of New York University, Rossetti trailed 6-2 after one period after getting taken down three times. But Rossetti rallied to cut the lead to two, 7-5, with a takedown with 1:10 remaining in the match. Drill was able to hold off Rossetti to move onto the final.

In the consolation semifinals, Rossetti pinned Coast Guard’s John Fitzpatrick in 47 seconds before beating Ryan Peters of Springfield with five takedowns in an 11-5 victory to finish third and secure a NCAA Tournament berth.

“Joey is wrestling well. He avenged a loss from first semester to punch his ticket so he’s demonstrating his gains,” Williams coach Scott Honecker said. “We have two weeks to take his peak higher as he hunts for All American honors.”

NCAA Division III Northeast Regional
At Providence
Team results – 1. Johnson & Wales 187, 2. Coast Guard 120, 3. Roger Williams 117, 4. WPI 84, 5. Castleton State 83½, 6. New York University 79, 7. Southern Maine 60, 8. Williams 58½, 9. Western New England 54½, 10. Springfield 54, 11. Wesleyan 51, 12. New England College 40, 13. Norwich University 38, 14. Trinity College 32½, 15. Rhode Island College 23, 16. Bridgewater State 22½, 17. Plymouth State 10½
Individual results
Final: Jay Albis (Johnson & Wales) dec. Zack Murillo (Wesleyan), 5-3, OT; 3. Peter Del Gallo (Southern Me.) pin Kyle Kaiser (Roger Williams) 6:27; 5. Nicholas Arborio (Western New Eng.) pin Diego Santiago (New England Col.) 4:31; 7. David Yeh (Williams) dec. Nicholas Camacho (Castleton) 4-0
Bobby Jordan (Johnson & Wales) dec. Jacob Forsman (Norwich) 20-10; 3. Ian Tolotti (Springfield) dec. Chris DeRosa (New England Col.) 7-0.; 5. MIchael Gonyea (Castleton) dec. William Crisco (NYU) 3-2; 7. Tristan Stetson (Wesleyan) dec. Ben Morton (Williams) 3-1, OT
Joseph Ferinde (Johnson & Wales) def. Evan Drill (NYU) medical forfeit; 3. Joseph Rossetti (Williams) dec. Ryan Peters (Springfield) 11-5; 5. Austin Shorey (Southern Me.) pin John (J.D.) FitzPatrick (Coast Guard) 1:21; 7. Justin DeLucia (Western New Eng.) dec. Chris Fuschetto (Roger Williams) 12-10, OT
Tyler Gazaway (Roger Williams) win by medical forfeit over Da`mani Burns (Johnson & Wales) ; 3. Max Tempel (Castleton) dec. Grant Sorensen (Trinity) 3-1, OT; 5. Kearney Gutierrez (Springfield) dec. Brendan Weir (Southern Me.) 7-1; 7. Samuel Lindblom (Rhode Island Col.) dec. Shane Ross (Wesleyan) 13-5
Tyler Marsh (WPI) dec. Ryan Monteiro (Western New Eng.) 4-3; 3. Dylan Dwyer (NYU) dec. Thomas Grippi (Johnson & Wales) 5-4; 5. Christian Gosch (Coast Guard) dec. Brendon Seyfried (Williams) 12-2; 7. Jack Kelly (Roger Williams) dec. Ryan Harty (Springfield) 8-0
Taylor Shay (Roger Williams) dec. Nick Remke (Coast Guard) 3-2; 3. Adrian Gonzalez (Johnson & Wales) dec. Jack Reilly (Trinity) 13-4; 5. James Murdoch (NYU) dec. Brendan Marion (WPI) 13-8; 7. Juan Vernaza (Southern Me.) dec. Fox Maxwell (Bridgewater St.) 8-3
Arthur (A.J.) Aeberli (Coast Guard) dec. Michael Gargano (Johnson & Wales) 4-1; 3. Malik Settles (New England Col.) dec. Tariq Grissom (Williams) 7-4; 5. Brett Leonard (Roger Williams) pin Chance LaPier (Castleton) 2:53; 7. Daniel Curran (Norwich) dec. Aarin Feliz (Springfield) 8-4
Khamri Thomas (Johnson & Wales) dec. John Boyle (Western New Eng.) 10-2; 3. Paul Detwiler (Coast Guard) dec. Dan Wensley (WPI) 7-3; 5. Ryan DeLoach (Roger Williams) win by medical forfeit over Dylan da Silva (Plymouth St.) ; 7. Michael Gallagher (Rhode Island Col.) pin Jason Hoffman (Castleton) 4:01
Jonathan Wagner (Coast Guard) win by medical forfeit over Michael DiNardo (Johnson & Wales) ; 3. Michael Curtis (WPI) dec. Jack La Corte (NYU) 5-3; 5. Simon Chee (Wesleyan) dec. Satchel Stauffer (Norwich) 6-1; 7. Mitchell LaFlam (Castleton) dec. Sebastian Dziadkiewicz (Williams) 8-0
Patrick Irwin (Coast Guard) dec. Jesse Webb (Castleton) 2-0; 3. Tommy Wrzesien (Johnson & Wales) dec. Adam Patsun (Roger Williams) 8-1; 5. William Ortman (NYU) pin Nick Day (WPI) 4:30; 7. Ryan Higgins (Bridgewater St.) pin Harrison Karp (Wesleyan) 2:48
Outstanding wrestler: Khamri Thomas (184), Johnson & Wales

2019 NCAA Division III Northeast Regional

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.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Nina Chorzepa

    February 25, 2019 at 12:51 am

    Williams College’s Joe Rossetti is a CT Native too at 141. So actually 4 state wrestlers are going to Nationals. Nice article on CT talent otherwise!

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