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Fairfield Warde outlasts Xavier to win Guilford Invitational; Killingly grabs Lancer Invitational

Fairfield Warde beat Xavier to win the Guilford Invitational on Saturday. (Photo courtesy Jason Shaughnessy)

With six individual champions and seven finalists, Fairfield Warde outlasted Xavier, 269½ to 220½ to capture the Guilford Invitational for the third time in the last five years. The event was cancelled a year ago due to the COVID-19 pandemic and West Springfield won it in 2020.

Warde’s Ben Zuckerman (120) beat Xavier’s Max Morse in the finals, 2-0 while Jeremy Brault (145) outlasted Xaviver’s Matt Ferrucci, 5-3 in the finals. Warde’s Will Ebert (170) was named outstanding wrestler.

Xavier did have three wrestlers competing at the Beast of the East tournament in Newark, Delaware.

At the Beast of the East, Danbury’s Kai O’Dell won four bouts at 138 pounds including three straight in the consolation bracket. Deyton Soto (106) had multiple wins for the Hatters (2-2) while Anthony Hackett (113), Logan Kovacs (145), Liam Byrne (160) and Nuh Addinoski (285) each earned a victory.

Xavier had three wrestlers in the tournament with Raeqwon Shabazz (106) going 4-2 and falling one win shy of earning a medal. Shabazz won three straight in the consolation round with two pins and a 5-3 victory in overtime. Dylan Levesque (138) and Colin Loria (152) each went 1-2 in the tournament.

Saturday, Dec. 18 results and boxscores

Killingly had four individual champions and five finalists slip past Staples, 145-139 and win the 38th annual Lancer Invitational in Waterford for the first time. Three Rhode Island squads finished in the top five led by North Providence, who finished third.

Brady Zadora (113), Kaden Ware (132), Jack Richardson (152), Soren Rief (195) each won individual titles for Killingly. A week earlier, Rief was a starting fullback on the Killingly High football team that won the Class M championship. With two pins and a 7-4 win over Waterford’s Mason Concascia in the finals, Richardson was named the outstanding wrestler.

Saturday, Dec. 18 results and boxscores

Foran-Milford won the 32nd annual C.J. McCormack Invitational in Berlin for the first time with a 238 to 193 ½ win over Avon. Berlin was third. Eliot Poffenberger finished first for Foran at 195 pounds while Foran put six wrestlers in the finals.

Avon had its best showing in the tournament since winning it in 2006. The Falcons were led by Isaiah Adams, who was first at 113 and Jonah Weber, who was first at 138 pounds.

Bristol Eastern’s Ella Nichols won the tournament at 152 pounds with a pin, a 5-0 win in the semifinals and a 4-0 win over Farmington’s Chris Choi in the finals. Nichols is ranked No. 5 in the country in the latest girls high school rankings.

Saturday, Dec. 18 results and boxscores

Branford won the Ludlowe Invitational for the second straight year with a six-point win over Norwalk, 176-170. The Hornets also won in 2020 and the tournament wasn’t held in 2021. Patrick Zdunek won for Branford at 160 pounds with a pin in 17 seconds in the final. Stamford’s Samantha Yap won the tournament at 106 pounds with three pins.

With six individual champions, East Hartford won the Skip Ardan Invitational tournament at Manchester High. Trumbull finished second.

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 40 years. He was inducted into the New England High School Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2018.

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