Bergen Catholic capped off an incredible team performance just before New Years as the Crusaders claimed their 16th Bergen County Wrestling Championship in program history along with four individual championships.
Nick Suriano (106 lbs), Tyler Casamenti (113 lbs), Laurien Anghelina (138 lbs) and Johnny Sebastian (182 lbs) each claimed their individual championships by decisions of 2-1, 3-2, 10-3 respectively and a 3:57 pin.
BC sent seven wrestlers into the championship round with JP Ascolese, Christian Jenco and Carmine Goldsack coming in short; Troy Schaafsma and Kevin Mulligan finished third; Dan DiLorenzo was fifth and Matt Rose seventh.
River Dell's Nick Baranello (220) and Tyler Kallensee (160) both worked their way though to the final round and ran into eventual champions Zack Chakonis (Don Bosco) and four-time title winner Nick Gravina (Northern Highlands).
Baranello recorded three pins before Chakonis walked away with a 7-5 victory decision. Kallensee had a pin and two decisions in the earlier rounds but was thrown to the mat and pinned in 2:51 by Gravina.
Dave Nichiro, DJ Tirelli, Danny Lynch and Cenzo Cariddi all placed third.
The Lady Hawks (8-1) after winning the Soaring Eagle Holiday Festival, defeating Union City 45-13 in the semifinals and Union 46-39 in the finals were able to celebrate again this week after handing head coach Lou Wejnert his 400th career victory, a 60-22 victory over Fort Lee. The 18-year River Dell coaching veteran now has a 400-87 career record and has won at least 20 games in 14 of 17 seasons.
The Golden Hawks, who defeated Bergenfield 37-35 in the Bergen Holiday Festival semifinals fell to three-year champion Dwight Englewood 54-33. The Hawks later fell to Fort Lee, 64-45 with CJ Doornheim netting a team high 18 points.
Bergen Catholic returned from the Cactus Jam in Arizona in high spirits after come from behind wins over Eagle River (Alaska) 51-46 and Lathrop High School (Alaska) 66-42 utilizing a spread out offense between 12 different athletes. BC returned to North Jersey and the Big North United Division to face Don Bosco and ran into trouble between handing the ball over 18 times and the Ironman's junior guard Paul Jorgensen's 27 game points. Bosco would go on to win 61-47.
The Hawks downed Morris Hills 7-0 in the Codey Holiday Classic semifinals and then fell to Lakeland 6-4 in the finals. Netting tallies during the Holiday Classic were Jason Conroy, Jack Schaefer and Brett Connon (2 each), Brendan O'Sullivan, Ben Shapiro, Kyle Marshall, Jacob Buchner and Rich Myers. Connor O'Reilly stopped 31 saves in two games.
Bergen Catholic struggled in the Pepsi Holiday Classic falling to Chatham 4-0 and St. Joseph (Metuchen) 4-1 with Tucker James netting the lone goal. Goalies Peter Negron and Gennaro Anzevino stopped 24 shots each from the Cougars and Falcons respectively.
River Dell split its meet with Old Tappan as the boys fell 110-60 behind Liam Oberlander (50 Free, 100 Free) as the lone Golden Hawk to outpace the competition for a first place finish.
The girls team downed the Lady Knights 102-68 as Gabi Denicola (200 IM, 100 Fly), Maddy Toohey (100 Free), the 200 free relay (Denicola, Emma Scholesd, Lienne Barrise, Toohey) and Julia Lombardi (100 breast stroke) all flew through the water.
At the first Garfield High Jump Shot Put Meet, Brandon Jurasin took the high jump with a 6-0 leap; Austin Berninger threw a 52-6 ½ in the shot put for third; and Laura Oh placed fifth in the girls shot put with a 34-7 ½.