Edgemont sophomore Tyler Aslanian won the Section 1?Small?
School?99-pound wrestling title Sunday with a 6-4 overtime?
victory over?Nanuet’s Joe Dillon.?Photo credit: Tony Pinciaro
by Tony Pinciaro
PLEASANTVILLE, N.Y. — Before Tyler Aslanian had an opportunity to break a sweat in the Section 1 Small School Wrestling Championship 99-pound final, he found himself in a four-point hole.
Nanuet?s Joe Dillon grabbed a quick lead, but Aslanian would chip away at it and eventually overtake his opponent, 6-4 in overtime to win his first sectional title Sunday at Pace University.
Aslanian was joined by his older brother, Trey, who won his third title. Edgemont finished second with 235 points over Nanuet, which had 277 points.
The 15 small-school champions earned an automatic berth to the New York State Wrestling Championships Friday and Saturday, Feb. 24 and 25, at the Times Union Center in Albany. The wrestlers who are alive for wild cards will learn Wednesday if they received one.
The youngest Aslanian brother, Kyle, placed sixth at 99 pounds. Sky Korek (106 pounds), Colin Hopkins (132), Jack McCormack (145) and Chris Kim (170) all finished second.
Croton senior David Occhipinti won his third consecutive title and was named most outstanding small-school wrestler. Ardsley?s Drew Longo also won a third sectional championship.
Somers? senior Brian Realbuto (152) made Section 1 wrestling history by winning his fifth sectional title.
?Even after I fell behind 4-0, I felt that if I wrestled my match, I felt that I would be able to come back and win,? Aslanian said.
Aslanian had a reversal in the first period then added two points in the second period to even the score. He spent the third period riding out Dillon, who he had beaten in the Jerry McGuire tournament in December.
?I felt good riding top in the third because I feel that is one of my strongest positions,? Aslanian said.
In overtime, Dillon took the first shot, but Aslanian countered it by turning it into a takedown with 25 seconds remaining in sudden-victory overtime.
?When he lifted me up, I felt that I could score because I had been in that situation numerous times before on the mat and in my head,? Aslanian said. ?It feels great to win. I came in wanting to win a sectional title and I want to be a state champ, hopefully.?