As usual, those who attended the annual late season varsity dual between the rival Averill Park and Columbia Wrestling teams got their money’s worth. It had it all: lead changes, controversy and, of course, top notch wrestling. And just like last year’s classic contest between the schools, and for the third time in five years, one match was the margin of victory.
The night began with Columbia breaking out to a fast 16-0 lead. However, Averill Park team Captains Sean Malenfant and Mason Lumbra, as well as senior Alex Cooper, would not let AP go down without a fight, scoring three straight pins and giving the Warriors an 18-16 lead. Columbia would then counter by winning 3 of 4 matches (Chad Rist won his match for AP) to give The Blue Devils a 34-21 advantage.
It was then time for Averill Park’s lightweights to shine. Coming off a tough dual for them versus Burnt Hills, 7th Grader Jacob Hanlon, freshman Colin Brunelle and old timer Nathan Fischer rolled out three straight victories to give Averill Park a slim 36-34 lead. Unfortunately, for Averill Park it was not to be on this night. Columbia finished strong and in a reversal of last year’s comeback Averill Park victory, took the win 42-36.
Good job by both teams and good luck to all wrestlers as next are the end of season tournaments.