Pearl River senior Brendan Bourke stepped onto the mat for his 170-pound match against Tappan Zee's Stanley Berenson Thursday knowing a victory would give his team the dual meet win over the Dutchmen.
Bourke took control of the match early and held on for an 11-6 victory, giving Pearl River a 40-39 win in the dual meet.
"I knew I had to get points," Bourke said. "I knew I had to get the win. I went out there and wrestled my hardest and we won. When time is running out and you're up by a lot, you know you completed the job you were setn out to do, so it's a good feeling."
"It shows heart," teammate Nick Simeti said. "He's got a hurt shoulder. For him to win, that's awesome."
Shaun Carroll kept the Pirates' hopes alive in the 160-pound match by pinning Justn Schaller.
"We had to have that one," Pearl River Head Coach Grier Yorks said. "One of them had to pin and one had to win."
The Pirates had to rally from a 24-0 deficit because the match started in the upper weights, the strength of the Tappan Zee lineup. Kurt Romano (182), Billy Madigan (195) and John Hartnett (220) pinned their opponents and Mike Manni (285) won by forfeit.
"They are awesome in the upper weights," Yorks said. "We were giving away a lot of points. I thought maybe Chris Flynn had a chance at 182, but he got caught. Going down 24 was a little more than I was hoping for, but I knew we would get them back later. I knew it was going to be close. We got just enough."
Tappan Zee Coach Peter Dene pointed to that match and Ryan Mullahy's pin of Tim De La Rosa at 145 and Shaun Carroll's pin of Justin Schaller at 160 as key turning points in Pearl River's favor.
"Those swing matches killed us," Dene said.
Pearl River got back into the match with a tech fall by Sean McGarvey at 99, James Kelly's victory by forfeit at 106 and a pin by Jake Kurzhals at 113. Yorks pushed Kelly up to 106 so McGarvey could wrestle at 99.
John Muldoon continued his strong season with a technical fall over Sergei Meyer at 125 and Simeti won a key decision over Carlos Aponte at 132.
"I wanted to pin him," Simeti said. "I didn't want to give up any points. We knew it was going to be a close match, but if everyone did their jobs, we could win."
Junior Rob Gullo lost his match to Desmond Djekovic at 152, 7-1, but only falling by decision was a key turning point. Djekovic took Gullo down hard early in the match for a takedown and nearly pinned him. Gullo was injured, but managed to hang on to the end of the match.
Dene said he thought Gullo might have a concussion and was surprised he was able to continue.
"I was shocked Gullo wrestled, but I respect his toughness," Dene said. "Because of that, they won the match. That was the difference. If we get six there, it's iced, but Des has to get a major (decision there)."
Djekovic cut Gullo lose for a one-point escape with 20 seconds left, but he couldn't get the takedown of Gullo he needed for the major decision.
Both coaches agreed the match showed the overal improvement and parity in Rockland County wrestling.
"To see teams we use dto completely roll over and smash come up and do better is great," Dene said. "It's not because we are down. We didn't lose beause we're having a bad year. We lost because they're doing the right thing over there."
Pearl River 40, Tappan Zee 39
- 99 – Sean McGarvey (PR) tech. Fall Pat Burns, 18-2
- 106 – James Kelly (PR) won by forfeit
- 113 – Jake Kurzhals (PR) pin Jason Girolami
- 120 – Luke Jara (TZ) pin Brayden Ilie, 2:40
- 126 – John Muldoon (PR) Tech Fall Sergei Meyer, 17-2
- 132 – Nick Simeti (PR) dec. Carlos Aponte, 5-0
- 138 – Noah Hovde (TZ) pin Joe McDonagh, 1:59
- 145 – Ryan Mullahy (PR) pin Tim de La Rosa, 5:17
- 152 – Desmon Djekovic (TZ) dec. Rob Gullo, 7-1
- 160 – Shaun Carroll (PR) pin Justin Schaller
- 170 – Brandon Bourke (PR) dec. Stanley Berenson, 11-6
- 182 – Kurt Romano (TZ) pin Chris Flynn, 2:53
- 195 – Billy Madigan (TZ) pin Ryan Kondracki, 3:40
- 220 – John Hartnett (TZ) pin David Avery, 2:30
- 285 – Mike Manni (TZ) won by forfeit