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Jose Vasquez Wins Windsor Tournament Crown to Pace Blue Devils

Junior Jose Vasquez wrestled his way through the tough Windsor tournament, winning the 96 lb. crown to lead to the Blue Devil mat squad to a fifth place finish out of 17 teams in the two day competition held outside of Binghamton.  Vasquez was one of eight Huntington matmen to finish in the top six of their weight classes.

Last year the Blue Devils slumped to ninth in the Windsor standings with just 80 points.  It was their lowest finish ever in 17 trips to the state’s oldest wrestling tournament, which this year celebrated its 50th anniversary.  That was then, this is now.  “We had a solid showing against some very strong competition,” Huntington assistant coach Travis Smith said.  “Everyone wrestled hard.”

Huntington totaled 138.5 points, trailing only Chenango Forks (212.5), Waverly (203.5), Bainbridge-Guilford/Afton (175) and Saratoga Springs (151).  The Blue Devils have won the team championship eight times since their first trip in December 1989 and finished second in four other appearances.

Vasquez advanced to the finals with a hard fought decision over Chenango Forks’ Jordan Dyer, 16-8.  He easily dismantled A.J. Rue of Saratoga Springs to grab the coveted title, 14-4.  “Jose did a super job against some very good wrestlers,” Huntington head coach Lou Giani said.

Huntington senior Allan Hendrickson had to settle for second place at 171 lbs. after he was edged in an exciting bout by Waverly’s Colin McDonald, 6-4.  Hendrickson had earlier moved past Harpursville’s Todd Terpstra in the semifinals, 12-2.

Senior Stephan Riley grabbed third place at 112 lbs. after shutting out Darren Terpstra of BGA, 8-0.  Rookie Nigel McNeil fell in the 103 lb. consolation to Travis Barnett of Chenango Forks, 8-3, to finish fourth.  Junior Francisco Pereira also finished fourth at 119 lbs. after losing to Saratoga Springs’ Eddie Davis in the consolation round, 6-4.  Junior Dashaun Thomas was another fourth place finisher, losing his final bout, 8-2 to Ithaca’s Nick Sacco.

Huntington’s Omar Santiago (6th – 125 lbs.) and Jayson Santiago (5th – 152) also earned top six place finishes.  The Blue Devils now turn their attention to the start of the league dual meet season, hosting Comsewogue in Giani Gym this Friday (Jan. 5) at 5 p.m. before traveling on Saturday to Suffern High School for the tough Kohl tournament.

“We aren’t where we want to be yet, but we’re working on it,” Giani said.