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Youth Grapplers Stand Out In State Championships



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The Newtown Youth Wrestling Association (NYWA) had quite an impressive showing in state championships during February with numerous place winners.

The 10U, 12U, and Middle School championships were held in New Haven on February 27. Camron Veneziano and Noah Blair earned titles; Joey Cotter placed second; Tristan Rosenshein was third; Jake Fattibene, Max Malitsky, Quinn Garvin, and Ryan Kenney all earned fourth; and Dominic Smeraglino was sixth.

In the girls’ championship in Southington on February 16, Angelise Hernandez earned a first-place result; Riley Lovett was second; Reilly Kling and Rachel Ribeiro placed third; and Rocio Arraiz and Ellie Veneziano were fourth.

The 6U/8U championship was also held in Southington on February 16. Frankie Skura and Hunter Fowler are state champs; Ben Weintraub, Keegan Rosenschein, Maddox Wilson, Matthew Gaudenzi, and Matthew Iacuone all earned second; Christian Olteanu, Hunter Fowler, and Jacob Kennedy took third; and Alexander Carroza, Tyler San Souci, Luke Hoadley, and Micah Fehrs placed fourth.

Nick Veneziano, president of NYWA, pointed out that these results are the payoff for a long season of hard work.

“As a coach you want to be peaking in the postseason and that’s what we did,” said Tom Long, a former Newtown High standout now working with the youth grapplers in town.

Curtis Urbina, head coach of the youth program, noted at a practice on the mats in the basement of Edmond Town Hall on February 28, that it was great to see the young wrestlers back training hard for the upcoming season as well as having current Newtown High grappler Luca Manfredi join to work out with the future Newtown High competitors.

“Excellent competition all around Connecticut,” said Urbina, noting that the youth wrestlers once again rose to the occasion to experience success. “These kids were spectacular — very proud of them.”

The NYWA’s second session is five weeks long with travel competition each weekend starting in Ocean City, N.J., and concluding in State College, Penn., for the April 2 Second Chance Nationals. A highlight will be the Youth New England Championships in Hanover, Mass., on March 12 — to qualify for this each wrestler had to place top six at the co-ed open state competition on February 27.

Visit newtownyouthwrestling.com for more information.

Sports Editor Andy Hutchison can be reached at andyh@thebee.com.

Newtown Youth Wrestling Association team members, pictured with Coach Tom Long, left, and Curtis Urbina, right, took home lots of hardware in state championship competition this winter. —Bee Photo, Hutchison
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