Brick Memorial coach Mike Denver said he and his coaching staff were considering making moves going into Wednesday night’s NJSIAA Central Group IV semifinal match against Jackson Memorial.
But, in the end, Denver and his assistants thought the best move would be not to make any.
“We didn’t want to overthink it,” Denver said.
The Mustangs had defeated the Jaguars by 14 points and won nine bouts in a regular season match on Jan. 15. History repeated itself as Brick Memorial once again won nine bouts and their 32-18 win equaled the same margin as their 33-19 win four weeks ago.
Brick Memorial (15-2), the defending Group IV state champion and the two-time defending Central IV champion, will attempt to win its 15th sectional championship at No. 1 seed Howell tentatively on Friday night.
There were changes in the Brick Memorial lineup from Jan. 15 because of the additions of Joe Ghione (132/138) and Cliff Ruggerio (152/160). They did not wrestle in the first match because of injuries.
“We thought our lineup was good enough without making moves,” Denver said.
Jackson Memorial made an interesting move in the lower weights. It had Fred Terranova weigh down to 106 and Mike Spino up to 113.
With that move, Jackson Memorial wanted to give itself a chance to sweep both those weights by having Terranova beat freshman Giovanni Ghione, and Spino beat Luke Vescovi at 113.
“We had heard rumors they were going to do that,” Denver said.
Terranova beat Ghione, 9-3, However, for the move to pay off for the Jaguars, Spino had to beat Vescovi.
“When they weighed Spino up, we thought that was pretty much a tossup bout,” Denver said.
Vescovi spoiled the move with a reversal with 14.5 seconds left for a 4-2 win that gave Brick Memorial a 17-15 and in the driver’s seat, considering it was going to end the match with Ghione at 138 and unbeaten Alec Donovan at 145.
Otherwise, not much changed from the first meeting. Brick Memorial again won all the bouts from 120-138. 15. It also got a key 4-2 win from freshman heavyweight Nick Rivera over Broderick Graham on a takedown with seven seconds left. Rivera had beaten Graham in double overtime in the first meeting.
Jackson Memorial won some of the same bouts from the first time, highlighted by Ken Bradley’s 7-6 win over Tyler Poling at 220.
“It was pretty much the same match,” Denver said.