County titles for Long Beach's Sibomana-Rodriguez and Andreula


Long Beach produced a pair of repeat champions and two other finalists on the way to finishing runner-up to Plainedge at the Nassau County Division 1 wrestling tournament last Sunday at Hofstra University’s Mack Sports Complex.

Sophomore Dunia Sibomana-Rodriguez added another chapter to his incredible life story with a third consecutive title, while Ethan Andreula, a year after becoming the first seventh-grader to ever win a Nassau D1 crown, earned the top spot on the podium once again.

“I couldn’t be happier with how our kids wrestled,” Long Beach coach Ray Adams said. “Plainedge had a little too much firepower. They have the best team in the state.”

Sibomana-Rodriguez, Andreula, senior Gregory Milone and junior Gregory Walpole will represent the Marines at the New York State championships in Albany Feb. 23-24. Sibomana-Rodriguez, a native of the Congo in Central Africa who in 2014 survived a horrific chimpanzee attack that claimed the lives of two family members, won a state title two seasons ago as an eighth-grader and placed third last winter.

“It feels amazing,” Sibomana-Rodriguez said after defeating Manhasset sophomore Will Russell, 6-3, in Sunday’s 108-pound county title match. “I put in a lot of work and it’s great to see it pay off. Will’s a tough opponent. He’s been one of the top guys in the weight class all season.”

Sibomana-Rodriguez recorded three pins and one tech fall in the two-day event and takes a record of 39-2 to Albany. Both of his losses this season came against topnotch opponents in higher weight classes.

“I’m focused on the big picture,” he said. “I’m looking forward to competing for the state title and will try my best. It’s great to have three teammates going there with me.”

Andreula placed seventh at the state tournament last February, and Adams is confident he’ll use the experience to his advantage and land a higher spot on the All-State podium.

“Our guys face the toughest competition there is and Ethan is one of those kids,” Adams said of Andreula, who grinded out a 3-2 decision over MacArthur’s Vincent Orandello in the 101-pound county final. “His positioning throughout the match was paramount.”

Andreula has a record of 35-2. Like Sibomana-Rodriguez and Walpole, he was the No. 1 seed in Nassau. Andreula won by major decision, tech fall and pin leading up to the title match.

Milone (160 pounds) and Walpole (116) fell just short in their quests for a county championship but are headed to states and will look to make a splash in Albany.

Milone, seeded third, recorded three straight pins last Saturday and then won a thrilling semifinal against second-seeded Joe Keesee of Mineola on Sunday morning, 8-6. Milone has a record of 37-8.

Walpole, who had four pins over the weekend, was edged by Hewlett’s Carlos Salazar in the finals, 5-4. Walpole has 33 wins on the campaign.

In addition to the four state qualifiers, Long Beach had two other All-County finishes. Sophomore Brody Franklin went 4-1 and took third at 124, and senior Matan Greenfield (170) finished sixth with four victories in seven matches.

“Matan missed some time with injuries but saved his best for last,” Adams said. “He won in overtime to be All-County. To go out that way, it’s great.”