North grapplers roll past South


The Valley Stream North Spartans jumped out to a strong start in their dual wrestling meet against their cross-town rivals and never looked back to earn bragging rights.

Mahmoud Telab, Evan Burke, Jason Valentin and Yianni Daniil all recorded pins and Valley Stream North took advantage of several forfeits to steamroll past Valley Stream South 59-15 on Jan. 4.

Freshman Michael Munson and Aladen Gulmohamad earned decision victories and junior Anthony Anderson recorded a technical fall for the Spartans, who won their second dual match in six tries and first since topping Lawrence on Dec. 19. The Falcons dropped to 2-7 in such matches.

“I finally got the kids to be more aggressive,” VSN coach Tom Maddock said. “It’s been something I’ve been emphasizing all year, that we need to be more aggressive. Some guys I was having trouble with were finally more aggressive.”

Tai Spigner and Nick Schapira were the only South grapplers to pick up points in competitive matches. Spigner needed just 29 seconds to pin North’s Angelo Morales in their 170-pound bout and Schapira outlasted Joseph Munson at 182 pounds.

Falcons coach Mike Buonagurio lamented that his team loses 24 points in each dual match due to a lack of wrestlers in the bottom and top two weight classes, but was still hoping that the other matches would go the distance.

“I pretty much expected the outcome the way it ended up,” he said. “They pretty much dominated us in those other weight classes. I was expecting my kids to give up the three rather than the six points.”

North picked up the first 12 points on forfeits in the 99 and 106 weight classes before Michael Munson pushed the advantage to 15-0 with his 9-2 decision win over junior Christian Rengifo in their 113-pound bout. Telab (120) pinned senior Timmy Parnell before Anderson’s dominate 16-0 win over senior Justin Lahoz in the 126-pound match that made the score 26-0.

Maddock was especially impressed with Michael Munson’s performance since he was able to beat a wrestler that he felt had “twice the strength.”

“The kid was very, very strong that he went against,” he said. “I was really happy that he outwrestled the kid and did a nice job. If you ever saw this kid, Mike does not have much muscle of his own.”

Burke (132) and Valentin (138) pinned Anthony Bravo and Jaeger Hessing, respectively, and Gulmohamad outlasted senior Marcus Reed 8-5 to make it 41-0.

South finally got on the board with a forfeit win at 152. Rich Gonzalez (160) led early in his match with Daniil before being pinned. Spigner and Schapira’s pins cut the deficit further before North gained forfeit wins in the 220 and 285-pound classes.

Spigner and Schapira both continued their strong seasons with respectable outings the following day during the Rocky Gilmore Tournament at East Islip by finishing fourth and sixth, respectively. Buonagurio said he expects both to qualify for the county tournament.