Eden’s Alex Smythe, pictured here earlier in the season, went 4-1 at the state championships and finished third. (Photo by Jeff Barnes/Metro Source)
Alex Smythe came back in two wrestle-back matches after falling in the semifinals to take third place in Division II at 152 pounds at the NYSPHSAA state championships Feb. 22-23 at the Times Union Center in Albany.
The Eden junior won a 2-1 match over senior Tyler Spann of Adirondack (Section III) in the consolation match at 152. The first-time Section VI champion placed for a second-time in state competition.
On Day Two of the competition Saturday (Feb. 23), after Smythe was pinned by Rowdy Prior of Phoenix in the semifinal, he beat Brett Pastore of Irvington 7-0 before eking out the third-place match, which turned out to be a rematch of the quarterfinal round the day prior.
Also, the day before, Smythe opened the competition in the Round of 16, beating Luigi Miranda of Mineola in a 9-0 major decision. Smythe defeated Spann the first time around, 3-1.
Also among locals competing, Frontier junior Rocco Russo
had high hopes going into his third straight state competition but fell in the first two matches of a tough Division I 126-pound weight class.
The three-time Section VI champion and all-time career wins leader at Frontier fell to senior Chris Arraoz of Wantagh by a technical fall 16-1 in the Round of 16 before dropping an 8-3 match to senior Mike Ferra of Manhassett. Five of the top six place-finishers in the class were seniors.