The Herricks Highlanders began their 2019-2020 wrestling season with an impressive 43-38 win against the Island Trees Bulldogs. The Herricks Highlanders are coached by Eric Goldberg, Thomas LaMaida and Robert Bianco.
The Highlanders had six decisive pins; 8th grader Joseph Manfredi (99), freshman Michael Manfredi (106) in his first varsity match, junior Kumel Arif (113), freshman Joseph Mattei (138) and senior Co-Captain Daniel Mattei (182). Junior Marcus Osieczkowski (145), in an exciting match pinned Vinny Butrico to secure the team win. Senior Matt Polo (220) had a thrilling overtime win while senior Co-Captain Cole LaRock (152) won by major decision. Also wrestling varsity were junior Daniel Dunn (120), senior Sal Puliafico (126), sophomore Aaron Cho (132), senior Ruiz Kamaruszaman (160), juniors Ali Shahid (170) and Kelsey Alvarado (195), and senior Nate Dowd (285).
In second man matches, all Highlander grapplers wrestled well, which included Ricky DeVito (126), Ploy Tipmanee (126), Daniel Fetahi (132), Nigel Oomner (132), Marco Delellis (170), Georgious Tsoumpariotis (170), Emeril Peralta (182), Prithvi Verma (195), and Cooper LaRock (195).
Herricks hosted it’s 48th Herricks Invitational on Saturday, December 1, 2019. It was a great day of wrestling for all the teams that entered which included Hauppauge, Hempstead, White Plains-Sec 1, Southampton, Roosevelt, Valley Stream Central and Lawrence.
The Highlanders had a successful day. Joe Manfredi finishing first at 99 lbs went 5-0 with two pins and a tech fall. He beat an all-county Suffolk/Hauppauge wrestler in the finals. Kumel Arif, who has shown great progress and is now ranked 6th in Nassau County, was champ at 106 lbs. At 152, Cole LaRock (Capt) went 5-0 with 4 pins, and Daniel Mattei (Capt) at 182 lbs won all of his 5 matches with 3 pins.
Marcus Osieczkowski took second, going 3-1 with 3 pins in a tough weight class (145 lbs) losing to #1 ranked Suffolk County wrestler from Hauppauge in the finals.
At 126, Sal Puliafico (Capt) placed third in a very tough weight class with 12 participants which included an all-state wrestler from Hauppauge.
Joe Mattei at 132 took second, losing to a Suffolk all-county opponent from Hauppauge in the finals.
Matt Polo placed third at 220 lbs, picking up some quality points along the way, beating an all-conference wrestler from Hempstead.
On the junior varsity side, Cooper LaRock went 4-0 and placed 1st at 195 lbs, while at 126 lbs Ricky Devito took second and Ploy Tipmanee placed third.
On December 4, 2019, the Herricks Highlanders (2-0) won their second match the season against the Glen Cove Knights 52-28. The Highlanders had decisive winning pins from Joe Manfredi (99), Michael Manfredi (113), Aaron Cho (126), Joseph Mattei (138), and Captain Cole LaRock (152). Ali Shahid (170) won by tech fall and Captain Daniel Mattei (182) won by forfeit. Captain Sal Puliafico (132) and Marcus Osieczkowski (145) won by major decision while Ruiz Kamaruszaman (160) won by decision.
Hard fought battles but coming up short included Kumel Arif (106), John Pappas (120), Kelsey Alvarado (195), Matt Polo (220) and Nate Dowd (285).
The Herricks Highlanders visited the MacArthur Generals on December 18, 2019. Coaches Goldberg, LaMaida and Bianco put forth a competitive Highlander line-up, but the Nassau County powerhouse Generals were too strong and Herricks lost 65-18. The Herricks grapplers came away with three victories: Andrew Barba at 99 lbs receiving a forfeit, Kumel Arif pinning his opponent at 106 lbs and Joseph Mattei winning by pin at 132 lbs against a ranked General at the time.
All the Herricks wrestlers performed valiantly against a team that is ranked in the top ten in the state. Danny Dunn (113), John Pappas (120), Sal Puliafico (126), Marcus Osieczkowski (145), Ruiz Kamaruszaman (160), Daniel Mattei (182), Matt Polo (220) and Nate Dowd (285), all gave their best, but lost.
On the junior varsity side, winners included Georgious Tsoumpariotis (160 lbs), Franco Dimilta (170 lbs), Brian Kim (170 lbs) and Cooper LaRock (182 lbs) with a come from behind pin after being down 5-0 in the first period. Wrestlers who fought hard but came up short were: Nigel Oomner (126 lbs), Danny Fetahi (132 lbs), Avinash Chopra (160 lbs), Prithvi Verma (195 lbs), Dan An (220 lbs), Amr Ibrahim (285 lbs), Ploy Tipmanee (126 lbs), Marco De Lellis (170 lbs), and Nick Diaz (182 lbs).
On Friday, Dec. 20, 2019, the Herricks Highlanders (overall 2-1, conf 0-1) won an exciting conference match against East Meadow, 34-31. Everybody contributed to the win. Captain Sal Puliafico started the Herricks scoring with a major decision at 126 lbs. Marcus Osieczkowski won a hard fought battle by decision at 145 lbs. Captain Daniel Mattei had the first Herricks pin of the evening at 195 lbs while senior Matt Polo quickly answered with another pin at 220 lbs. Joseph Manfredi earned a decisive pin at 99 lbs along with brother Michael Manfredi at 106 lbs. Kumel Arif won the final match of the evening by decision securing the win for the Highlanders.
Aaron Cho (120), Kailen McCauley (132), Joseph Mattei (138), Captain Cole LaRock (152), Ruiz Kamaruszaman (160), Ali Shahid (170), Cooper LaRock (182), and Nate Dowd (220) also wrestled well but came up short.
Valley Stream North Tournament
Herricks participated in the Valley Stream North Tournament on Saturday, December 21, 2019. The teams included VS North, VS Central, Seaford, Lawrence, Manhasset, Sewanhaka District West, Wheatley, Oyster Bay, Plainedge, M.L. King-PSAL, Baruch-PSAL, and Bay Shore. As always, the competition was tough. Herricks had a fantastic showing and won the tournament with eleven place winners:
Joseph Manfredi 1st at 99 lbs.
Kumel Arif 1st and Michael Manfredi 2nd at 106 lbs.
Captain Sal Puliafico 2nd at 126 lbs.
Joseph Mattei 2nd at 132 lbs.
Marcus Osieczkowski 2nd at 145lbs.
Captain Cole LaRock 2nd at 152lbs.
Ruiz Kamaruszaman 2nd and Ali Shahid 3rd at 160lbs.
Captain Daniel Mattei 3rd at 182 lbs.
Patchogue Medford Tournament
On December 28, 2019, the Herricks Highlanders travelled east and closed the wrestling calendar year at the Patchogue-Medford Tournament. Teams included powerhouses from Suffolk, Patchogue-Medford, John Glenn, Bay Shore, Miller Place, Smithtown East, and Riverhead. The Herricks Highlanders had a great showing. Two Highlanders made it to the championship finals: Joseph Manfredi (99) won his weight class placing first in a hard fought battle winning 2-1 and Joseph Mattei (126) placing second after losing his championship match. Other Herricks place winners were as follows:
Kumel Arif 4th, Danny Dunn 5th, Michael Manfredi 7th at 106 lbs.
Captain Sal Puliafico 7th at 126 lbs.
Aaron Cho 4th and Kailen McCauley 8th at 132 lbs.
Marcus Osieczkowski 5th at 145lbs.
Ruiz Kamaruszaman 6th at 160lbs.
Captain Daniel Mattei 5th at 170 lbs.
Matt Polo 5th at 220 lbs.
Wrestlers who participated but did not place: John Pappas (120), Kevin Chan (138), Captain Cole LaRock (152), Krish Patel (182), and Nate Dowd (220).
Submitted by Susan Mattei