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Monroe County Tournament
Underdog turns into champ Rosso of Greece Olympia earns title at Monroe County Championships
Rochester Democrat and Chronicle
January 27, 2008
NYS Qualifier
Welcome mats rolled out for state meet
Rochester Democrat and Chronicle
March 08, 2008
Monroe County Wrestling Championships:
Underdog turns into champ Rosso of Greece Olympia earns title at Monroe County Championships
James Johnson, Staff Writer

Jen Rynda staff photographer
Penfield's James Montante, left, wrestles Greece Olympia's Rocco Rosso in the varsity 96-pound division during the Monroe County Championships on Saturday at Webster Schroeder.
(January 27, 2008) — WEBSTER — While Rocco Rosso was not at the bottom of Monroe County's pool of 96-pound wrestlers last season, he was no one's favorite to win the league tournament either.

"I got beat a lot," said Rosso, who finished with a sub-.500 record last winter. "I was an underdog."

Rosso, a senior at Greece Olympia, became a league champion this weekend. A 4-3 win over Penfield sophomore James Montante gave Rosso the 96-pound title during the Monroe County Championships Saturday at Webster Schroeder.

"It feels great. I'm happy to win this," said Rosso. "I hope I can go to states. I only have one year to get it done."

Rosso struggled to make weight during his first two varsity seasons, one of which was spent at Dansville. He was often not heavy enough.

"My sophomore year I had to carry around milk jugs full of water and wear as many clothes as I could at weigh-ins," Rosso said. "My bench press went up from 135 to 180 last offseason. That put on 10 to 15 pounds."

Rosso (34-2) has won his last 29 matches, after he suffered both of his losses during the first two weeks of the season.
Jen Rynda staff photographer
Webster Thomas' Pat Maloney, left, takes on Brockport's Christian Boley in the varsity 189-pound division on Saturday.
Spencerport does not seem to lose as a team.

The Rangers, ranked 15th nationally by Wrestling International Newsmagazine, scored 243 points to make the race for second place the only real competition in team scoring. Fairport finished 65.5 behind Spencerport in second with 177.5, followed by Brockport at 135.5 and Penfield at 134.5.

A total of four Spencerport wrestlers won their weight class, including senior 160-pounder Bryan Bourne, who became a three-time league champion, and junior Paul Glover at 215.

Glover (30-0) edged Webster Thomas senior Robert Eskander, 3-2, in a matchup of undefeated heavyweights. Eskander (23-1), a state runner-up in 2007, is a two-time champion at the Eastern States Wrestling Classic Championships.

"I've known since last year that I would end up wrestling him," said Glover after he scored a takedown in the first period and tacked on an escape. "This is my biggest win so far.

"He's a well-rounded athlete who is coached very well."

Glover won in what might have been the top final.

Or maybe that was the 119 final between Greece Athena's Alex Marianetti and Brighton's Zack Ellis, two friends who train in the offseason together and have a history on the mat.

Most of that history has been in favor of Ellis. Marianetti however, was the winner Saturday by a score of 5-2. Takedowns in the first two periods sent Marianetti out to a 4-1 lead.

"It's nice to be able to redeem myself a little bit," said Marianetti, whose only loss this season came at the hands of Ellis. "I've never been able to win when it mattered, in-season."

Pittsford sophomore 103-pounder C.J. Howard, Bourne, Glover, along with Brockport teammates John-Martin Cannon at 152 and Christian Boley at 189, were among the wrestlers who remained undefeated this season.

"Hopefully, I make it to states," said Howard after his record went to 35-0. "I have a pretty good shot.

"I'm ranked up there in the state and I worked pretty hard in the offseason, three sessions everyday for three weeks."

Gates Chili sophomore Chester Demanchick knew little about Spencerport's Justin Melia, but decided he would "just put a battle" in the 112 final. Demanchick won that battle 11-2.

Rush-Henrietta senior Andrew Lembaris (22-9) shook up the 135 bracket when he knocked out No. 1 seed Paul Morabito from Spencerport, 6-1 in the first round. Lembaris made it to the final, where he lost 3-2 to Olympia's Josh Veltre.

"I never count him out," said R-H coach Mickey Marlowe of Lembaris.
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