The Cobleskill-Richmondville wrestling team captured the Section II team championship Tuesday, Jan. 21, with a dramatic, come-from-behind victory in the C-R High School gymnasium.
The Bulldogs defeated Tamarac, 48-39, by winning the night’s final three matches.
With the victory, they have earned a spot in the state dual-meet championships, which take place Feb. 1 at Onondaga Community College.
“It’s just great for everybody in the program,” said Justin Kimball, C-R’s 10th-year head coach. “Certain individuals won’t have the opportunity to go to the individual state tournament, but as a team, now we all get to go to the dual meet championships. It’s big for all our wrestlers, whether it’s Ethan Cooper, who’s third in the state, or a first-year wrestler who’s a workout partner.”
Fittingly, it took a team effort to advance.
The Bulldogs, the No. 1 seed in the four-team Section II championships, advanced to the finals by defeating Watervliet earlier in the evening.
But in the championship matchup, they trailed No. 3-seeded Tamarac, 39-30, with three matches remaining. Ethan Cooper, at 182 pounds, kickstarted the comeback with a pin. Hunter Edwards (195) followed up with another, giving C-R a three-point lead, 42-39, before Masen Cooper (220) closed the night with the Bulldogs’ third-straight pin.
“Masen, with all the momentum going for us, he went out there and sealed the deal,” Kimball said. “It was huge for us.”
In addition to the dual meet championships, several C-R wrestlers will be seeking berths in the New York State High School Public Athletic Association Individual Championships, held Feb. 28-29 at Times Union Center in Albany. Their road to the state tournament begins Feb. 8, with the Section II individual championships.