Nick Lazarony makes Batavia wrestling history
Nick Lazarony did something that hasn't been done for Batavia in a very long time.
The 112-pound grappler won an individual title at the Monroe County League Championships, getting the first county title for the school in 23 years.
Lazarony was knocked out of the tournament early as a freshman and sophomore, then was injured last year. Finally, as a senior he made Batavia history.
Joe Amico and Kelly Boyle won Monroe County League titles back in 1986.
Lazarony pinned Chris Kauffman of Greece Olympia in 1:18 in the opening round Friday, then dropped Churchville's Jason Dey in the second round in 1:42.
He beat Pittsford's Brady Bason with a 5-1 decision in the semifinals.
He won the title with a win over Rush-Henrietta's John Northrup 8-2 in the finals.
"Breaking a 23-year old steak is pretty good," coach Rick Stewart said. "He's put in a lot of hard work and deserves this."
Lazarony wasn't the only Batavia wrestler to have a good Monroe County League tourney.
That is evident as Batavia had its best-ever finish in the tournament - where they are going up against the biggest schools in Section 5 - taking fifth. The teams ahead of them were all state ranked teams.
Spencerport won the tournament, followed by Penfield, Fairport and Hilton. A winner, three second place finishers and a third was good enough for fifth.
"Those four teams ahead of us are ranked high in the state in Division I," Stewart said. "We did well, putting four in the finals is an accomplishment."
It is the first time the Blue Devils have ever placed four wrestlers in the finals.
Ryan Darch's undefeated season at 160 pounds came to an end in the finals. He had two pins and a major decision, pushing his season record to 33-0 before matching up with Hilton's John Velieri in the finals. The match was tied at 1 before Darch made an aggressive move in the second period. He wound up losing a 7-1 decision, but placed second.
Troy Ireland also had two pins and a decision in getting to the finals at 171 pounds, where he was matched up with Spencerport's Nick Baxter. Baxter won a hard fought 10-6 decision.
Josh Mase was on fire at 103 pounds. He had three straight pins in getting to the finals. But, he was pinned in the finals in just :59 seconds by Penfield's Brandon Ling.
Anthony D'Aurizio had a major decision and a decision to make the semifinals, but lost to Brockport's Christian Boley - the eventual champion - 7-1.
But he made up for the loss in the consolation round, beating Greece Olympia's Zack Shotwell 2-0 for a third place finish.
The Blue Devils have one match and a tournament left before sectionals.
"It lets the kids know they can wrestle with the best in the Section 5 and the state," Stewart said. "This is one of the toughest tournaments in the state. The kids are excited for sectionals and states. They have big goals."
(Thanks to Tony D'Aurizio for the photos)