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Feb 9, 2018 2:15 PMPublication: The East Hampton Press & The Southampton Press

Medina, Espinosa Earn All-County Honors At Suffolk County Division II Championships

Jackson Perez and Willy Kraus were the highest seeded Baymen at this weekend's Suffolk County Division II Championships. DREW BUDD
Feb 13, 2018 12:47 PM

Everything went as expected for the Southampton wrestling team at the Suffolk County Division II Championships at Suffolk County Community College in Brentwood this past weekend.

Anthony Medina, seeded third in the 195-pound weight class, placed third, and Derek Espinosa, seeded fourth at 182 pounds, placed fourth. They were the only two Mariner wrestlers to place.

Medina, a junior, lost his first-round match to Bayport/Blue Point sophomore Eddie Negron, 19-12, but won his three wrestleback matches, including the consolation finals, where he pinned Shoreham/Wading River freshman Dylan Blanco in 1:32. Southampton head coach Lester Ware said he believed that if first-round nerves weren’t a factor, Medina could have reached the finals and possibly won the county title. Mount Sinai senior Jake Croston pinned Port Jefferson junior Harry Cona in 39 seconds to win the title.

Espinosa had a somewhat similar tournament, although he won his first-round match, 11-7, over Shoreham junior Salvatore LiVigni to put him in the semifinals. It was there where Espinosa was pinned by eventual county champ Mike Sabella, a junior from Mt. Sinai, which forced him into the wrestlebacks. Espinosa pinned Shoreham freshman Michael Scott in 2:47 to advance to the consolation finals where he was pinned in 2:47 by Center Moriches senior Timothy Delgado.

Espinosa and fellow senior Colby Gill are the only two wrestlers graduating from the program this spring, which leads Ware to think that the best is yet to come for his young team, which has been going through a rebuild the past two years. There are several eighth-graders, including Mick Brown, Alex Boyd, Brad Bockhaus, Juan De Los Santos and Riley Lenahan, to go with Medina and Billy Bockhaus, who will both be seniors next season.

The elder Bockhaus missed much of the season with osteochondritis, a rare but painful injury that affects cartilage or bone in certain joints. Mick Brown, before returning toward the end of the season, suffered from the same injury where only rest can be prescribed to heal it. Ware said the injury is so rare he’s never seen it in his 40 years of wrestling.

Not having Mick Brown and Bill Bockhaus in the wrestling room, Ware said, affected the development of some of the younger wrestlers, and in Bockhaus’s case, was a detriment to his practice partner in Gill.

“With Mickey back, I expect guys like Alex Boyd and Juan De Los Santos to kind of get fast-tracked because they’ll be able to develop much faster, and I thought they developed pretty well without Mickey being there,” he said.

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