Poland wrestling sweeps tri meet, improves to 11-1

POLAND – Sweeping a triangular meet with Girard and Jefferson wasn’t as productive as it seemed to Poland High School wrestling coach Tony Stellato.

The Bulldogs trounced the Falcons, 61-12, and edged Girard, 37-30. That improved Poland’s record to 11-1 and 4-0 in Division III of the Eastern Ohio Wrestling League, but Stellato said the Bulldogs looked sluggish and lacked an attacking mindset against the Indians (6-3, 2-1 EOWL, Division III).

“(Girard) came to wrestle tonight,” Stellato said. “They were pushing the action, pushing the pace and were more aggressive than we were today. We’ve got to get hungry again and be ready to go, and it starts (today). They can’t be satisfied with their record or where they’re at right now. They have to continue to be hungry and push forward.”

There was some good news for Poland, and it started with 160-pound freshman Anthony Audi beating Girard junior James Cupan, 3-2. That set the tone for the upperweights, which won three straight after the upset by Audi.

“That was one that kind of swung some momentum in our direction,” Stellato said.

Girard won six of the 13 matches wrestled (Poland received a forfeit at 106), and while that’s a good accomplishment against a team that is definitely the odds-on favorite to win the league title in Division III, Indians’ coach Jim Cardiero doesn’t care for moral victories.

“I thought we wrestled competitively in some of the matches, but we have to start winning those matches,” he said. “Being close isn’t good enough. A lot of guys stepped up for us. We’re coming along. We’re not where we need to be yet, but we’re making positive strides, and that’s a good sign at this time of year.”