YORKTOWN HEIGHTS, N.Y. - In his first year as the Yorktown varsity wrestling coach, John Tornambe made a bold move. Tornambe promoted a large group of eighth-graders, who had wrestled on modified for him the previous year. Tornambe felt they were ready to make an impact. He was right.
The current junior class has helped Yorktown become a rising power in Section 1. The Cornhuskers are looking to continue their progress this season. When coach brought us up, that was a special year for us and he was able to get a lot out us, said junior Steven Sabella.
The junior nucleus also includes Joe Mastro, Kyle Santucci, Jimmy Kashian, Dave Varian and Tom Murray. That was a big leap for us, said Sabella of the jump from modified to varsity. It was a new experience for us. We feel that year helped us tremendously. That is when we knew we had to work much harder because coach raised the bar.
Yorktown has responded with pair of double-digit win seasons the past two years. Along with the 20-plus victories both years, Yorktown has qualified more than half of its starting lineup for sectionals and come away with place finishers.
That first year was tough, but we were thankful that coach called us up, Sabella said. Every year has been a steady progression for us, which is what we want. Weve gotten more mat time and more experience each year, which has made us better. Last year, getting 11 wins pushed us harder coming back this year. That shows that all of our hard work is paying off and it gives us that drive to take it even father this year.
Yorktown has a deep group of underclassmen aiming to make an impact on the team. Sophomore Nick Driscoll headlines this group. The underclassmen are working hard and showing us that they want to be a part of our success, Sabella said.
Tornambe has stepped up the intensity in the room and with the schedule. Yorktown will compete in the Bethpage (L.I.) tournament, Sat., Dec. 10. Sabella and his teammates are looking forward to the difficult schedule because they understand facing tough competition will benefit them for sectionals.
Because weve raised the bar and want to meet our goals, we want to get everyone in peek condition, Sabella said. Its all about how you perform in sectionals.
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