CROSS RIVER, N.Y. After his first year at the New York State Wrestling camp, Joe Mastro wanted to become more involved. So the Yorktown senior became a counselor.
"It is a lot of fun working with and helping the little kids," said Mastro, a four-year varsity wrestler and a 2012 Division I 145-pound finalist. "The kids are eager to learn, and they pick things up quick, which is really good."
Mastro is helping at the ninth annual camp at John Jay Middle School, working with future Section 1 wrestlers.
Former Mahopac and Cornell great Joe Mazzurco and his Cornell teammate Troy Nickerson are the guest clinicians. Mazzurco is a three-time Section 1 wrestling champion and 1999 New York State titlist. Mazzurco, who finished with 191 varsity wins, was also a state runner-up and third-place finisher. He went on to be a two-time all-American at Cornell. Nickerson, an Iowa State assistant wrestling coach, was a five-time New York State titlist and all-American at Cornell.
At camp, Mastro was working with a group of young kids, modeling moves and explaining each one so the boys understood. He enjoys working with the kids, but Mastro also learns on the job.
"You learn from Joe (Mazzurco) and Troy (Nickerson) and understanding the technique they are teaching helps when I explain it to the little kids," Mastro said during a break. "Joe and Troy help us out so much. As a counselor, I learn something new each year and apply it to my wrestling."
Now that Mastro is a fixture at the camp, the kids look forward to working with him.
"The campers that I had the previous year, when they come back they knew me and that makes it a lot of fun, knowing they had a good time with me."
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