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Colon Becomes County's All-Time Wins Leader

BHS senior captures District 14 crown, surpassing his older brother

As expected, Justin Colon surpassed his brother and became Essex County's all-time winningest wrestler Saturday evening after winning the District 14 126-pound championship at Livingston High School.

Colon pinned Nutley's Stephen Scuttaro in 1:18, improving his record to 157-19 while moving ahead of his older brother Filiberto, who went 156-14 from 2004-08 at Belleville High School. The senior should add to his victory total this coming weekend when he vies for a third Region 4 title at West Orange High School; he needs just two to surpass both Delbarton's Mike Grey and Raritan's Dan Seidenberg, who won 158 apiece.

Overall, Belleville will send six wrestlers through to Region 4, although Colon was his team's only champion Saturday. Ricky Gencarelli lost by a 16-1 technical fall in 3:54 to Nutley's Tombretta at 120.

Meanwhile, the trio of Sean Carey (7-3 loss to Newark Academy's Patrick Gerish at 138), Anthony Avino (4-1 defeat vs. Bloomfield's Nate Garcia at 145), and Joe Anello (5-1 setback vs. Nutley's Brandon Keena at 160) proved competitive while losing in their respective title bouts. 

The Buccaneers' other finalist, Daniel Giangrande, suffered a 12-3 major-decision defeat against Nutley's Nick Gaeta at 195.

Four other Belleville grapplers lost their third-place bouts: Nick Fruncillo (170), Nick Nardachone (182), Alex Osorio (220), and Nate James (285).

Overall, Nutley captured the District 14 team title with 237.5 points, followed by Livingston (171.5), Bloomfield (163), and Belleville (160).

Preliminary bouts in the Region 4 brackets will begin Wednesday and include the Buccaneer quintet of Anello, Avino, Carey, Gencarelli, and Giangrande. Action will continue Friday, with the tourney concluding Saturday. The top-three finishers in each weight class qualify for the NJSIAA tournament held at Atlantic City's Boardwalk Hall between March 2-4.

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