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Twinsburg wrestling coach Dave Mariola is a realist.
Mariola knew his team was facing two very different challenges when it hosted a Suburban League National Conference tri-meet Jan. 5.
The Tigers took care of business against Cuyahoga Falls, scoring a 55-12 win, but then dropped a 56-10 loss to Brecksville-Broadview Heights.
Twinsburg moved to 2-2 overall and in the National Conference.
Mariola said the competition level was about what he expected.
"I thought we wrestled really well against Cuyahoga Falls," Mariola said. "We had five freshmen in the lineup against Cuyahoga Falls and they all performed well. When you talk about Brecksville you have to take about all the teams that are notorious for being top 10 teams in the state. We're starting to build back up to where they are."
The strongest performances on the night came from Twinsburg's upper middle weights.
Sophomore 160-pounder Austin Ceffaratti scored a pin against Falls and a 15-3 decision against Brecksville, followed by senior 170-pounder Jared Eaton scoring an 8-1 decision and an 8-4 decision. Sophomore 182-pounder John Delisio also got two wins, scoring a forfeit against the Black Tigers and an 8-4 decision against the Bees.
"They came to wrestle and they did a good job," Mariola said.
Unfortunately, those three wins would be the Tigers' lone victories against Brecksville. While noting Brecksville might be a little bit down compared to recent years, Mariola still said the Bees have plenty of quality.
Against Cuyahoga Falls, Mariola said both teams were down three starters, but the Tigers had some freshmen step up.
That quintet included regular starters Ricky Diturno at 106 pounds (13-2), Mike Magyar at 113 (pin) and Jack Turle at 138 (forfeit). Mariola was very pleased with freshman 126-pounder Devion Rhinehart and 132-pounder Henry Ovalle, each of whom won by pin.
Twinsburg also got a 3-1 win from 120-pounder Brandon Callow, an 8-5 win from 152-pounder Joe Voltz and pin from heavyweight Nate Bedell against the Black Tigers.
Up next for Twinsburg is the 30th annual Bill Dies Memorial Tournament Jan. 13 and 14 at the new Akron Firestone High School. First match Jan. 13 is set for 4:30 p.m.
"We're looking for being able to compete," Mariola said. "There's 46 teams there and four of those teams, I know for sure, are ranked in the top 10 of the state. We're looking for placement. Anything in the top four would be excellent."