Saturday January 26, 2013

Ray Miro's Mount Greylock wrestlers are as healthy as they're going to be heading into today's Mountie Invitational in Williamstown.

So is he, in fact.

Miro missed Greylock's dual-meet win over Taconic this week due to illness, but will be back today as the Mounties hit the mats with approximately 20 other teams.

"We've got people with dings here, but that's the nature of the beast," Miro said.

All four county teams -- Greylock, Monument Mountain, Mount Everett and Taconic -- will be on hand, as well as teams from Eastern Mass., New York, Rhode Island and Vermont. One New York team, Colonie Central, will field ‘A' and ‘B' squads.

Four mats will be used in the MGRHS gymnasium today. Wrestling is expected to start around 9:30 a.m., with the championship round expected to begin at 6 p.m. at the earliest.

Miro's goal is for his team to see the toughest competition it can at this point in the season, with the Western Mass. tournament at Monument Mountain just two weeks away. He wants his better wrestlers to get tested, and he wants his younger wrestlers to get a feel for high-level competition.

"It's going to be a pretty deep tournament, which is good," the coach said.

Monument Mountain not only has its sights set on hosting Western Mass., but also its upcoming Tuesday dual rematch with Greylock in Great Barrington. The Mounties took the first meeting in Williamstown.

Spartans coach Gordie Soule feels his team is strongest between the 145-pound and 170-pound weight classes -- specifically, with Alex Dupont at 145; Mike Molina at 152; Craig Cooley at 160; and Mark Leon-Duque at 170.

"We are definitely working toward achieving some goals we set early in the year," Soule said. "We are certainly excited about wrestling Greylock, that's for sure."

Miro is looking for solid performances from Mitch Graves (145-152), Travis Hilchey (126) and Ross Jackson (195).

"There's a chance for [Hilchey] to really push himself and get some good competition again," Miro said. "He had some last weekend [in Vermont]."

Mount Everett will have a couple of wrestlers out due to illness, and will be without Nick Scapin (152), who has an injured elbow. However, the Eagles will have Bradley Lupiani at 113. He's 19-1 going into the Invitational.

"He's had a good year," Everett assistant Dan Lanoue said. "He's wrestled some tough kids."

Matt Fosby, at 145, will be in his first matches in approximately two weeks. Fosby is coming back from a pulled muscle in his back.

One of Taconic's standouts will be putting academics first today. Tajaye Davis, at 220 pounds, will not be at the Invitational, but will be taking the SAT.

Chamberlain expects a big day from Travis Kuni at 152, who beat Graves head-to-head Thursday in Williamstown.

"We're young, so we make young mistakes sometimes," Chamberlain said. "But honestly, this year, I've been happy with the way we've wrestled."

The Braves have a busy schedule coming up, but coach Matt Chamberlain knows how important today is for individual Western Mass. seeding.

"We've got [Saturday], then we've got Everett on Tuesday, then West Springfield. Then, eyes on Western Mass.," he said. "My kids know they have some kids in the brackets they want to see [today], and they want to come out ahead in those matches."

To reach Matthew Sprague:
msprague@berkshireeagle.com,
or (413) 496-6254.
On Twitter: @EagleSportsZone.