Photo Gallery | Taconic wrestling tops Monument Mountain
PITTSFIELD >> It was a perfect ending to the regular season for the Taconic wrestling team.
The Berkshire County champions wrapped up a perfect 6-0 league slate by beating visiting Monument Mountain 44-23 Wednesday night. Senior Austin Houghtaling earned a 4-2 decision over Steven Wool at 182 pounds to clinch the team victory and that enabled the braves to roll through the county undefeated.
"It's a great feeling that I won, but having everyone else going out there and winning, it's even better," Houghtaling said, "knowing that we won as a team, and not just by one bout.
"The whole team should have some glory because this hasn't been done forever."
The 'this' was winning the Berkshire County league title. In fact the last time the Braves had their name on the Berkshire County championship trophy was for its co-championship with Mount Greylock in 2010.
"This will be the first time ever that we'll have our name only Taconic on the trophy by itself," said Taconic coach Jeremy Tetreault.
The trophy, which came down earlier in the week from Williamstown, sat on the scorer's table.
"I knew we had it because we got it [Tuesday] during practice," said Mason Papirio. "We all were excited about it. It's the first time we've won it in a while. It feels good to have it back where it belongs.
"Hopefully, it'll stay a couple of more years."
While it was Houghtaling whose decision gave Taconic enough points for the margin of victory, it was Papirio's win at 138 that turned the tide.
Papirio was leading Monument's Katahdin Jenen 13-1 with time winding down in the second period. But Papirio got the pin at 3:49. That turned a 14-12 Monument lead into an 18-14 lead for the Braves.
Twice, Monument cut Taconic's lead to one point. The second time came when the Spartans' Haedyn Gerow pinned Marky Perras at 160. But the Braves won the final four contested bouts and got a forfeit at 285 for the win.
"I think the middle of our lineup is the strongest," said Papirio. "From '32 to '82, those are our strong suits. We can always count on those guys to get the wins."
For Monument Mountain, this match played out in a similar fashion to when the teams met in Great Barrington last month.
"They got a couple extra guns this year than we do. It's been that way all year," said Spartans coach Simon Jones. "Those few matches there, like you said, through the middle, were close. They were one or two-point matches or overtime. The guys just didn't get the points when they needed to tonight."
The overtime bout was at 220 when Austin Peck broke a 2-2 tie with four seconds left in the first overtime period to beat Bart Christiano 5-2.
Up next for the teams here is a visit to the state duals this weekend, with the Western Massachusetts Division III meet the following week. Both teams are looking forward to getting wrestlers healed up and set to go for the D-III meet.
"I'm just looking to have people healthy, ready to go and giving their all at Western Mass," said Tetreault.
106 pounds — Max Buffoni (MM) def. Zach Mathes TF 20-5.
113 — Eli Jones (MM) def. Ari Burke TF 19-3.
120 — Sam Miller (T) pins Ian Haddad 2:14.
126 — Dorian Page I(MM) def. Jake Maher 10-3.
132 — Zabian Powell (T) wins by forfeit.
138 — Mason Papirio (T) pins Katahdin Jenen 3L49.
145 — Nate Cormier (MM) def. Nick Bailey 9-4.
152 — Isiah Williams (T) pins Jose Sagastume :35.
160 — Haedyn Gerow (MM) pins Marky Perras 2:26.
170 — Tanner Hastings (T) def. Sean Schaeffer TF 16-0.
182 — Austin Houghtaling (T) def. Steven Wool 4-2.
195 — Tyler Klose (T) def. John Field 5-3.
220 — Dalton Peck (T) def. Bart Christiano 5-2, OT.