Webster's Gillespie, Spencerport shine at Counties
January 30, 2005


Webster's Gillespie, Spencerport shine at Counties
By James Johnson, Staff writer
Sunday, January 30, 2005

Full Text: Copyright © 2005 Rochester Democrat and Chronicle.
Reproduced by armdrag.com with the permission.

WEBSTER — Once the whistle was blown, Gregor Gillespie crouched down into a stance where the fingers on his right hand were at mat-level.

It's not often that the Webster Schroeder senior is at a low-point during a match. Not with 220 high school varsity wins.

Not with his track-record at the Monroe County Championships. Gillespie became the first five-time champion of the annual league tournament Saturday, after he eased through the 152-pound division.

"Winning something five times is a big deal no matter what it is," said the former state champion, after he improved to 33-0 this season. "I haven't had too many guys not wrestle me (aggressively), which is nice. I like to get matches in."

Gillespie worked fast during the tournament. A win over Spencerport's Adam Snook in the 152-pound final that took 2:10 to polish off, gave Gillespie his fourth technical fall in as many matches during the tournament.

Even Spencerport's cheering section gave Gillespie respectful applause at match's end.

"Here's Gregor," Brockport coach James Cannon said, as he raised one hand above the other. "Here's everyone else.

"I think he enjoys the battle, the chance to show what he can do. What he does is very impressive. He's one of the slickest wrestlers I've seen."

No one has watched any team but Spencerport win at this tournament the last 14 years.

"It's something that we've worked all year for," Spencerport senior Mike Collura said. "When we lost at the Union-Endicott Duals, it was a wake-up call.

"Everything in practice picked up. We're finally wrestling how we should."

Mike Terenzi at 96, Mike Hicks at 130, Collura at 160, Jared Plucknette at 189 and 275-pounder Tom Rodak earned first-place points for the Rangers. Hicks was a surprise winner, as he decisioned Rush-Henrietta's Phil Gordon, 4-2 in the final.

Collura earned his first individual County title after he defeated Pittsford's Chris Henderson, 6-2. Afterward, Collura sported a shiner under his right eye.

"I lost in the semifinals last year," Collura said. "It's awesome. I've come close, I'd never won (a tournament like this).

"Last year, I lost in the semis at counties and sectionals. It feels good to win one."

It's a good time for Spencerport to get a winning-edge back.

The Rangers wrestle Tuesday at Brockport, the Monroe County team runner-ups after Justin James at 140 and Erik Schuth at 145 won their divisions. Spencerport then goes to Canandaigua on Saturday.

Brighton senior Aneal Ram, who repeated as the 171-pound champion, hopes that he's going places this season, too.

Ram injured ligaments in his right ankle during the sectionals last season. He continued to wrestle, but any momentum was gone and hopes of advancing to states were gone after the first round of qualifiers.

"I was very upset when I heard it," Ram said. "It broke my heart.

"I wasn't going to be able to make noise at SuperSectionals. This is the year I try to keep up the intensity. I'm trying to get to the next level."

Gillespie, who has 11 losses and can remember all of them, is there.

"Losses really bother me," said Gillespie, who is nationally ranked in a handful of magazines. "When I do lose, I really dwell on it. They stick with me.

"I'm competitive in everything that I do, even playing video games with some of my friends. Last year, I was too worried about winning a state title, instead of the match in front of me."