By KARL E. PEARSON - firstname.lastname@example.org
With no dominant team in Ashtabula County wrestling this season, membership on the Star Beacon All-Ashtabula County team was spread around.
Leading the way is Edgewood senior Christian Severino at 140 pounds. He was one of only three county wrestlers to reach the state tournament by making the Division II field at his weight.
He recorded the most victories of any Ashtabula County wrestler (43) and the most pins of any county competitor, tying Madison’s Nick Montgomery, the only area wrestler to place in Columbus, with 30. With more than 120 career victories, he reached second on the all-time victories’ list for Warrior wrestlers.
For the second straight year, Pymatuning Valley coach Kevin Brown is the Coach of the Year. The Lakers set a school record for dual-match victories with 24 and finished fifth in the Eastern Ohio Wrestling League Tournament, an event that includes teams ranging from Division I through Division III, for its highest finish ever. PV also finished second in the Division III sectional tournament to eventual state team champion Chanel.
Severino is one of three Warriors named to the first team. He is joined by two of the Dickey brothers — Travis (119) and Tyler (145).
Three of Brown’s PV wrestlers are also on the team— Zach Campbell (119), who qualified for the Division III state tournament, but didn’t compete when he failed to make weight, Ray Nevison (160) and Chuck Crowther (189).
Jefferson also has three wrestlers on the team — Joey Baitt (112), Kendrick Maple (103) and Gage Severino (285). He and Christian Severino are cousins.
Two Geneva wrestlers are also on the team — Tommy Padavick (215), the county’s other state tournament qualifier, and Ryan Wright (160).
Grand Valley also has two representatives — Sean Szitas (152) and Matt Zaller (189).
Two Lakeside wrestlers are part of the team — Chris Tatters (135) and Shawn Dell (171).
Completing the team is Conneaut’s Alesha Zappitella (103). She became just the second Ashtabula County girl to reach the district tournament, following in the footsteps of Edgewood graduate Ashley Keenan.
This year’s team is a good mixture of youth and experience. Repeat members of the team are Edgewood’s Severino and Travis Dickey, PV’s Campbell and Crowther, Geneva’s Padavick, Jefferson’s Maple and Lakeside’s Dell.
Jefferson’s Baitt, a freshman, is the youngest member of the team. The squad also includes sophomores Szitas of Grand Valley, Zappitella of Conneaut, Tatters of Lakeside and Campbell and Maple. Juniors on the squad are Jefferson’s Severino, Grand Valley’s Zaller and Edgewood’s Travis Dickey.