The Journal Register (Medina, NY)

Local Sports

November 27, 2013

Albion wrestling looks to battle in 2013-14 N-O season


Veteran Albion wrestling coach Keith Piccirilli has been around for many, and he has seen a lot of ebbs and flows in the local wrestling scene over the years. Throughout it all, he has maintained a high level of respect for the Niagara-Orleans League, and the quality wrestlers the league produces season after season.

With that in mind, Piccirilli knows that it may be hard for his relatively inexperienced team to fare well this season. The squad will certainly try its best, and should be competitive, but a high number of wins may be difficult to come by.

“We’re pretty young,” Piccirilli pointed out. “On the positive side, we have one or two kids to count on, our studs, and we didn’t really have that last year. We have a bunch of good, hard-working kids, and that should help us against the good competition in the league.”

Leading the Purple Eagles on the mats will be senior returners Brandon Brown (145 lbs), Justyn Haines (152), Ed Wolfe (160), Aaron Mulroy (182), Dylan Burkhardt (220) and Austin Klein (285).

Also returning are junior Aaron Burnside (138 lbs), sophomore Jordan Wolcott (106) and freshman Blake Aina (132).

Piccirilli pointed to the consistent success of N-O wrestlers against sectional competition and beyond, which is even more impressive considering the challenges of fielding a full wrestling roster in all 15 weight classes. The 32nd-year coach, who teaches middle school social studies, said that the Purple Eagles began the year bunched up in the middle weight ranges, and that the squad could be shorthanded in the lighter weight classes throughout the winter season.

He also noted that last season, in which the Purple Eagles struggled, Albion had to forfeit in some of the lighter weight classes on occasion, which was obviously a detriment in dual meets.

This year, although forfeits could potentially pose a problem again, Albion looks to bring its best effort each and every match.

The Purple Eagles open their season on Dec. 4 in a non-league match at Kendall. Albion’s N-O league season begins on Dec. 11, with a home match against Akron.

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