The Mattituck /Greenport high school wrestling team faces a big weekend ahead. The Tuckers will host the North Fork Invitational on Saturday when 11 teams will tussle all day.
But then again, they also had a big week last week. The Tuckers went 3-3 overall — 1-1 in Suffolk County League VII competition — and 2-2 at the Half Hollow Hills West Duals.
“The more matches you get, the better,” Mattituck/Greenport Coach Cory Dolson said. “You know what to work on.”
Dolson definitely knows a little more about two of his improved wrestlers under pressure — freshman Ryan Bergin and junior David Dillon.
Bergin, who was brought up as an eighth-grader last year, went 2-1 at 112 pounds in the Hills West Duals. “He’s extremely coachable and he listens very well,” Dolson said.
Trailing his Jericho opponent by 7-3 with 20 seconds remaining in the match, Bergin pulled off a reversal for two points and a near pin for another three to record a dramatic 8-7 triumph at the buzzer.
“For a freshman on a varsity team to be doing something like that is great,” Dolson said.
Dillon registered a 2-2 mark in four matches at 125 pounds, which included a rewarding 4-3 win at Babylon in a meet that the Tuckers had lost.
“Things are finally starting to click for him,” Dolson said. “He was unpolished, but things are starting to click for him. He’s winning a lot of close matches.”
The Tuckers started out with a relatively easy 71-12 victory over Southampton last Thursday. However, Mattituck/Greenport wound up wrestling in only seven matches because its foes did not have enough wrestlers to fill the weight classes.
“We would rather have 15 matches than winning a match like that,” Dolson said.
The Tuckers were awarded seven forfeit wins.
On Friday, Mattituck/Greenport dropped a 42-28 decision at Babylon. Dolson was hoping for a victory, but the hosts had other ideas.
“Hats off to them,” he said. “I don’t think we wrestled our best.”
Tomasz Filipkowski, who pinned his opponent in 57 seconds at 160 pounds, and Brandon Lake, who also recorded a pin in 3:40 at 189, were among the bright spots.
At Hills West, the Tuckers registered a 39-29 victory over Half Hollow Hills East and a 47-23 win over Jericho. They also lost to Brentwood, 66-9, and to the hosts, 48-19.
Wilson Quizhpi pinned his foe in 2:35 at 103 pounds in the Hills East match and defeated his Jericho opponent, 11-0.
The North Fork Invitational will start at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday. The competing schools include Connetquot, Rocky Point, Miller Place, Riverhead, North Babylon, Southampton, Hampton Bays, Hills West, Hills East and Calhoun.
As Dolson said, the more matches and experience, the better.