"Things didn't turn out the way I wanted or thought they should. But in the end, wrestling has taught me more than I can remember. I am excited for my future and although hard to truly feel it right now, I am proud of my past. With regards to the perpetual support I and my teammates alike have received, thank you all. It is not taken for granted. I hope to cross paths in the future with each and every one of you so that I can personally thank you. Build and Believe."
Friday night Monsignor Farrell Alum and current Army 141-pounder Connor Hanafee was defeated 5-3 by West Virginia's Nathan Pennesi. The loss eliminated Connor from the NCAA Tournament. Connor compiled a record of 21-15 on the year and a career mark of 52-39. This year Connor placed 4th at the Oklahoma-Gold Tournament, 5th at the New York Collegiate States, 5th at the Southern Scuffle, and 7th at the EIWA's. Connor was the first Monsignor Farrell Alum to compete in the NCAA Tournament and the first competetor at the tournament with ties to Beat the Streets.
On a personal note, Connor's statement after his loss, posted above, clearly demonstrates what a fine, upstanding man he has become. He is an excellent representative of Beat the Streets, Monsignor Farrell, USMA, and every other organization he's ever been a part of. Hopefully, Connor's example will blaze a trail for future generations of New York City wrestlers.
Monsignor Farrell Alum Connor Hanafee, the first wrestler with BTS ties to ever compete in the NCAA Division I Tournament, fell in his opening round match by a score of 12-2 to Joey Lazor of Northern Iowa. Hanafee now moves into the consolation bracket where he will wrestle Nathan Pennesi of West Virginia. Pennesi entered the tournament with a record of 21-9 and lost 8-3 in the first round to Luke Vaith of Hofstra. If Hanafee beats Pennesi he will wrestle Frank Cimato of Drexel. Hanafee defeated Cimato 8-7 earlier this season.
The match will be broadcast at 7:30pm tonight, tune in to espn3.com to watch the Lions alum.
Starting today, the eyes of the wrestling world will be on Des Moines, IA and the NCAA Division I Wrestling Tournament. The featured weight class for the event is 165 pounds, where Cornell’s Kyle Dake will attempt to become the first wrestler to win four titles at four different weight classes. His likely finals opponent is David Taylor of Penn State. The Nittany Lion is 96-2 on his career and is the defending National Champion at 165. Last season, Taylor cleaned up the individual awards, taking home the the NCAA Championship's Outstanding Wrestler Award, the NCAA season Most Dominant Award, and wrestling's Heisman, Dan Hodge Trophy as the best wrestler in the country.
As much of the country focuses on the 165 lbs. weight class, New York City will look at 141 where Monsignor Farrell’s Connor Hanafee will represent Army. The Black Knight Senior is 21-13 on the season. He qualified for nationals by placing 7th at the EIWA Tournament. Hanafee already owns wins over four of his competitors in the tournament, having beaten Dean Pavlou (Tennesee-Chattanooga), Brandon Nelsen (Purdue), Frank Cimato (Drexel), and Julian Feikert (Oklahoma State). His wins over Keikert and Pavlou came at the very competitive Southern Scuffle, where Hanafee went 7-2 to place 5th.
New York City's first high school state champion, Adis Radoncic represented Team New York in the NY-NJ dual meet main event of the 2013 Pinning Down Autism All-State Weekend Festival.
He took on Ethan Ramos of Hawthorne, NJ who is ranked 10th at 170 lbs. in InterMat's latest national poll and won a 2013 NJ state championship last weekend. Ramos took a hard-fought 5-4 decision, with several lead changes and some great scrambles. Radoncic sustained several lacerations from an exposed piece of metal on Ramos' headgear, requiring two blood time outs and wraps to his hand, thigh, and lower leg.
Also competing out of the PSAL was Brooklyn Tech's Kevin Tynes, who filled in for state champion Dan Choi at 195 lbs. Tynes took 6th place in Albany. He faced off against Anthony Messner of Franklin High School, a 2013 NJ state runner-up. Messner emerged with the 8-3 decision.
However, Team NY took the dual meet for the third year in a row, 29-21. Check out the complete coverage at Gotham City Wrestling, as well as the photos and videos after the jump.
This is the third year of the event which was founded by Monsignor Farrell Assistant Coach Jason Bross and benefits Pinning Down Autism. In previous years, the event has been limited to a dual meet between New York and New Jersey; New York has won each year by a slim margin.
This year, the event has been expanded and will take place over two days, Saturday-Sunday March 16-17th at New Jersey's West Orange High School. New York's team looks especially strong this year. All 15 wrestlers representing the Empire State have won state championships, with all but 1 winning this year.
Visit the event page at pinningdownautism.org.
The deadline for the Become Your Own Dream Scholarship is March 29th, 2013. The Scholarship is a 1-year award that goes to help a New York City student-athlete who has overcome hardship, graduated from high school, and plans to wrestle in college. It was created by Hooman Tavakolian and co-founded by Lorelei Martin and Jon Tush. Past Scholarship recipients are William Vera, Amanda Jackson, and Ahmed Elsayed. They used the scholarship money to enroll at Nassau Community College, the Naval Academy, and Brown University respectively.
For information on the award including how to apply, please visit the BYOD Scholarship page.
Mark your calendars for next weekend as Monsignor Farrell Alum Connor Hanafee will represent the Army Black Knights at 141 pounds in the NCAA Division I National Wrestling Tournament. Connor qualified by placing 7th last weekend at the EIWA Tournament. Connor is the first NCAA qualifier from Monsignor Farrell and the first BTS-affiliated NCAA qualifier.
Hanafee began his career in the Lions Wrestling Club and competed in the BTS Junior League. Connor wrestled under then Monsignor Farrell Head Coach Lou Destefano and won two CHSAA Titles while placing sixth in the New York State Tournament as a senior.
Hanafee had a rough start to the season and his record stood at 6-6 entering December. But since then, he has been on a tear, winning 15 of his last 22 matches and placing at both the EIWA’s and Southern Scuffle. Hanafee enters the National Tournament with an impressive 21-13 record.
The NCAA committee did not do Connor any favors. He will wrestle Joey Lazor of Northern Iowa in a pigtail bout. The winner of that match will wrestle Bryan Pearsall of Penn State. Should Connor win his first two matches he will likely wrestle undefeated Kendric Maple of Oklahoma.
Visit the BTS website next week for coverage of Connor at the NCAA Tournament
Video of Connor's match in High School against the Russian Junior Team