Stratford-Newtown match

Stratford’s Brandon Murphy in red singlet and Newtown’s Ed Lajoie meet in the 160-pound match on Thursday. Murphy won by second-period fall.
(Photo by Bill Bloxsom)

When all was said and done, Newtown High was just too strong for Stratford High  in winning its South-West Conference wrestling match 54-25 at the Needham Gymnasium on Thursday night.
Stratford struck first when Mike Lapia defeated Newtown’s Ryan King 12-4 in the opening 120-poud bout.
Lapia led 2-1 after one period and used three late back points in the second stanza to bolster the count to 7-2.
The sophomore had a quick reversal in the third, and offset a King switch with an escape and a takedown to post the major decision.
Newtown’s Matt Gonzalez recorded the first of six first-period falls for the Nighthawks at 126.
Stratford’s Brian Evan got those six team points back when the junior battled back to pin Mike Long at 2:24 of their 132-pound match.
Long used a five-point move to lead 7-1 after one period, before Evan turned him over.
Newtown’s Jaime Leuci (138) pinned sophomore Anthony Alvarez in 3:16 before the Hawks’ Logan Walsh (145) scored a match-best seven-second fall to boost their advantage to 18-10.
Newtown’s Chase Hutchinson pinned sophomore Brendan Figueroa in 1:15 at 152, but Stratford 160-pounder Brandon Murphy drew those points back with 2:34 fall after leading Ed Lajoie 11-4.
Forrest Speed lived up to his name with a 29-second fall over sophomore Dariel Diaz at 170 and the Nighthawks’ captain Max Temple won by injury default over James Jackson in a tight bout in the 182-pound class.
Newtown’s Andy Hubina pinned freshman Jack Branco in 1:25 at 1:25 to up the Nighthawk’s lead to 42-16.
Stratford junior Jonathan Smith then edged Trey Dewald in a 3-2 six-minute grinder.
Newtown’s Steven Grasso pinned sophomore Kylani Walker in 47 seconds to take the heavyweight bout and the Hawks’ Luca Crudo took his 106-pound rival Matt DiCostanzo to his back in 1:12.
Stratford’s Will Rooney was awarded a forfeit at 113.

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