Though the Brunswick School wrestling team already sports an impressive record of 13-2 and is in the midst of a highly successful season, it wouldn't be completely satisfied with its 2012-13 campaign if it didn't win its very own tournament.
Sending seven wrestlers to the finals and several more to the semifinals, the Bruins easily attained one of their season-long goals Saturday before their faithful following.
Racking up a team total of 328 points, the Bruins won the competitive, 14-team Brunswick Invitational Tournament, thanks to its superior depth.
"I was looking at us getting three kids to the finals, so the fact that we got seven into the finals was great," Brunswick coach Tim Ostrye said. "It was a long day and there was a lot of hard work involved in this win, but it was worth it."
Hackley School placed second (203), followed by Suffield Academy (173), Hotchkiss School (145) and Noble & Greenough School (141). It was the fifth straight BIT crown for the Bruins, who did not hold the event last year due to a snow storm.
Briggs won the 138-pound championship, pulling out a 14-11 decision over Max Axelrod of Suffield Academy in a hard-fought, bloody final. The match had to be stopped several times, as both wrestlers were bleeding, mainly Axelrod.
"This is my senior year and last year here at the BIT, so I really wanted to win my weight class this year," Briggs said. "The best I've done here the other three years was third place. I wasn't going to lose this year and it feels very rewarding to win it."
Briggs, who went 4-0 in the tourney, advanced to the finals by pinning Dan Shaw of Hackley School in 3:16 in the semfinal round.
"I was facing some good wrestlers, so I knew I I had to step it up," Briggs said.
Erdman pinned Elliott Bok of Hotchkiss School in the 170-pound final in 1:56. Erdman seized control of the match by applying a well-executed arm bar on Bok.
"Winning this tournament is a great accomplishment for our team," Erdman said. "This is really our first goal of the season and the credit goes to everyone on our team for stepping up today. It was a great team effort."
Rosato was one of the tourney's most dominant wrestlers, pinning each opponent with ease. The top-seeded Rosato pinned his first two opponents in 15 and 32 seconds respectively, then got Greens Farms' Trent Turner's shoulders to the mat in the 220-pound final in a mere 37 seconds.
"I just tried to stay focused in the championship match and tried to do what I did in my other matches," Rosato said. "Winning this tournament is exciting because this is the first time I wrestled in it. Last year was my first year on the team, but the tournament was cancelled because it snowed."
Bruins sophomore Jack Jones (106) made it to the finals of his class, where he lost a tough 11-8 decision to Christian Rivera of Greens Farms Academy. Jones took a 7-4 decision over Spiro Coffinas of Hackley in the semifinals. Hackley was led by Sam Welch, who captured the 126-pound championship with a 6-2 win over Brendan Yuccel of Noble & Greenough School.
Rohan Das, a Brunswick junior, won his first two matches, the second of which came on a 5-3 decision over Hackley's George Germanakos in the 113-pound semifinals. Das put up a good fight against Troy Cote of Chase Collegiate School in the championship match, before Cote put his shoulders to the mat in 1:42.
Brunswick junior Jimmy Bell (132) also made a strong showing. After beating Andrew Fai of Noble, he dropped a 10-6 decision to Marcos Mercado of Hyde School in the finals. Freshman Joe Fervil made it to the finals as well for the Bruins. He was pinned by Mike Yerardi of Suffield in 1:37 after winning his first two matches by pinfall.
"We received so many great performances today throughout our lineup," Ostrye said. "This was a great overall effort by our entire team."
101-pound class -- Daniel Koch (Hotchkiss) dec. Assad Youssef (Hackley) 10-3; 106 -- Christian Rivera (Greens Farms) dec. Jack Jones (Brunswick) 14-8; 113 -- Troy Cote (Chase Collegiate) pin. Rohan Das 1:42; 120 -- Grady Riley (Greens Farms) dec. Andrew Conway (Noble & Greenough) 6-4; 126 -- Sam Welch (Hackley) dec. Brendan Yuccel (Noble & Greenough) 6-2; 132 -- Marcos Mercado (Hyde) dec. Jimmy Bell (Brunswick) 10-6; 138 -- Petey Briggs (B) dec. Max Axelrod (Suffield) 14-11; 145 -- Trent Bellows (Suffield) tech. fall Joe Praino (Chase Collegiate) 18-3; 152 -- Drew Mahoney (Suffield) tech. fall Nick Carola (Hotchkiss) 15-0; 160 -- Dan Toubman (Noble & Greenough) pin. Josh Hillman (Suffield) :48; 170 -- Johnny Erdman (Brunswick) pin. Elliott Bok (Hotchkiss) 1:56; 182 -- John Keally (Noble & Greenough) pin. Rodrigo Mejias (Hackley) 5:41; 195 -- Raymond Sherwood (Marvelwood School) dec. Xavier Carmona (Hackley) 9-4; 220 -- Willy Rosato (Brunswick) pin. Trent Turner (Greens Farms) :37; Heavyweight -- Mike Yerardi (Suffield) pin. Joe Fervil (Brunswick) 1:27.