Brunswick School wrestling coach Tim Ostrye sensed the outcome of Thursday's match against town rival Greenwich High School was going to be decided when Bruins sophomore Matt Marvin stepped on the mat for the final matchup of the evening.
"I went through the whole lineup and saw that it could come down to the final match," Ostrye said. "I pointed to Matt and said, `It could come down to you getting a win.' I told him he was the guy I want in the last match because he's mentally tough."
Ostrye's words were indeed prophetic. With the Bruins trailing by one point heading into the last match, Marvin recorded his biggest win ever, pinning Greenwich's Tom Williams in the 195-pound match in 37 seconds, giving Brunswick an exciting 38-33 victory over the Cardinals before a packed house at GHS.
The fans for both squads were loud throughout, but when Marvin registered the pin, the cheers from the Bruins reached a fever pitch as they stormed the mat in celebration.
"That's without a doubt, the No. 1 win I've ever had," Marvin said. "I'm so excited right now, I feel like I'm not on the same planet. This is a great rivalry and we love coming here. To win like we did today -- that's all you can ask for."
Marvin put a half nelson on Williams and was able to get his shoulders to the mat for the win. The triumph marked the second straight year the Bruins beat the Cardinals. Brunswick (18-2) topped Greenwich a year ago 36-29. The Cardinals (10-7), who celebrated Senior Night, hold a 6-5 edge on Bruins in the all-time series.
"To come out here today and beat them in this atmosphere is great," Marvin said. "You could feel the electricity in the air. I was so nervous going into that final match I was shaking, but the adrenaline got me going."
Senior Grant Cucchissi gave the Cardinals a 33-32 lead by defeating Michael Keating, 6-3 in the 182-pound bout. Cucchissi led 2-1 after the second period, but increased his lead with an escape and a take down.
"I really wanted to get the pin because it would have been important for the team, but he did what he had to do for his team," Cucchissi said. "This was a tough match and I didn't think it would be this close. But our team really showed up. We had some young guys in the lineup and they all wrestled tough."
In one of the pivotal matches of the night, Brunswick's Johnny Erdman (170) edged Ray Morris of Greenwich in triple overtime, 5-4. Morris led 4-3 in the third period, but Erdman forced overtime with an escape. Getting another point with an escape in the second overtime got him in the victory in OT.
"I knew going into the match that he was real good, athletic opponent," Erdman said. "I had to wrestle my match, keeping it slow and controlled. I got the one escape in second overtime and in the third I was just trying to hold on for 30 seconds."
"Michael Keating had to not get pinned and Erdman had to win for us to win this match," Ostrye said. "This was a great team effort."
Senior Mike Gestal (160) put the Cards in front, 30-29, by pinning Greg Nabhan in 5:30. Gestal led 8-6 in the third period before the pin.
"It's always good to win your match, but losing as a team hurts," Gestal said. "If there's one way to lose, that's the way to do it. We wrestled tough the entire day and went out fighting."
Another showdown came in the 152-pound class featuring Greenwich's Erick Tack and Brunswick's Connor Kupersmith. Clinging to a 7-6 edge, Kupersmith got Tack's shoulders to the mat in 4:58 with the crowd chanting for both grapplers.
"Everyone looks forward to this match every year," said Kupersmith, a senior. "There's nothing like getting that town crown."
Senior Willy Rosato (220) got the Bruins going, winning his match by pinfall (the first match of the day) in 1:47. Bruins heavyweight Nick Ulanoff followed with an 18-3 technical fall triumph, putting the visitors on top 11-0. Mark Chien (106), a senior, gave GHS its first win, pinning Jack Jones in 2:26. A pin by junior Alex Margeotes gave the Cardinals a 12-11 lead and Greenwich took the 120-pound match by forfeit, opening a seven-point advantage.
"Greenwich matched up well with us," Bell said. "They were good where we were good, so we knew it was going to be a tight match. I just tried to do anything I could do in my match to help the team win."
Bruins senior Petey Briggs (138) held a 4-0 lead in his match, but had to default after injuring his shoulder.
"I dislocated my shoulder, so I have to go to the hospital to see what it looks like," Briggs said. "Hopefully, I can come back for the state tournament. I'm so proud of my teammates for stepping up."
Evan Jonokuchi (145) gave the Bruins a key pin, winning his match in 1:21.
"This loss will hurt tonight and tomorrow, but when our team looks back on this night they should have fond memories," GHS coach George Albano said. "Once a year we go into the big gym for this special event in front of the whole community. I think we showed everyone how hard we work."
Brunswick 38, Greenwich 33
220 -- Will Rosato (B) pin. Erik Menchaca 1:47; 285 -- Nick Ulanoff (B) tech. fall Chris Fischer 18-3; 106 -- Mark Chien (G) pin. Jack Jones 2:26; 113 -- Alex Margeotes (G) pin. Rohan Das; 120 -- James Duffy (G) won by forfeit; 126 -- Owen Schubert (B) dec. Jack Benenson 7-4; 132 -- Jimmy Bell (B) dec. Ben Jones 5-0; 138 -- Jack Freiheit (G) won by injury default; 145 -- Evan Jonokuchi (B) pin. Mike McCaffrey 1:21; 152 -- Connor Kupersmith (B) pin. Erik Tack 4:58; 160 -- Mike Gestal (G) pin. Greg Nabhan 5:30; 170 -- Johnny Erdman (B) dec. Ray Morris 5-4 (3 OT); 182 -- Grant Cucchissi (G) dec. Michael Keating 6-3; 195 -- Matt Marvin (B) pin. Tom Williams :37.
Records: Brunswick 18-2; Greenwich 10-7.