Greenwich/Brunswick wrestlers renew rivalry

One of the high school sporting events I look forward to covering the most during the winter is the annual Greenwich High School-Brunswick wrestling match.

The Cardinals and Bruins’ hockey teams haven’t played each other in years, the lacrosse teams haven’t met in several seasons and the football teams never face each other. Except for scrimmages that is, but the football teams put an end to their scrimmages a few years ago. Thankfully, the wrestling rivalry continues.

Brunswick posted a 36-29 win against Greenwich last season, notching its first win vs. the Cardinals since 2009. I remember how impressed I was with how loud and energetic last year’s crowd was at Brunswick and I’m expecting the same type of noise to be heard at Greenwich High today when the Cardinals and Bruins grapple at 6 p.m.

The match is being held in the main gymnasium, where the basketball teams play, so plenty of seating is available. Two years ago, when Greenwich beat the Bruins, the stands were nearly full at GHS and that should be the case on Thursday. Maybe the Cardinal Crazies will be in the house for the big match?

Both teams are in the midst of strong seasons. The Bruins won another FAA championship this past Saturday (their 16th straight) and captured their own tournament title two weeks ago for the fifth consecutive year. The Cardinals, meanwhile, have improved steadily as the season has progressed.

Thursday should feature many intriguing matches. The 152-pound match match between Greenwich’s Erick Tack and Brunswick’s Connor Kupersmith should be one to watch. Ray Morris (Greenwich) and Johnny Erdman (Brunswick) have given their respective opponents problems in the 170-pound class. Willy Rosato has been a dominant force for the Bruins at 220, while Grant Cucchissi has powered the Cards at 182.

Mike Gestal (160, Greenwich) and Petey Briggs (138, Brunswick) have won the majority of their matches at their respective classes for the Cardinals and Bruins. This matchup looks pretty even, with each team holding the edge in certain weight classes. Though it lost last winter, Greenwich leads the all-time series 6-4. The Cards had a run of six wins in seven years prior to losing last year.

So Cardinals and Bruins fans, check out Thursday’s match. It should be a close one in a rivalry that we hope continues for years to come.

Dave Fierro