Medina hosted early holiday wrestling tourney

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 28 December 2020 at 9:51 am

Contributed Photo – The Individual weight class winners at the 1968 Medina Holiday Wrestling Tournament are shown here. In front are Lee Van Valkenberg (Attica), Jim Glasser (Attica), Gary Merrill (Lyndonville), Rick Root (Medina), Tom Allport (Lyndonville) and Lynn Green (Attica). Standing are Paul Wlosinski (Attica), Bill Ames (Medina), David Jamalkowski (Notre Dame), Dan O’Connor (Notre Dame), Charley Pettit (Medina) and Bruce Briggs (Notre Dame).

Up until this very disruptive Covid-19 Pandemic year tournaments have been a main feature of the high school wrestling season.

The Holley Dual and Team Tournaments, Lyndonville’s Fred Large Memorial Tourney and Medina’s Gary Gross Memorial Tourney have been big events locally.

Medina also hosted one of the area’s first wrestling  tournaments as the Mustangs held a holiday tourney during the Christmas week break for six years in a row during the 1960’s.

The Mustangs won the inaugural event in 1964 besting  Lockport, Starpoint and St. Mary’s of Lancaster for the title.

Medina had five individual weight class winners in the tourney including Bill Blackburn, Ken Nice, Mike Crandall, Jerry Weese and Dennis Higgins.

Attica replaced Starpoint in the tournament field in 1965 and the Blue Devils took charge claiming the championship for five years in a row (1965-69).

Lyndonville competed in the tournament in 1967, 1968 and 1969 and Notre Dame of Batavia was in the tournament field for four years (1966-69).

Lyndonville’s Tom Allport earned the Most Outstanding Wrestler honor in 1968.

Medina had two Most Outstanding Wrestlers – Dennis Higgins in 1966 and Jim Misiti in 1969.