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  Boardman Wrestlers Host Season-Opening Tournament  
  Six Teams Take To Mats Saturday, Dec. 1 At 10:00 A.M. At Spartan Gym:   November 29, 2018 Edition  
     BY AL MILLER
      wrestling reporter
      Boardman High School’s wrestling team starts this season with two co-head coaches. Coach Dom Mancini is starting his 18th year as head coach and is joined by his brother Frank Mancini.
      The Spartans did not have a state qualifier in the last two years, but they start this season with two state-ranked wrestlers and they are brothers. Senior Mike O’Horo is ranked 5th at 182# and Freshman Sean O’Horo is ranked 11th at 132#.
      Mike O’Horo is coming off a team leading 38-win season last year and Sean O’Horo is coming off a 50-win Junior High season, including a state runner-up finish at the Covelli Center.
      Boardman also has three District Qualifiers returning this season---Anthony Baglama, Nick Esmail and Kareem Hamden.
      The Spartans have a large (16) and talented freshman class coming in, that are led by Sean O’Horo and Junior High State Qualifiers Dominic Vennetti, Daniel Ferry, Christian Odom, Tyler Rea and Blaine Strines.
      The Sparans open the season hosting the Boardman Subaru Duals on Saturday, Dec. 1. Competing in the dual match tournament are Boardman, Alliance, Fitch, GlenOak, Cuyahoga Falls and Jefferson.
      The Spartans only have two home dual matches this season and they are against two of the top teams in the state. On January 9, Boardman hosts the Canfield Cardinals ranked third in the state with seven, state-ranked wrestlers. On February 13, they host the Beaver Local Beavers ranked seventh in the state with seven state-ranked wrestlers.
      “We’re going to have a young team. We have a lot of really good freshmen this year. I think we’re going to be competitive. It’s a big challenge when you are going up against teams like Beaver Local and Canfield. There are going to be some challenging dual meets but overall I think we’ll do well,” Coach Dom Mancini said.
      Boardman’s top away dual meet will be on December 22 at Louisville where they will wrestle West Branch with three state-ranked wrestlers and Louisville, ranked fourth in the state with six state-ranked wrestlers.
      The Spartans will be competing in both the Eastern Ohio Wrestling League and the All-American Conference this year. Canfield is the favorite in both.
      Boardman’s varsity will compete in the Beaver Local Everett Hoppel Tournament Dec. 15, the 54th Kenston Invitational Dec. 28 and 29, the 43rd EOWL Tournament Jan. 11 and 12 at Fitch, the 33rd Alliance Top Gun Tournament Jan. 18 and 19 and the 26th Josh Hephner Tournament Jan. 25 and 26.
      “I think we’re going to have a pretty good tournament team. We have some upperclassmen who hopefully are going to lead the way and hopefully that some of these younger guys can perform well too, seeing that these older guys are placing and winning tournaments, Coach Dom said.
      Assistant coaches for this year’s team are Jack Raver, Kevin Powell and Nick Mancini.
      Boardman warmed-up for the season with scrimmages at Fitch and Canfield where many of the varsity wrestlers wrestled tough against good competition.
      “I would say our seniors Mike O’Horo and Kareem Hamden have impressed me the most so far, but I think we have had some freshmen working hard as well. I give that credit to the seniors for pushing those kids,” Coach Frank said.
      The Spartans will again be competing in the North Canton Hoover District. At this time it is not known whether the Wadsworth Sectional or the Willoughby South Sectional will be competing at Hoover. It has also not been determined what sectional Boardman will be participating in. Politics is not limited to Washington D.C. It has raised it’s ugly head in high school wrestling this year!
      The State Tournament will be held in the Schottenstein at The Ohio State University on March 7-9, 2019.
      “The goal is to get three kids to state. They have to wrestle well and improve but I think they are the kind of kids to will do that. I don’t want to say their names yet because that will put too much pressure on them, but I think we’ll get three,” Coach Frank said.
      The starting lineup for the 2018-2019 edition of the Spartans at the opening meet of the season will be determined in wrestle offs that will be held this week.
 
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