Wrestling Team Takes Over Top Ranking in New York State

Claudia Corbett, Reporter

The Wantagh Warriors Wrestling team is back on top as the mid-season rankings find the Warriors the No. 1-ranked team in the state. With a current 19-0 dual-meet the Warriors are feeling confident entering the rest of this year. 

In early January Wantagh has defeated three teams that are usually very good, Long Beach (50-22), Uniondale (68-3) and neighboring Seaford (48-27). The team still has a very long season ahead with counties coming up with Nassau County dual meet and county championships  as well as the New York State dual and individual Championships. 

Every year Wantagh Wrestling supplies a roster filled with talented competitors. 

Wantagh senior, Josiah Encarnacion, is ranked No. 1 at 126 pounds regarding the New York High School Division 1 Individual rankings. Senior Matt Rogers is also ranked at No. 1 for his weight class which is 182. 

Both of these wrestlers play a key role in this team’s success. Rogers and Encarnacion recently committed to further their wrestling careers at big D1 schools next fall. Encarnacion will attend the University of Virginia and Rogers committed to the United States Naval Academy. 

When asked about their goals and accomplishments regarding this season both captains seemed to be on the same track. 

 “My goals for the season are to win a state title, and I am working hard everyday to achieve that,” said Rogers, whose younger brother Benny, a sophomore, is also one team’s top competitors. “I feel us being ranked No. 1 in the state is good, but rankings don’t mean anything until the end of the season.” 

Both of these athletes placed at the state tournament last year with Rogers taking 5th and Encarnacion reaching the final and finishing second. In addition, as sophomores both were fourth at the states. 

“My goal is to out wrestle every opponent I come across and finish out as strong as my ranking is,” said Encarnacion. “I work as hard as I can go to get better day by day. It feels good to be first but the end goal is to come out on top and remain undefeated.”