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Brian Realbuto Upset in Eastern States Final

Brian Realbuto accepted his second-place medal, shook hands and had a brief conversation with Dylan Palacio of Long Beach, Long Island, the wrestler who handed Realbuto his first loss of the season.

Palacio, the second seed, surprised the top-seeded Realbuto, 8-5 in the 152-pound final at the 10th annual Eastern States Wrestling Classic Saturday.

It was Realbuto’s third consecutive Eastern States final and second runner-up finish. He won the 2011 132-pound title.

His younger brother, Dylan, finished second at 120 and Dom DeVita took third at 220.

“I felt I wasn’t as good conditionally as I should have been,” said Realbuto, now 30-1 on the season and 260-12 in his varsity career. “Going into the second period, I was gassed. I only took two shots in the third period and I was down by a point.”

Realbuto said he was not feeling well going into the tournament, but blamed himself for the loss.

“I did everything I normally do to prepare for this tournament but you have to get yourself in the best physical shape you can even when you are sick,” Realbuto said. “This is my fault. I have to be ready to wrestle a six-minute match.”

Realbuto accepted the loss and put it in perspective.

“This is a good tournament that will get me prepared for when it really counts in February,” said Realbuto, in reference to the New York State Wrestling Championships.

DeVita had an excellent tournament. Seeded seventh, DeVita lost in the quarterfinals, then won consecutive consolation matches in overtime, both 2-1 scores, over Edgemont’s Danny Kornberg and Queensbury’s Dave Pontiff. DeVita followed these with a 4-3 ride-out of New Rochelle’s Tyler Lilly in a consolation semifinal. These two could very well meet for the Section 1 Division I title in February.

The Somers senior concluded his day with a 3-1 win over fourth-seeded John Babson in the third-place match. DeVita opened the second period with an escape, then took Babson down for a 3-0 lead.

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