In a span of one year, wrestling freestyle Brian Realbuto went from a beginner to a New York State champion. Realbuto recently won the 145-pound state freestyle title, going 7-0, and qualifing for the Junior National Championships in Fargo, N.D., July 15-23.
The junior from Somers and 2011 New York State Public High School large-school 135-pound champion is one of only two Section 1 wrestlers to qualify. He will be joined in Fargo by good friend and work-out partner, Steve Rodrigues of Fox Lane, the 140-pound titlist.
I became more serious about it this year, said Realbuto, who finished fourth in freestyle states last year.
Realbuto, a 2009 high school state champ, split his time training both folk style, which is wrestled in high school, and freestyle. One major difference between the two is that the score reverts back to zero at the conclusion or each period.
The biggest difference is your top and bottom wrestling, Realbuto said. Your takedowns can be anywhere from one to three points. Its also more of a strategic match and adds different levels.
During the semi-final, Realbuto suffered a hyper extended left elbow, but he still went on to win, despite the injury that left him with only one arm to wrestle. I couldnt move my left arm so I was holding it back, keeping it away and wrestling to my right side, he said.
I am looking forward to Fargo and competing with Steven.
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