NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. – Alex DeLaCruz was looking forward to wrestling in the Ted Murphy Shoreline Classic Saturday because he wanted to clear up a misconception.
The Ossining junior said opponents considered him a one-move wrestler on offense so DeLaCruz set out to prove his opponents wrong.
Once the 120-pound final was done, DeLaCruz proved his point with a pin of Commack’s Mike D’Angelo 37 seconds into the second period at New Rochelle High School.
This was DeLaCruz’s first appearance at Shoreline and he was named the Sandy Zuzolo award winner. He had three pins, including a 20-second finisher in his first match, and a technical fall.
“I didn’t stick with one move today,” DeLaCruz said. “I was working on my moves today because I wanted to show my opponents that I had more than one move.”
DeLaCruz did his homework before facing D’Angleo. He watched D’Angelo’s semifinal match against Pearl River’s John Muldoon.
“I saw that he was good on bottom and top so I wanted to ride him as long as I could, then cut him and take him down,” DeLaCruz said. “He was leaving his lead leg, or left leg, out there so I was focusing on the left leg.”
DeLaCruz needed just five seconds to record the first takedown of the match. He would close out the first period with a 6-5 lead, but DeLaCruz was not happy. He surrendered a takedown in the period’s final seconds.
“I was surprised at myself that I allowed it to be that close,” DeLaCruz said of the score after the first period.
DeLaCruz was in the midst of securing a takedown in front of his coaches when he heard their instructions.
“They told me his head was hanging so when I caught it, I locked it up in a cradle and that was my main focus,” DeLaCruz said. “This means a lot to me to beat the wrestler who beat Muldoon, but I know I still have a lot more to work on.”