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Hayden Head wins NYSPHSAA title bout

Defeats Alex Soutiere in final

Beekmantown's Hayden Head has his arm raised as NYSPHSAA state champion at 285-lbs. Saturday, Feb. 25.

Beekmantown's Hayden Head has his arm raised as NYSPHSAA state champion at 285-lbs. Saturday, Feb. 25. Photo by Keith Lobdell.

— “I thought he was going to his back as soon as I saw that Hayden had him moving,” Eagles head coach Len Gadway said. “This is a great win for Hayden and for Beekmantown.”

For Head and Gadway, it was the first state championship.

“I am happy that we finally got one, but I am more happy for Hayden,” Gadway said.

“It’s an awesome feeling to be the first,” Head said. “Coach really helped bring this program along and he needed a state champion under his belt.”

In the quarterfinal round, Head faced seventh-seeded Dan Ognibene (Alexander, Section V). Head scored a takedown 15 seconds into the match and almost earned a pin in the period, but ended leading 5-1 heading into the second. Head then pulled further away in the second period, leading 9-2 in entering the third period, where he took down Ognibene for the pin 1:21 into the final period.

Head also went into the third period against his semifinal opponent, Matt Montesanti (Medina, Section VI). Head scored a takedown in the first period and a reversal along with a penalty point in the second to lead 5-0 heading into the final two minutes, starting the period in the top position and pinning Montesanti 18 seconds in.

Head entered the state tournament with a record of 37-2, having won his third straight sectional title to advance to the state championship tournament.

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