By MICHAEL LETENDRE
The Connecticut Wrestling Online weekly top-10 poll has been a very good indicator – as it is every season – of correctly gauging and recognizing the state’s best squads.
Coaches and media members help to put the poll together and every week and it’s interesting to see what teams float into and out of the top-10.
And with the CIAC championships come and gone, did the squads at the top of the most recent poll win state championships?
Did any surprise teams punch through who weren’t in that exclusive top ten?
Or did some squads falter despite a lofty pre-tournament ranking?
Well, there were a couple no-brainers at the top of the poll.
Danbury and Bristol Eastern were both challenged at the most recent CIAC championships but the squads pulled off Class LL and Class L titles, respectively.
Those two teams have been 1-2 in the Connecticut Wrestling Online weekly top-10 poll the entire season and showed why they were rated that highly during the postseason.
New Milford, ranked third in the poll last week, finished third in the Class L’s which was a bit of a shocker as several individuals though the unit would be a bigger threat to the Lancers’ back-to-back title prospects.
Fairfield Warde, the fourth place squad in the poll, finished as the runner-up at LL while Southington (fifth) earned third place at the Class LL event.
Towards the bottom of the top-10 poll, No. 9 Montville placed just fifth at the Class S event and No. 10 Hand of Madison had a fifth place showing at the Ls.
So, was there another team out of that top-10 who should have earned a spot within those upper rankings?
Well, Foran might claim to a top-10 spot in the final poll – which will be released after the State Open – as the squad ran away with the Class M title.
And then Windham took home the Class S championship but both the Whippets and Foran were ranked among the next five squads in the state so the voters saw these teams as contenders as well.
At No. 16, Wilton was only the ninth best squad at the Class L event while Gilbert of Winsted was just one spot behind in the poll and was the runner’s up in the Class S clash with an amazing showing.
The voters will certainly take the State Open results into account for the final poll of the year and there might be a little shifting in the top-10 before things are said and done.
Here’s a quick look at the last Connecticut Wrestling Online weekly top-10 poll and how each team fared at the championship level:
Team Record CIAC Tournament Finish
- Danbury 11-3 Won the Class LL Championship by 74 points
- Eastern (1) 15-0 Won the Class L Championship by 34.5 points
- New Milford 8-1 Took 3rd place at Class L’s (173 points)
- Fairfield Warde 17-1 Runner-up at Class LL (200 points)
- Southington 13-2 Tied for 3rd in Class LL (175 points)
- Xavier 12-5 Runner-up at the L’s (196.5 points)
- Killingly 31-2 Runner-up at the M’s (190 points)
- Trumbull 26-3 Third place at Class LL (175 points)
- Montville 17-2 Placed 5th at Class S’s (131 points)
- Hand 17-3 Took 5th at Class L’s (129.5 points)
Other notables that weren’t in the Top 10 in the poll last week but placed 11th through 17th…
Team/Record Tournament Finish
- New Canaan (12-3) Placed 4th at the Class L’s (163.5 points)
- Foran (29-8) Ran away with Class M title (236 points)
- East Hartford (16-2) 5th place finish in Class LL (117 points)
- Windham (14-4) Class S champs (190 points)
- Simsbury (13-4) 6th place at Class L’s (112 points)
- Wilton (9-4) 9th place showing at Class L’s (100.5 points)
- Gilbert (14-3) Class S runner-up (155.5 points)