BEDFORD, N.Y. – Fox Lane senior Tommy Grippi is the third oldest among four wrestling brothers in the family, but now he owns family bragging rights.
Grippi closed out his outstanding career with a second consecutive Section 1 Division 1 wrestling title. He went on to finish fifth in the state in the 145-pound weight class, registering his 200th varsity win in his final match.
Based on his outstanding postseason, Grippi is The Bedford Daily Voice February Student-Athlete of the Month.
Grippi joined former teammate and good friend Steven Rodrigues, former Somers’ great Brian Realbuto and Beacon alumnus/sectional champ Ryan Tompkins as Section 1 wrestlers with 200 or more wins.
“That means a lot to me,” said Grippi of reaching 200 wins. “I wanted to have a lot of wins, but I never thought 200 was possible. It also means a lot because I joined Steven, Brian and Ryan and some really good wrestlers.
“I will always remember placing fifth in the state and the 200 wins because it means I am in the books for both accomplishments.”
Tommy Grippi surpassed older brothers Joey and Peter, a Springfield College senior and sophomore, respectively, in wins, and equaled Joey with two sectional titles. He also pointed out that of the three, he is the only Grippi brother to win his final high school match.
Fox Lane wrestling coach Anthony Rodrigues has witnessed Grippi’s emergence, especially the last two years.
“Tommy was a great leader on our team the past two years, especially this year with the young team we had,” Rodrigues said. “Tommy has raised the bar for all of our future wrestlers and he will be sorely missed by everyone in our program.”
Grippi’s leadership was vital this season after the graduation of Sam Speno, Matt Pasqualini, Giancarlo Morreale and Danny Ventura.
Grippi said he enjoyed his career and all of his teammates. He also credited former Fox Lane coach Joe Amuso and Rodrigues for his development.
“I have a great bond with Coach Amuso and ARod,” Grippi said. “I can’t thank both of them enough for what they have done for me over the years.”