The Middle Township High School wrestling team enters the new year coming off a tournament championship.
The Panthers won the Palmyra Tournament for the second straight year last weekend, topping an eight-team field. Middle amassed 149 team points. Maple Shade was second at 133 and New Egypt placed third with 117 ½.
Senior Romeo Rodriguez (126), freshman David Giulian (170) and junior Karl Giulian (182) were each individual champions for Middle at the tournament.
For Rodriguez, the tournament championship was the third of his career. He improved to 12-0 on the season. In addition, David Giulian became the first Middle freshman to win a tournament since Ryan Goodman claimed first at the Marinelli Tournament at Egg Harbor Township in 2000. David Giulian improved to 6-1 for the season. And Karl Giulian upped his season record to 7-1.
Middle’s Kyle Matthews (195) and Marcus Hebron (220) each reached the finals and settled for second place. Evan Dugan (132) and Carson Haas (145) each placed third, and Alick Killian (120), Cole Miller (138) and Dawson Tallant (285) each finished fourth.
The tournament championship was the third in Middle’s program history. The team also won the Buc Classic at Red Bank Regional in 2013.
Middle returns to regular-season action this evening at Holy Spirit.