2015-03-03 / Sports

Athlete of the Week

It’s back to wrestling for this week’s Athlete of the Week, because the honoree, Sidney senior Austin Dean, won the state Division II 285-pound championship bout on Saturday. Our area has not had a state champion in recent years.

Austin, who was the top seed in the weight class, finished the season with a 34-0 record with a 5-3 overtime victory over the Section III champion, second-seeded Dan Appley of the merged Herkimer/Sauquoit Valley team. Not surprisingly for an athlete who has earned two state Class C first team honors in football, he made a football move, tackling his foe for the winning takedown.

Last year, when Austin won the Section IV championship at the same weight, he finished sixth in the state tourney. In his four-year wrestling career, he has won three Class C titles.

Austin finished his career with a 121-17 record, including 82 pins. In his senior season, he pinned 25 of his 34 opponents, including two in the state tourney.

“We have had several state champions, but I think Austin is the first undefeated state champion we have ever had in the heavyweight class,” commented his coach, Tim Stafford. “Austin weighs in at 247 to 250 pounds, so he is faster than a lot of heavyweight. His speed and his agility have helped him a lot.”

Austin expects to make football his college sport, but has not chosen where he will go. “I think he is leaning toward (SUNY) Morrisville,” Stafford stated.

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