Here at Hopatcong High School athletes come near and far but it’s not every day we come across the next Joe Martinek, Zach Rey, or Dylan Capwell. When it comes to Soph. Anthony Mastroeni, he is a diamond in the rough for Hopatcong’s 1-22 wrestling squad.
Ever since Mastroeni was young, he has been putting work onto the mat. He was always one to stand out among the rest as a gifted athlete who has the skill and mindset of a true champion. Overcoming many hurdles, such as a serious injury like an ACL tear and problems with his nose this year, he has made a name for himself as a young athlete with genuine potential. He consistently pushes himself when it comes to conditioning. There is never a moment when he doesn’t give it his 100%, even when that conditioning comes moments before a match.
On February 27th, Anthony competed in the NJSIAA Region 1 tournament. He battled his way to the 132lbs final, facing off against Brandon Paetzell of Phillipsburg. Unfortunately, he was unable to take home the championship for our school. Anthony suffered a loss to Paetzell in a 15-2 major decision. It was the third Region 1 title for Paetzell, who is ranked No. 5 in the state for his weight on NJ.com. It was also Paetzell’s 100th victory.
This loss only goes to show Anthony’s potential as an elite wrestler. Doing what he does as a sophomore is a phenomenal feat. Imagine him as a senior with more learning experience and training! One day Anthony even hopes to take his skills beyond high school onto the collegiate level with possibly a scholarship.
Keep that dream alive and fresh Anthony because it seems you are well on the right track to making that happen.