Nick Mauriello's first trip to New York State championships may not result in a title, but a battle for third place certainly a personal victory a year after his life-or-death battle with MRSA.
Newsday reports that Mauriello, a senior at , has the chance to place third in the 132-pound weight class at the New York State wrestling championship this weekend.
Mauriello won his first preliminary match over Brendan Morgan from upstate Columblia High School, 4-3, according to Newsday.
"The first match is always the toughest," Mauriello said to Newsday. "It doesn't matter what the score is, as long as you win."
The 17-year-old then lost his quarterfinal match against No.2 seeded Nick Kelley of Shenendehowa High School, 5-0. Newsday reports that Kelley had previously beat Mauriello, 10-4, at the Eastern State tournament earlier in the season.
Mauriello secured himself an All-State honors after beating Curtis Barney of Canton in a technical fall. He is scheduled to wrestle for third place at 10 a.m.
In 2011, Mauriello was unable to compete in for a spot in the New York State championships after It developd into a secondary infection Lemierre's Syndrome, a rare but deadly bacterial infection in the mouth or throat spread through the circulatory system. Mauriello spent 19 days in Stony Brook University's Children Hospital.
Mauriello has battled his way back onto the mats, going 39-2 this season. He won the Spring Gardner Tournament, Massapequa Holiday Tournament on Dec. 29, 2011, and took second place in Eastern States.
Mauriello took theand Most Oustanding Wrestler title in January. He ended the season ranked No. 1 on Long Island in the 132-pound weight class.