By Paul Schofield and Bill West| Tuesday, Feb. 18, 2014, 10:03 p.m.
Hempfield senior Joey Alessandro (31-5) is ranked third at 138 pounds by the Tribune-Review entering the Class AAA section tournaments this weekend. He finished second in the 138-pound weight class at the Westmoreland County Coaches Association tournament earlier this season after a 6-2 loss to Franklin Regional's Mike Kemerer. Alessandro, who has 111 career wins, finished third at the King of the Mountain and Powerade tournaments.
“I think just putting more time in and having extra workouts have contributed to my success,” Alessandro said. “I have also been getting stronger physically and mentally, as well.”
What are your college plans for next year?
I'm wrestling next year at Seton Hill. I want to major in accounting. Their coach was recruiting me hard. I like the coach and the program they are running up there. I like working with numbers and I'm pretty good with math.
How does it feel to reach the 100-win plateau for your career?
It was pretty difficult because I was out for 11 months after my knee injury during my sophomore year. I came back a little hungrier to get that milestone.
What did you learn during that time when you were injured?
I learned to really not take anything for granted. It makes me give 100 percent whenever you can and do the best you can.
What is your mindset going into the individual portion of the season?
Really, just knowing it's my last go at it makes me want to place high up in the state tournament, which is my ultimate goal.
What do you need to do to accomplish that?
I just really need to wrestle hard through the whole tournament and stay consistent through my matches.
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