Anthony closes out Harrison’s Fiacco lineage
by Carlton D. White
cwhite@mdjonline.com
January 16, 2013 12:42 AM | 2517 views | 1 1 comments | 14 14 recommendations | email to a friend | print
01-10-12 -- Anthony Fiacco 02 -- Harrison senior Anthony Fiacco, 18, is photographed in the wrestling room at the school. STAFF/EMILY BARNES
01-10-12 -- Anthony Fiacco 02 -- Harrison senior Anthony Fiacco, 18, is photographed in the wrestling room at the school. STAFF/EMILY BARNES
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KENNESAW — The Fiacco family has been involved with Harrison’s wrestling program since the 1999-2000 season. Since then, the Fiaccos’ story has been told much like a three-act play or a movie trilogy, with coach Tom Fiacco as the de facto director.

The story begins with Tom’s eldest son, Nick, who placed fourth in the state at 140 pounds as a freshman in 2001. The next year, however, a torn labrum in his left shoulder derailed what would have likely been a stellar high school career.

The second act continued with Ben, who finished third in the state at 145 pounds in 2002 before taking home three consecutive state championships — at 152 in 2003 and ’04, and 160 in ’05 — to end his high school career.

The final chapter is taking place now with Anthony, the last of the Fiacco brothers.

The 5-foot-9 senior has also had a successful tenure at Harrison. He’s a two-time region champion, with titles at 135 and 152 pounds in 2011 and 2012, respectively. He also finished fifth in the state at 135 in 2011 and was fourth at 152 last season.

“I know that my brothers left some big shoes to fill,” Anthony said, “but, for me, it’s just nice to feel what they experienced as students and wrestlers at Harrison.

“Originally, I wanted to keep up with my brothers and do better than they did. Now, I’m just self-motivated to do well for myself. They’ve moved on, and I’ve grown to love the sport more for me than for anybody else since my junior year.”

Anthony also enjoyed watching his brothers wrestle at Harrison when he was younger, and as everyone has grown older, reminiscing about the experiences they shared as Hoyas is always a topic of conversation.

Nick, an aspiring doctor, plans to spend his residency at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Bethesda, Md., Ben continued his wrestling career at North Carolina where he was a four-year starter and all-Atlantic Coast Conference selection in 2007.

“It’s nice when they come home,” said Anthony, who is currently 38-2 on the season with 24 pins. “We talk about Harrison wrestling and other stories. It’s good that I get to do what they’ve done and live up to what they’ve taught me.”

Tom Fiacco took over the Harrison wrestling team prior to the start of the 2007-08 season, but he and his wife had been involved with the program in different capacities dating back to 1999-2000.

“The program was hitting rock bottom after Ben graduated, and we wanted there to be a program for Anthony, so I took over,” Tom said. “This will be my final year coaching, and it’s nice that I was able to do that with my son. I’ve been a dad and a coach for a long time.”

Anthony has also enjoyed having his father as his coach and said he wouldn’t want it any other way.

“It’s been very beneficial having my dad as coach,” he said. “He’s been a huge part of the program as an assistant coach and now a head coach since I’ve been here. It’s been great having him to push me these past couple of years.”

Like Nick, Anthony also tore a labrum — in his right shoulder — his sophomore year. However, he still managed to place at state and continue with his wrestling career, which will end this season.

Like every wrestler, Anthony’s goal is to finish with a state championship, like Ben did.

“It’s extremely special to finish my career as the last Fiacco at Harrison and get a state championship as a senior, like my brother,” Anthony said, “but I’ll remember the journey with my brothers and my dad through this school.

“It would be a great moment to do well and finish strong.”
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McEachern Fan
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January 16, 2013
The Fiaccos have been a great example of both sportsmanship and good students. Even though my family was involved in wrestling at McEachern and always wanted to defeat any Harrison wrestler, we knew that to beat a Fiacco was going to be a tough problem. Good luck to the family.
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