MONROE — Already a three-time state champion wrestler for Central Academy of Technology and Arts, Kyle Montaperto is well established as one of the best to ever compete in his sport in Union County. The University of Virginia signee has a goal this season to become the first County wrestler to ever win four individual state championships.
The 132-pounder has an 18-0 record in 2021-22); he signed with Virginia in November.
In addition to his individual goals, Montaperto wants to help Central Academy win its third dual team title this season.
Montaperto hasn’t lost a match since his freshman season. His career record is 120-1 with a 99.2% winning percentage is easily the highest of any County wrestler who has ever reached 100 career wins.
He credits much of his success to Central Academy head coach Mike Jacobus, who guided the Cougars to back-to-back dual team state titles in 2019 and 2020.
“When I think about (Jacobus), he’s an all-around great guy,” Montaperto said. “In the wrestling room, he’s really good at motivating us to get going … He also holds us to a higher standard. He’s definitely helped me improve my wrestling without a doubt.”
Montaperto and teammates Aiden Curry (18-0) and Brady Ross (18-0) — who are also individual defending state champions — go to the C2X wrestling club, located in Fort Mill, S.C. He also gives credit to the academy and their staff for helping him develop as a person. After CATA practices, the wrestlers who go to C2X can get in another practice.
Montaperto glued himself to wrestling after he started watching Kyle Dake — a four-time NCAA Champion in four different weight classes at Cornell University in Ithica, N.Y. Dake has won three world titles in the Olympic Games.
Montaperto uses Dake’s accomplishments as fuel for his own success. “His style of wrestling really interested me, he’s super athletic, and I wanted to be like him,” Montaperto said.
Montaperto said he’s had the goal of being a four-time state champion for the past 12 years.
Before attending Central Academy, a magnet school, he wrestled at Marvin Ridge Middle School.
Kyle’s father, Mark Montaperto, describes him as a “great kid.”
“He has put in a lot of work to get into the University of Virginia,” Mark Montaperto said. “It’s a great opportunity for him to grow as a young man and into the man he wants to be.”