January 5

High school notebook: Massabesic wrestlers regain form

After a subpar meet a week earlier, the Mustangs fare well at the Spartan tournament.

From staff reports

Massabesic High wrestling coach Rick DeRosier smiled when he was told his team looked a lot tougher in just one week’s time and that several of the Mustangs’ credited him for amping up the practice intensity.

“Just a bit,” DeRosier said.

Two Saturdays ago at the Noble Invitational, Massabesic – a team expected to challenge two-time defending Class A champion Marshwood for this year’s state title – finished sixth. For most teams that would be a strong effort. But particularly for Massabesic standouts Zac Richard and Mike Risti, who had unexpected early trips to the consolation bracket, it was a subpar tournament.

At the Spartan Wrestling Tournament in Sanford this past Saturday, however, both Richard (152 pounds) and Risti (220) walked away as weight-class champions.

Massabesic was again sixth, but considering the top five included out-of-state powers Timberlane of Plaistow, N.H., and Rhode Island entries Cumberland and North Providence, it was a much sweeter finish.

“Me and Risti and a couple of others, we went to the semis at Noble, and we all should have won and we didn’t. This week we worked our (butts) off,” Richard said.

Tyler Everett, a senior who won his division at Noble, reached the final in his quest to become a two-time Spartan champ before losing for the first time this season, a rugged 10-4 decision against Derek Bohle of Timberlane.

Risti, a junior who had wrestled at 195 the previous week, recorded his 100th career victory in the semifinals and rolled through the tourney with four pins – the first three coming in less than 50 seconds each.

“The coaches have really been on us a lot harder in practice,” Risti said.

Also placing in the top four for Massabesic were Trevor Walton (fourth, 170) and Trevor Burns (third, with an emphatic pin in the consolation final, at 182).

Everett said the Spartan tourney is not a tell-all about a team’s fortunes at the regional and state level, but “with a lot of good out-of-state teams, if you’re doing well here you’re doing good.”

BOYS’ BASKETBALL

With the halfway point of the regular season nearing, the Heal point standings are taking shape.

In Western Class A, Bonny Eagle sits in the No. 1 spot with an 8-0 record. Falmouth (6-1) and Portland (7-0) are tied for second. Resurgent Cheverus and Deering are next.

In Western Class B, Morse holds the top spot, followed by Greely, Spruce Mountain, Yarmouth and Cape Elizabeth.

In Western Class C, the top five are Maranacook, Dirigo, Waynflete, Winthrop and Wiscasset.

Forest Hills is ranked No. 1 in Western Class D, followed by Valley, Greenville, North Haven and Hyde.

A couple upcoming games to note are Bonny Eagle and Portland on Jan. 14 at St. Joseph’s College and Greely and Falmouth on Saturday.

To accommodate what is expected to be a large crowd, the Bonny Eagle-Portland game was moved to St. Joseph’s. The Bonny Eagle gym has stands on only one side.

After opening with seven straight wins, Morse suffered its first loss of the season Saturday, 69-53 to Maranacook.

AFTER BEATING Windham Friday night, Westbrook was back in action Saturday, hosting Noble. The Blue Blazes couldn’t sustain their momentum as they lost to the Knights, 68-45.

It has and likely will continue to be that kind of up-and-down season for the Blue Blazes (2-7). A Western Class A tournament berth is a long shot.

(Continued on page 2)

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