Thursday, April 17, 2014
By Steve Craig firstname.lastname@example.org
SANFORD — Noble’s Joe Grenier was looking forward to his 160-pound final Saturday at the Spartan Wrestling Tournament when he realized he’d already been at War Memorial Gymnasium for more than 12 hours.
“A lot of wrestling is how much you can endure, not just on the mat, but just hanging around all day at these long tournaments,” Grenier said.
Normally a two-day tournament, the Spartan was condensed to one day, with championship bouts (run simultaneously with consolation finals and fifth-place matches) starting shortly after 9 p.m.
It was 9:46 p.m. when Grenier stepped onto the mat to face Greg Cassella of Portland. Grenier had already upset two-time state champ Jackson Howarth of Marshwood in the semifinals, winning a grueling 7-5 match.
Grenier said his plan for the final was similar: last as long as necessary.
“Noble wrestling is known for going the full six minutes if that’s what it takes,” Grenier said.
Instead, Grenier pinned Cassella in 70 seconds.
“The (list of) kids Joe beat to win this tournament was more impressive than any of the tournaments he’s won before,” Noble Coach Kip DeVoll said.
Marshwood won the team title, beating Timberlane of Plaistow, N.H., 219.5 to 191.0.
The Hawks had already started to make up a four-point deficit entering the championship and consolation finals when Noble’s Otto Keisker pinned Timberlane’s Dan Scalzo in 1:22 to win the 145-pound final. Scalzo reacted with an expletive, drawing a flagrant misconduct (3-point penalty) and an ejected from the tournament, meaning an additional loss of the 24 points Scalzo had earned.
Noble finished third with 164.5 points, followed by Rhode Island squads Cumberland (152.0) and North Providence (144.0). Massabesic was sixth with 142 and boasted two individual champs in Zac Richard at 152 pounds and Mike Risti at 220.
Risti, a junior, was coming off his 100th career win in the semifinals.
“It feels pretty good, especially knowing there’s still plenty of time left in the season,” Risti said.
Marshwood had three individual champions: veteran standouts Cody Hughes at 170 (a 19-2 technical fall in the final) and Brett Gerry at 182 (pin over Trevor Henschel of Fryeburg), and freshman 120-pounder Bradley Beaulieu.
Beaulieu beat Timberlane’s Tyler Fitzpatrick 6-1 in the final after winning his semifinal with a third-period pin against Cody Beaudette of Cumberland, R.I. He was named the tournament’s outstanding wrestler.
“Cody and Brett, you know they’re going to do well. Brad, he’s starting to make a name for himself, too,” Marshwood Coach Matt Rix said.
In the first championship bout, Portland’s 106-pound senior, Kidayer Aljubyly, aggravated an upper arm muscle injury but persevered to take a 1-0 win against Kevin Morris of Tyngsboro, Mass.
Caleb Austin of Mountain Valley (113) and Andrew Lyman of Fryeburg (285) also won titles.Steve Craig can be reached at 791-6413 or at:email@example.comTwitter: SteveCCraig