In a drawn-out match that pushed into overtime, Co-Captain Pierce Bausano ’18 made a critical pin over a strong BB&N opponent to win the quarterfinal round of the 182-pound male bracket of Saturday’s Northern New England Invitational Tournament. After going on to take second place individually at the meet, which was held at Hyde in Bath, Maine, Bausano would help lead the team to a third place tie with Hyde, out of 16 competing.
According to Marisol Nugent ’20, Bausano won his quarterfinal match by tiring his opponent out.
“It was obvious that the other kid had gassed, and Pierce was still working. It was a great display of perseverance,” Nugent said.
Eamon Garrity-Rokous ’20 wrote in an email to The Phillipian, “We were leading in team score for virtually the entire tournament right up until the very end, although we couldn’t seal the deal at the end of Northerns, and ended up tying for third place in team score. I think we performed well, both individually and as a team.”
Andover’s wrestlers provided strong performances across the board. Garrity-Rokous placed second in the 152-pound weight class, while Nick Masri ’19 placed second and Jack O’Neil ’19 placed fifth in the 132-pound category. Pablo Sanchez ’19 made it to the semifinals of the 195-pound weight class, earning fourth place, while Adam Cohen ’18 earned a second place finish in the 220-pound weight class.
Nugent said that the numerous second place and fourth place finishes played a big role in improving the team score. The large number of Andover wrestlers competing as well as the ability to enter more than one wrestler at a certain weight class played a big role in this.
Nugent herself also provided a highlight performance. She was awarded the title of Outstanding Wrestler after winning all three of her matches, pinning each of her opponents to capture the individual title in the 120-pound weight category.
Garrity-Rokous believes Nugent’s pin in the finals to be an especially impressive moment from Saturday. He added, “I am especially proud of her for this achievement, as both a Middlesex and a Hyde wrestler were easily in contention for that award, having pinned their way through the finals.”
The team is benefiting from entering into a more competitive mindset, according to O’Neil.
“It’s at this point in the season where the team really starts to come together and compete as a group, and everyone was focused on wrestling tough against strong opponents,” said O’Neil.
Saturday’s tournament provided a strong preview of the talent at the New England Interscholastic Wrestling Association Prep Tournament hosted by Phillips Exeter Academy this Saturday, as well as the New England Tournament on February 16 and February 17.