Andover Wrestling Bounces Back After Loss to Top Team

After his victory, Gordon Paiva ’20 allowed another wrestler to borrow his headgear, and was subsequently awarded Wrestler of the Week on Wednesday against Worcester Academy. Andover Wrestling went on to defeat Worcester 63-12, bringing its record to 2-7.

On Wednesday, Andover maintained a high level of focus from the beginning in order to secure a win over Worcester, according to David Wang ‘20.

“We did a very good job today at Worcester. Everyone was checked in right from the get-go and we were able to execute. Almost everybody was able to get a dub. One thing we were able to improve was our mindset going into the game. Unlike last week, where we seemed kind of sluggish and dazed, we were focused throughout the entire meet and the results translated. One thing we need to focus on is our technical aspects, especially our sprawls,” said Wang

Even though Worcester was only able to compete in eight out of the fourteen weight classes, due to its limited lineup, Andover won seven out of the eight varsity matches, according to Riggs McGrath ‘21

Andover worked diligently and persistently to secure its win, according to McGrath.

“{There was} some really aggressive wrestling today. Many of our wrestlers were fighting really hard for pins throughout their matches, many were successful. We need to continue to work on our basic moves and movement, which give us a strong base to wrestle off of,” wrote McGrath in an email to The Phillipian.

Earlier in the week at Tabor Academy, Calvin Yang ‘21 secured one of the two victories in Andover Wrestling’s meet against first seed Belmont Hill on Saturday. Despite falling to Belmont Hill, 69-6, Andover came back to challenge Roxbury Latin, who barely edged Andover out in a 32-33 loss. The other two matches scheduled were cancelled due to weather.

Despite its loss to Belmont Hill, Andover wrestled close matches and the meet allowed the team to assess its strengths and weaknesses, according to Ellerman Mateo ‘21.

Mateo said, “Okay, so [against] Belmont Hill, we kind of got destroyed, but we did have a lot of close matches, and it showed us… our strengths.Our coach told us that [even] the Belmont Coach was surprised that we actually gave them some resistance. I mean even though we only got two victories, we had some matches where it was very close, especially Alex [El Adl ‘19], [who] barely lost by one point.”

Competing against the number one team in New England, showed Andover where it needs improvement entering the postseason, according to Matt Suri ‘21.

Suri wrote in an email to The Phillipian, “Our first meet was against Belmont Hill, the number one wrestling team in New England… They highlighted our weaknesses as a team and what we should focus on working on going into the postseason.”

Entering its match against Roxbury Latin, Andover was still shaken from its prior matches resulting in a close loss, according to Mateo.

“When we faced Roxbury Latin, we did a lot better but we still lost by a point, but I guess after having a crushing defeat from Belmont Hill, we were kind of down. Even Coach Gorham said, ‘You guys kind of looked scared, you guys were a little hesitant, you guys weren’t sure like how Latin was compared to Belmont Hill,’ but we ended having some pretty good victories.” stated Mateo.

Despite two losses on Saturday, Andover moved well on the bottom, but needs to work on its execution and consistency, according to Suri and Mateo.

“Against The Roxbury Latin School we faced a team at our level. After a hard fought meet we lost by one team point. One thing we’ve been working on is getting in closer on our shots and movement on bottom. At the meet we were able to perform well in those areas. We have to work on completing our moves and executing hard, because our execution was sometimes week Belmont Hill was able to capitalize from our mistakes,” said Suri, in an email to The Phillipian.

Andover will head to the Bidstrup Duals this Saturday.