Andover Wrestling Wins Two, Loses One in Triple-Header

Against Exeter, Andover had pins from Riggs McGrath ’21, Co-Captain Eamon Garrity-Rokous ’20, Nick Buehler ’21,and Arnav Bhakta ’22.

Earning two pins and a technical fall, Colin Nugent ’23 defeated all three Class A opponents to aid in the team’s success in a triple header this past Saturday. Andover Wrestling beat Hyde 66-12, Deerfield 66-12, but eventually fell to Phillips Academy Exeter 42-29, putting the team’s record at 2-1 for the day. The team’s overall record now stands at 7-4 and 5-1 in Class A.

According to Co-Captain Marisol Nugent ’20, the team was aggressive but ultimately fell to Exeter in some surprising defeats.

“I think against Deerfield it went pretty well. I felt like we were pretty dominant on our feet for the most part, which is always important in wrestling, being able to be aggressive on your feet. We lost against Exeter, which was tough, but we lost a lot of winnable matches. I would attribute this to the team not being able to move on bottom—at the end of the day, that’s what caused us to lose some of those close matches.”

The team’s energy stood out from its competition, according to Co-Captain Eamon Garrity-Rokous ’20 and Colin Nugent.

“I’d say [the energy] was very high. There was a lot of vigor throughout the matches, a lot of vigor in the warmups. We kept a very high energy. We were very excited at the prospect of beating Exeter for the first time in a long while. And I felt that, especially when you could see our bench versus Exeter’s bench and how much more excited we were about each match. There was a really clear distinction between our two teams, and I think that was inherent in our matches not just against Exeter,” said Garrity-Rokous.

Colin Nugent added, “It was really lively, it was pretty hype. There were a lot of people in the stands. We had a lot of Andover people too, it wasn’t just Exeter, so we had a lot of people bringing the hype.”

The team looks to work on its constant movement on the mat and technique in order to match the level of higher-ranked teams, said Garrity-Rokous.

“I still think we failed in a lot of technical areas like sprawling and getting to our shots. We shot from distance way too much. I think working on our defense, especially working from the bottom, keeping our feet moving and hips moving on the bottom will be crucial come postseason,” said Garrity-Rokous.

Going into the latter half of its season, Marisol Nugent hopes the team will be able to be more confident against stronger teams and learn from its teammates and opponents alike.

Nugent said, “We have (Northfield Mount Hermon) this coming weekend who are defending champions, so I think that match will be challenging. One of the things I say when wrestling these types of teams is to watch some of their kids wrestle. Just noticing how different teams have different styles and being able to take it as a learning opportunity is key.”

Andover will travel to Tabor on Saturday where the team will compete in another triple header against Avon, Loomis Chaffee, and NMH.