In the first ever girls division in the National Prep Wrestling Championships, Andover Wrestling Co-Captain Marisol Nugent ’20 pinned all three of her opponents, including the number two ranked girls wrestler in the nation, en route to a first place finish in the 142-lb weight class. After tearing her ACL last year, Nugent worked her way back to become Andover’s second ever wrestler to win the National Prep Championships.
According to Nugent, all of her hard work and training paid off when she was able to lift the first-place trophy.
“The girl that I wrestled with in the finals, I’ve been trying to get a match up with for the past year and a half so I was waiting for that and trained really hard for it. When I tore my ACL last year, I was pretty determined that I was going to come back and win a National title a year later and so it was a good feeling to succeed,” said Nugent.
Head Coach Kassie Archambault ’06 added, “Marisol has had her sights set on a national championship for over a year. It was what she focused on while recovering from her ACL tear, which ended her season early last year. Since she had already pinned the number one seed in a previous tournament, we knew this was an attainable goal… She got the job done, and upset the number one seed in the finals to become champion,”
According to Nugent, the addition of a girls division was an initiative she helped fight for, believing that it’s a step in the right direction for the future of girls wrestling.
“I have spoken to a lot of people in the past couple years to get the division approved… I mean it’s a big deal because this year, there was a relatively small turnout but I think if you build it and give girls more wrestling opportunities, the numbers will go up within the next couple years,” said Nugent.
At the tournament, which took place last Friday and Saturday at Lehigh University, teammates Colin Nugent ’23 and Nick Buehler ’21 also competed for Andover, falling in the round of 16 and round of 32, respectively.
According to Buehler, Colin Nugent’s strong performance against some of the top wrestlers in the country was proof that he will be able to grow into a top wrestler in his time at Andover.
“Colin walked into National Prep as a freshman and butted heads with some really good wrestlers, and came out 2-2; he’s done amazingly and I’m really excited to see him work in the next couple years. All of us think he’s got a very bright future with National Preps,” said Buehler.
“Colin Nugent was seeded 12th for his weight class in the high school division. For a lot of wrestlers, even winning one or two matches is a big deal at a national tournament. Colin won his first match with a quick pin… He made it to the round of 16. He has tremendous potential to do well at this tournament in the future,” added Archambault.
Ending the year with a strong performance at Nationals, the team looks to ride that momentum into next year, according to Buehler.
“As a closer to the season, National Prep gave me something bigger to work towards in the off season.. Plus, we came out of Nationals with the first National Prep champion in the brand-new women’s division of National Prep, Captain Marisol Nugent. That’s a really nice note for the team to go out on,” said Buehler.