Methuen caps perfect season with win over Prep in dual meet state final
Tuesday, February, 21
By Dave Dyer
LOWELL — Methuen made perfection seem quite easy yesterday at the Division 1 dual-meet championships.
The Rangers completed an unblemished 20-0 season in
rousing fashion, first by defeating Springfield Central 33-22 in the
semifinals before disposing of nearby rival St. John's Prep 36-20 for
the state championship.
Neither meet was as close as the score indicates.
"I've been coaching for 27 years and to win this
tournament and be undefeated is something special," said Methuen coach
Bill James. "I didn't expect us to win (handily) like this, but the
kids really wrestled well today — everyone."
The state crown was indeed special. It was the first
dual-meet state title for the Rangers, capped their first unbeaten
season since 1984 and gave Methuen its first state title in any sport
since the girls basketball team won it all in 1999.
For senior captain C.J. Doherty, who is a three-time
Div. 1 individual state champion, the team crown created a new level of
"It's just awesome winning the whole thing," said
Doherty, who is currently 41-1 on the year. "To have the whole team
here makes this better than anything I've done (as an individual). It
makes us more of a family — it makes me happier."
Senior 120-pounder Sarith Has, who has been to the New England tournament twice and is 36-8 this year, was equally ecstatic.
"To win this as a team is so great," said Has. "Our
freshman year, we were 11-11 ... to come back and win this — I never
thought we'd do it."
The Rangers prevailed in both meets by combining the talents of their veteran stars with several unsung contributors.
Unbeaten 113-pounder Christian Monserrat (36-0) had
a major decision against Springfield Central, for example, and his pin
against St. John's Prep started a string of eight straight wins and a
lead which would not be relinquished. Doherty had a technical fall and
a major decision and Paul Sughrue had a 12-2 major decision over
standout St. John's sophomore Jared Costa after dropping his first
match of the year, 10-8 in overtime against Springfield Central's
Also, Has and late-season standout Jack Khoury both had two wins.
"Jack Khoury really has surprised me this year and has helped out the team a lot," said Doherty.
It was the final win against St. John's however,
that illustrated how effectively the Rangers developed into a
Anthony Andronaco captured his second decision of
the day at 132, Jason Pendergast capped his career off nicely with a
solid 8-2 decision at 138 and, in perhaps the performance which dashed
any hope that St. John's had of a comeback, Ryan Savastano recorded a
third-period pin at 152.
Even without winning a match, 170-pounder Giovanni
Rivera was a solid contributor. By only losing his match against St.
John's to Andover's David Kou by a 1-0 score, he clinched the title for
"I didn't even know it until I came off the mat and
the coach said 'nice going, you won it for us,' " said Rivera. "I
wasn't as mad about losing my match after that."
After Methuen wrapped it up, 220-pounder Paul
Tomacchio gave the Rangers their ninth win of the night with a
hard-earned 1-0 decision.
"We knew coming into the year, we had a shot at this," said James. "But it wasn't easy and I give the kids all the credit."
106: Louis Bornstein (SJP) major dec. Cuong Nguyen 9-1; 113: Christian Monserrat (M) pin Rich Glazier 3:02; 120: Sarith Has (M) dec. D.J. Lemieux 4-1; 126: Paul Sughrue (M) major dec. Jared Costa 12-2; 132: Anthony Andronaco (M) dec. Micah Anderle 6-4; 138: Jason Pendergast (M) dec. James Smith 8-2; 145: C.J. Doherty (M) major dec. Jaime Morey 9-1; 152: Ryan Savastano (M) pin V.J. Montillaro 4:59; 160: Jack Khoury (M) major dec. Joel Aviles 9-0; 170: David Kou (SJP) dec. Giovanni Rivera 1-0; 182: Ian Butterbrodt (SJP) major dec. Mike Mouawad 14-0; 195: James Ingemi (SJP) dec. Mike Golio 8-4; 220: Paul Tomachio (M) dec. Jon Polansky 1-0; HVY: Corey Jean-Jacques (SJP) pin Anthony Giorgio :58