Raiders sweep Wayland tourney; may be team-to-beat in M.L.
Published in the December 23, 2016 edition
By JENNIFER GENTILE
MELROSE — Just a few matches into their season, the 2016 MHS wrestling team has proven to be a contender in Div. 3, not to mention the Middlesex League, after sweeping the Wayland Tournament on Sunday, Dec. 18.
Melrose (3-1-1) took the longtime annual event (50 years and running) for the first time that head coach Jim Blieler and assistant Tim Morris can recall. “We don’t remember ever winning this tournament, so to do it on Sunday was pretty special,” said Blieler. “The kids were awesome.”
How strong was Melrose that day? The Red Raiders crowned four champions, including newcomers Hunter Adrian (106), Sean Hebert (120), returnees Mike Calvert (145) and Antonio DiFronzo (195), along with several second place finishes. Melrose sent 8 wrestlers to the finals on Sunday while 11 of the 12 grapplers competing placed. Overall, Melrose collected 235 points, ahead of second place Wayland with 185.
Victory by Melrose began with Hunter Adrian, who pinned Ryan Parmenter of Pembroke, then Sean Hebert who had a decision over Joe Tolson. Mike Calvert had a decision over Zack Fina of Greater Lowell and Antonio DiFronzo pinned Nick Shares of Beverly.
Strong second place finishes were claimed by Pat Whelan, Jake Fortier, Collin Casey and Steve MacIntosh who faced a tough Ramazon Attasour of Wayland. Iasac Siede placed third in the 170, Cam Rosie fourth in the 160 and Mandip Singh fifth in the 152.
Blieler has a very young team who already show signs of staying power. While Adrian, Herbert and Macintosh have years of success ahead of them, Blieler also predicts great things from newcomers Iasac Siede and Victor Rodriguez. “Isaac is going to surprise a lot of people. And Victor is a rookie and getting better each day.”
In their early season everyone on the team has enjoyed wins and much of that effort was done against Wilmington, whom Melrose dominated on Dec. 14 in a 42-6 home win. Other victories include efforts against Beverly, Westwood and Wilmington.
Competing for Melrose this season are: Hunter Adrian, Mike Calvert, Collin Casey, Jackson Currant, Antonio DiFronzo, Jake Fortier, Sean Herbert, Louis Izzi, Steve MacIntosh, Eric Pimentel, Josh Roderick, Victor Rodriguez, Cameron Rosie, Isaac Seide, Mandip Singh and Pat Whelan.
Melrose looks to maintain momentum when they take on Winchester on Friday, Dec. 23 at Winchester High. Then they will compete in the always-competitive Lowell Holiday Tournament, a two day event starting Dec. 27.