Central Catholic Raiders Wrestling '07-'08

Wed, Jan 16, 2008 06:00 PM @ Timberlane
Team Final
Central Catholic 24
Timberlane 37

Timberlane slides past Timberlane

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Timberlane Vs. Central Catholic wrestling Wednesday evening at Timberlane Regional High School in Plaistow. » Jarrod Thompson, Staff PhotographerMore photos

Thursday, January, 17 By Dave Dyer
Staff writer

PLAISTOW, N.H. | Much to Mike Leavitt's delight, Central Catholic gave Timberlane a mild scare last night.

The unbeaten Owls (11-0) prevailed 37-24, but the Raiders (8-3) had a brief early lead and gave Timberlane its toughest match of the season.

"To keep it this close against probably the best team in New England is very satisfying," said Leavitt, a senior captain from Atkinson, N.H., who grew up wrestling for the Timberlane middle school team. "We've been talking all week about not being scared wrestling here, and everyone stepped up. I thought I wrestled the worst match of anyone."

Leavitt, a Lowell Holiday Tournament champion at 189, eventually prevailed over gutsy Owl opponent Max Zdrada, 9-8, one of four close decisions that went the Raiders' way. Mike Farragher opened the meet at 125 with a 7-6 decision over Cole Priddy and Darwin Almonte (152) and Shain Jowett (160) also had one-point wins.

Almonte recorded the most exciting victory of the evening, a triple-overtime win over sophomore Nick Scali at 152, and Jowett followed by getting a quick third-period reverse of Eric Hebert for a 3-2 decision at 160.

Jack DiBurro (135) and Mark Strassell (112) both had pins for the Raiders, but it was the close decisions that kept the meet competitive.

Trailing 15-14 after Jowett's win, the Owls pulled ahead for good when Eric Petrillo reversed Dave Kando with a sudden move and then moved in for a pin, making it 20-15, Timberlane. After Leavitt's close call, Timberlane's Matt Tardif gained a 7-0 decision at 215, heavyweight Brian Nicoll pinned at 2:40 and 103-pounder Cam Sullivan worked hard for a 17-1 technical decision at 103.

"My upper weights pulled it out for us," said Timberlane coach Barry Chooljian. "I thought we were flat and wrestled tired | wrestling four two-day tournaments in four weeks, but I give Central credit for the way they wrestled. They have a tough dual-meet team and they made us work for it."

Other winners for the Owls were freshmen Matt Morris (119) and Nick Lawrence (130), both with decisions, 140-pounder Dave Clemens with a 16-0 technical fall and Jarad Smith with a pin at 145.

"I'm happy with the win, but we need to pick it up if want to keep getting better," said Chooljian. "I'll be having a talk with the kids about it."

Timberlane will host its own invitational Saturday.

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