Londonderry Lancers Wrestling '07-'08

Londonderry on the upswing

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Monday, January, 14 By Dave Dyer
Staff writer

This is turning out to be quite the successful transition year for Londonderry.

A transition year is what first-year coach Jim Marron envisioned, but it's become much better than that. The Lancers are currently 9-1 and finished first at both the Alvirne and Bow tournaments and second at the Haverhill Tournament.

Marron, however, is not exactly celebrating yet. A former Navy petty officer and the director of the middle school wrestling program since 1996, he is keeping things in perspective.

"Realistically, who have we beat?" asks Marron. "The schedule was set before I got here, and it's not as tough as it should be. We did beat Nashua South and Winnacunnet, who are pretty good, but we won only two matches against Timberlane and that's the standard.

"The Alvirne and Bow tournaments were basically D2 and D1 JV teams, although finishing second at Haverhill was satisfying. That was a pretty good tournament and it shows we're improving.

"If you want to do something in wrestling, you have to work at it and we work very hard. It's starting to show up." Marron focuses on developing mental intensity and durable endurance through trying practices.

"The comment I got back after the second day of practice was a senior who went home and said, 'He's trying to kill us,' " said Marron. "But I think what we're trying to accomplish is starting to show up."

One example is junior Cody Byrd, who was 40-7 and a New England qualifier last year. He is currently 27-3 including a second place at Lowell Holidays and was the Outstanding Wrestler at the Merrimack Tournament over the weekend.

"Our coach is very serious, and pretty strict, but I think it helps," said Byrd, who spent eight years competing in judo prior to focusing on wrestling. "Practices are much harder. We're more about conditioning than technique and it seems like when we're in the third period, it's paying off. He wants us to have an attitude and really go after it, and it seems to be working."

It's definitely a case of so far, so good.

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