EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

December 15, 2013

Never say die

Late pins propel Owls past Lawrence

By Dave Dyer
ddyer@eagletribune.com

---- — LAWRENCE — Timberlane veterans Tim McLinden and Dan Scalzo showed perfectly yesterday afternoon why the best wrestlers keep at it until the very last second.

Trailing Lawrence’s Manny Arias throughout the 126-pound match, including 7-5 with less than 25 seconds remaining, McLinden made a late move and then recorded a pin with only nine seconds remaining.

Three matches later, Scalzo injured his back in the first period and was trailing rugged Sonlly Pena 7-5 after two periods before taking a 10-5 lead in the third. But Pena rallied to tie the match and send the hurting Scalzo into overtime.

But Scalzo pulled himself together, got a takedown in overtime and completed the move for a pin at the 6:43 mark.

The two pins, both of which could have been setbacks, were pivotal as the Owls prevailed with a hard fought 43-30 victory within a quad-meet of some of the best teams in the region if not the state. Timberlane also beat strong Framingham (47-24) and St. John’s Prep (38-28) teams, the latter thanks to strong efforts by Jason Kayyal and Zach Stewart.

“My back popped out in the first period and it was kind of painful,” said Scalzo. “I gave it my all (in overtime) for the pin. I knew we needed the (team) points.”

“I’m proud of the way my guys battled,” said Timberlane coach Barry Chooljian. “Lawrence has some tough guys and we had to work at it. Those were big pins by McLinden and Scalzo.”

The Owls won eight matches, including five by pins. Joining McLinden and Scalzo with falls were Ryan Peters at 138, Shawn Grenier at 195 and Cody Lewis at 106. Cam Altobelli and Brian Lonergan (dominating 13-2 major decision) added decisions at 152 and 160, respectively.

A highlight for Lawrence, which won its other two meets on the day, was a 4-3 decision by Anfernee Green at 132. Trailing Derek Bohle throughout the second and third periods, he nailed a late takedown and two back points for the win.

Recording pins for Lawrence were Ranjel Villar (170), Oscar Mejias (182) and Stalin Urena (285), while Jan Pichardo prevailed with a 6-0 decision at 220 and Miguel Rodriguez picked up a forfeit at 113.

“I’m a little disappointed, but I think this will help us and we’ll come back and learn from it,” said Lawrence coach Rob Niceforo. “It’ll make us a better team.”

The Lancers did bounce back to beat Reading in their last meet of the day, recovering from a 25-9 deficit to prevail, 39-28.

Pentucket lost all three of its meets, but Josh Wesolowski was 3-0 on the day in his weight class.

Owls clip Lawrence

Team scores: Timberlane 43, Lawrence 30; Timberlane 47, Framingham 24; Timberlane 38, St. John’s Prep 28; Lawrence 39, Reading 28; Lawrence 63, Pentucket 3; St. John’s Prep 39, Reading 24; St. John’s Prep 53, Framingham 21; Framingham 58, Pentucket 9; Reading 48, Pentucket 6

Timberlane vs. Lawrence:

106: Cody Lewis (T) pin William Tellez :43; 113: Miguel Rodriguez (L) by forfeit; 120: Tyler Fitzpatrick (T) pin Ramon Villaire 1:25; 126: Tim McLinden pin Manny Arias 5:51; 132: Anfernee Green (L) dec. Derek Bohle 4-3; 138: Ryan Peters (T) pin Chris Hernandez 1:02; 145: Dan Scalzo (T) pin Sonlly Pena 6:43, OT;

152: Cam Altobello (T) dec. Rafael Medina 7-3; 160: Brian Lonergan (T) major dec. Joel Gomez 13-2; 170: Ranjel Villar (L) pin 3:00; 182: Oscar Mejias (L) pin Ben Sargent 1:51; 195: Shawn Grenier (T) pin Andy Delacruz 1:20; 220: Jan Pichardo (L) dec. Mike DeGregorio 6-0; HVY: Stalin Urena (L) pin Zach Stewart 2:47

Records: Lawrence 2-1; Timberlane 4-0; St. John’s Prep 2-1