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December 31, 2013

Peters Principle

Driven sophomore champion sparks Timberlane to second-place in team standings

LOWELL — Sophomore Ryan Peters wasn’t the only Timberlane wrestler disappointed by his performance at the national “Beast of the East” tournament in Delaware over the Christmas vacation, but he may have been the most resolved to do something about it.

“I definitely wasn’t happy about it,’ said Peters, who was 1-2 at the Beast. “I started working on some things in practice with coach (Barry Chooljian) and I knew I needed better endurance.”

Whatever Peters has done in the last 10 days, it seemed to work yesterday as he captured the 138-pound class at the highly regarded 72-team Bossi Lowell Holiday Tournament with an overtime pin over Canton’s rugged Quinn Merrigan.

That victory and pin helped lift the Owls to second place overall with 183 points, trailing only Vermont power Mt. Anthony (248) and edging Springfield Central by three points.

Londonderry, led by 132-pound champ Jean-Luc Lemieux, was fifth with 161 points while North Andover, paced by 170-pound champ Brad Drover, came in sixth with 154.

That a rebuilding Timberlane squad was able to finish second to Mt. Anthony was somewhat of a surprise because the Owls were as far back as 15th in the standings early in the day.

But junior Dan Scalzo came in second at 145, senior Tyler Fitzpatrick enjoyed an outstanding tournament to place third at 120, Derek Bohle and Brian Lonergan came in fourth at 132 and 160 respectively and Tim McLinden grabbed a fifth at 126.

“I liked the way we competed and battled back,” said Timberlane coach Barry Chooljian. “We had to play catchup and to finish second here with what we’ve been through is pretty darn good.”

No one battled as hard as Peters. In a match of non-stop motion, Peters and Merrigan were tied 0-0, 7-7 and 12-12 after the first three periods. Then in overtime, Peters got the takedown and followed with a pin in 28 seconds.

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