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Sports

January 27, 2013

Monserrat remains supreme with dominating title

Methuen, North Andover crown two champs; Rheaume shines

METHUEN — Nothing is automatic, and there are clearly no guaranteed winners in high school wrestling.

But Methuen junior Christian Monserrat comes close.

Monserrat remained undefeated yesterday with yet another dominating performance at the Methuen Invitational, breezing to the 126-pound crown with a 48-second pin in the finals.

For the season, Monserrat is now 38-0 with 32 pins and, for his career he’s a stunning 130-2. His only two losses have come in the finals of the New England Tournament.

“It’s hard to be any more dominating than he’s been,” said Methuen coach Bill James. “He does it all.”

But despite his record, and although he has always radiated extreme confidence, Monserrat knows that he can be beaten at any time. So he takes an unusual approach to every match.

“I know that everyone wants to beat me and take my spot so my mindset is that I’m the underdog,” said Monserrat. “I hear it every day that someone wants to beat me ... it’s putting a lot of pressure on me, but it makes me work harder.”

Monserrat was one of five local champions on a day in which the local teams were not at their best. Vermont power Mount Anthony was a runaway winner with 218 points, followed by Springfield Central (157) and North Andover (137) in the 18-team field. Lawrence (112 1/2) came in fifth and Methuen (102) was sixth.

Joining Monserrat with titles were 106-pound freshman teammate Billy Wehring, Salem’s John Rheaume at 120, North Andover’s Brad Drover at 160 and North Andover’s Ryan Neals at 182.

Wehring, who improved to 35-3, avenged a loss to North Andover’s Danielle Coughlin from last week with a 2-0 win in the semifinals; and then had an impressive 3-2 win over once-beaten Brad Wong of Pembroke in the finals.

“It was nice to get the rematch (with Coughlin) right away,” said Wehring. “Losing (last week) motivated me to work harder for today.”

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