By Dave Dyer
---- — DERRY — It’s do or die time for the Timberlane wrestling team and senior captain Adam Corey, for one, knows it’s not really a choice for the perennial powerhouse Owls.
Corey put on a clinic while winning the 120-pound weight class yesterday at the Meet of Champions to help spark Timberlane to its eighth straight Meet of Champions title
As has been the case in recent years, the Owls overwhelmed the rest of the field, taking first with 241 1/2 points, more than doubling the score of runner-up Pinkerton.
Corey pinned his first opponent in 20 seconds, won his semifinal opponent with a fall in 1:37 and then came out like a tortured bull in the finals, taking an 8-3 lead in the first period over a very strong John Rheaume of Salem, who also had first-period pins in his first two matches, and prevailing with a commanding 14-5 major decision.
Corey placed fifth in New England last year and entered the match with an excellent 32-6 record against good competition but, explaining his aggressive approach, he was far from satisfied.
“It’s go time, and I’m sick of losing,” said Corey. “I’m not happy with the way I’ve wrestled, but now is the time to do it.”
That may have been the general philosophy for the Owls, who sent seven wrestlers to the finals and had two wrestlers who came in third, which qualifies them for next weekend’s New England Tournament in Providence.
Joining Corey with a gold medal were 106-pounder Tyler Fitzpatrick, 138-pounder Josh Burnham, 170-pounder Josh Riley and 182-pounder Harry Denoncourt.
Fitzpatrick, who is now 42-4 for the season, defeated Nashua North’s Cam Bennett for the second straight week, this time 2-0, Burnham (36-9) repeated against Manchester Central’s Keaton Peterson, Riley (33-4) held off Exeter’s David Burke in the finals and Denoncourt (39-4) prevailed over Milford’s Joe Albina.
Finishing second for the Owls were 113-pounder Tim McLinden, a junior, and 126-pound freshman Ryan Peters while Dan Scalzo was third at 132 and Chris Pagliccia was third at 160.
Scalzo had a rousing 15-0 technical fall in the consolation finals while Pagliccia had a pin.
“I’m really pretty happy with the way we wrestled,” said Timberlane coach Barry Chooljian. “We had a good semifinal round and got the guys we needed to into the finals. We won the close matches and I was very pleased with that. I thought we stepped it up a notch today.”
It was a strong performance for Pinkerton in the finals. Sophomore Jean-Luc Lemieux got a late reversal in the second period in the 126-pound finals and held strong to defeat Peters for the second straight week while heavyweight Cam Crowell, now 38-3, continued his terrific season by pinning all three opponents, including his semifinal foe in 13 seconds.
Also winning from the area was Sanborn’s Jonathan Scheidegger, who remained undefeated by winning the 152-pound crown. Scheidegger defeated Concord’s rugged Vinny Benincasa 4-1 in the finals, getting a takedown in the second period and another at the end of the match. He is now 41-0 on the year.
Prior to the finals, Windham was presented with the New Hampshire Sportsmanship Award while Rheaume and Scheidegger were both awarded scholarships by the New Hampshire wrestling officials for the academic and athletic accomplishments.
agateHed:Meet of Champions
agateText:Top team scores (34 teams): @zzAgate:agateText:Timberlane 241 1/2, Pinkerton 119, Nashua North 108 1/2, Hollis-Brookline 95, Exeter 83, Manchester Central 83, Londonderry 79 1/2, Concord 72, Salem 68, Nashua South 59 1/2
agateText:Winners and local NE placers (top 3):
agateText:106@zzAgate:agateText:: 1. Tyler Fitzpatrick (Tim), 3. Amir Daouk (Lon); @zzAgate:agateText:113@zzAgate:agateText:: 1. Marcel LaPlante (NN); @zzAgate:agateText:120@zzAgate:agateText:: 1. Adam Corey (Tim), 2. John Rheaume (Sal); @zzAgate:agateText:126@zzAgate:agateText:: 1. Jean-Luc Lemieux (Pink), 2. Ryan Peters (Tim) ; @zzAgate:agateText:132@zzAgate:agateText:: 1. Brandon Levesque (BG), 3. Dan Scalzo (Tim); @zzAgate:agateText:138@zzAgate:agateText:: 1. Josh Burnham (Tim); @zzAgate:agateText:145@zzAgate:agateText:: 1. Azalkhon Sarvolov (MC); @zzAgate:agateText:152@zzAgate:agateText:: 1. Jon Scheidegger (Sanborn); @zzAgate:agateText:160@zzAgate:agateText:: 1. Ross Dannar (Exeter), 3. Chris Pagliccia (Tim); @zzAgate:agateText:170@zzAgate:agateText:: 1. Josh Riley (Tim); @zzAgate:agateText:182@zzAgate:agateText:: Harry Denoncourt (Tim); @zzAgate:agateText:195@zzAgate:agateText:: 1. Joe Chimelski (NN), 3. Kevin Ell (Pink); @zzAgate:agateText:220@zzAgate:agateText:: 1. Dakoda Simula (Plymouth); @zzAgate:agateText:HVY@zzAgate:agateText:: 1. Cam Crowell (Pink)