SANFORD — Marshwood High started fast and had the Class A wrestling team title wrapped up before the championship bouts even started. Senior captain Tyler Davidson had to wait a little longer to make some individual history.
Davidson became the 16th wrestler to win four Maine high school state wrestling championships when he dominated the third period en route to a 10-1 win over rival Lucas Dion of Massabesic in the 120-pound division at Saturday’s Class A Championships at Sanford’s Memorial Gym.
“Either way, win or lose, the pressure (to win four straight titles) was going to be off,” Davidson said. “But it’s just a whole (different) feel to it if you win it, you know? You’re going to go home twice as happy because we won states as a team.”
Marshwood got its second straight championship performance started with 10 pins in the opening round Saturday and continued to excel throughout the day. Six Hawks won individual titles to go with a runner-up and three third-place finishers as the team racked up 201 points.
The championships were delayed a week due to Winter Storm Nemo. That turned into five additional rugged practices in South Berwick.
“It seems like we came out here a lot better than some of the other teams and a lot better than even we could have expected,” 138-pound champ Nick Janes said after winning his second straight title. “To have six of us come out here and win is pretty impressive.”
Marshwood had the title mathematically wrapped up before the consolation finals were finished.
“The kids were ready. They didn’t slow down at all,” Marshwood coach Matt Rix said. “I think it showed that extra week can either make or break somebody. The kids took advantage of it.”
Massabesic, with six finalists, finished second with 113 points. Eastern champion Skowhegan (105 points) placed third, led by champions Tyler Craig (113 pounds) and Andrew Pineo, who won his 150th career match when he topped Windham’s Christian Coons in the final. Western A runner-up Noble struggled throughout the day and finished with 80 points.
It was Davidson who got the Hawks rolling in the final with his win against Dion, which he finished with a takedown in the final 10 seconds. Earlier this season Davidson learned he had been admitted to the Naval Academy Prep School, fulfilling another goal.
In quick succession, Marshwood added more titles. Senior Trevor Smith defeated Dominick Day of Biddeford at 132 pounds (10-6) after losing to Day three times in the season. Janes beat Skowhegan’s Kaleb Brown, 7-4, at 138 pounds. Sophomore Jackson Howarth pinned Massabesic’s Trevor Burns at 145 and sophomore Cody Hughes won his second straight title with a dominant pin over Anthony Sprigg of Brewer. It was the second straight championship for Janes, Howarth and Hughes.
Brett Gerry, another sophomore, won his first state title at 182 pounds, beating Mike Risti of Massabesic, 5-2
It was not an all-Marshwood show, however, as both city-school and independent wrestlers captured championships.
At 106 pounds, Portland junior Kidayer Aljubyly defeated Mike Aboud of Massabesic, 7-1. Aljubyly, a native of Iraq who began wrestling his freshman season, had beaten Aboud in the Western final.
“Since like the summer I’ve been working out to become state champ,” Aljubyly said. “I had a goal like the first season and last year, too, thanks to my coach Tony (Napolitano). He taught me everything I know.”
Cheverus 126-pound senior Iain Whitis joked that he, Nick Vogel of Greely (160) and Jared Jensen of Brunswick (170) should form their own team.
“We’d be undefeated,” Whitis said.
Whitis, who trains with Deering, won his second straight title beating Tyler Everett of Massabesic, 11-8, with a dramatic late third-period takedown and near fall. Jensen, who trains with Mt. Ararat, was named the Most Outstanding Wrestler after winning his third state title and maintaining his undefeated record, beating Skowhegan’s Mikal Federici, 14-4.
Vogel, a captain at Windham, went from never placing at the state championships to being the only person to defeat a Marshwood wrestler in the final, edging Terrence O’Brien, 4-2.
“He’s a tough wrestler. He’s got a great coach. Matt Rix has something magical going on there at Marshwood,” Vogel said. “It feels great going out there and being able to beat one of those guys, especially being an independent.”
Victor Irwin of Brewer won at 220. Irwin, last year’s 195-pound champ, pinned defending 220 pound champion Josh Andrews of Massabesic.
At 285, Bonny Eagle’s Isaiah Reynolds edged Jacob Nichols of Nokomis, 5-4.