The Winslow wrestling team is putting things together as the end of season tournaments approach. The Black Raiders currently own a 16-10 dual-meet record and have performed well at the recent Noble and Skowhegan tournaments.

Last Saturday, Winslow won matches against Gardiner, Fryeburg, Lincoln and Mount View to ensure the program’s first winning dual meet season in 10 years, according to first-year head coach Kris Segars.

“We have a very young team with no seniors this year and only one junior,” Segars said. “It’s definitely been a building year.”

The team has a solid core of middleweights who thrive off each other in practice, according to Segars.

“Ben Abbott (152), Patrick Hopkins (160), Ryan Fredette (170) and our independent from Messalonskee, Austin Pelletier (160), make for a very competitive practice at times and keep each other working hard,” Segars said.

Sophomores Abbott and Hopkins each qualified for the state tournament last season.

“Junior captain Nat Beckwith (220) and freshman Devon Vigue (113) have both had a solid season thus far and are hoping to make a statement at states,” Segars said.

Winslow placed eighth overall in the 20-team Skowhegan tournament, as Beckwith reached the championship finals and finished second. Pelletier placed third, while Vigue, Abbott, Hopkins and Fredette placed fourth.

Three Black Raiders earned medals at the highly-competitive Noble tournament. Beckwith was fifth, while Vigue and Fredette each placed sixth.

Winslow closes out the dual meet part of its season Saturday with matches against defending Class A state champion Marshwood and Western B rivals Erskine and Wells in Wells. Segars will rely on the support of some rookie wrestlers in order to close out this part of the season in a positive fashion.

“Anthony Park, Andrew Beckwith, Devlin Braun and Dylan Inman — all newcomers this year — have become assets to the team’s dual meet success,” he said.

Although Pelletier is an independent, being part of the Winslow program is nothing new. He took part in both the pee wee and middle school programs in the Winslow feeder program.

“This is my sixth year wrestling” said Pelletier. “I got started through a friend that went to Winslow because basketball was only once a week (at Messalonskee) and I needed something else to do. I love being a part of the Winslow program because I get to make a bunch of new friends and meet a bunch of new people. The coaches and staff are great.”

On Feb. 7, Pelletier will compete in the Class A East Regional while his Winslow teammates will compete in Class B West.

• • •

Dylan Dahlbergh achieved a major career goal when he broke the Maine Central Institute career win record in a recent match against Belfast. Dahlbergh recorded his 133rd win to break the record held by Brandon Wright, who graduated in 2009 and was a state champion.

“It has been a goal since my junior year, when I won my 100th match at KVACs,” Dahlbergh said. “It has special meaning since Brandon Wright was my middle school coach and he was a big reason why I started wrestling.”

For his part, Wright was pleased that it was Dahlbergh who eclipsed his record.

“I couldn’t be happier for Dylan,” Wright said. “He has grown to be a great wrestler. I did help him some in middle school but it takes a special type of dedication to reach such an achievement and that cannot be taught.”

Dahlbergh holds a current season record of 31-1.

“I’m very proud of Dylan and his accomplishment,” MCI coach Mike Libby said. “He has been a big part of MCI wrestling for a long time now and it is rewarding to see a kid dedicate himself to the sport he loves. He is a special wrestler and this is yet another feather in his cap in an exceptional career.”

• • •

Some local wrestlers are excelling in the classroom as well as on the mats. Erskine and Monmouth each have two athletes who are members of the National Honor Society.

Erskine’s Cameron Grass and Zack Isbell hold claim to the prestigious membership, while Monmouth’s Emily Levasseur and Angus Koller also are members.

Koller has been accepted to the University of Maine and has applied for the United States Naval Academy. His main interests are in engineering and chemistry. Grass and Isbell also have their sights set on the engineering field. Grass plans on studying electrical engineering, while Isbell wants to pursue a career in civil engineering.

Levasseur is technically still a junior at Monmouth, but will graduate with the class of 2015. She has been accepted into Unity College and plans on majoring in adventure therapy.

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