Mansfield Rallies in Middle Weights to Edge Canton

Mansfield wrestling
Senior Stephen Healy picked up an important pin in the 138-pound weight class to help Mansfield turn around an early deficit and beat Canton. (Josh Perry/HockomockSports.com)

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CANTON, Mass. – Early in Wednesday night’s dual meet in the Canton High gym, the Bulldogs looked at home on the brand new mat, winning four matches in a row and taking the lead over visiting Mansfield heading into the 138-pound weight class.

Canton’s Max Gallagher had the lead after the opening round and seemed to have control of the match in the second with a 5-2 advantage on Mansfield senior Stephen Healy. The match and possibly the whole dual meet turned in an instant when Healy squirmed out of a hold and flipped Gallagher. He went from the edge of being pinned to winning the match and earning six points for the Hornets.

When the ref slapped the mat, the Hornets bench exploded out of its seats to celebrate the turn in momentum. Mansfield won 145 at a walk over and then took four of the next five matches, three of them by pin, to seal the victory. Canton would earn pins in the final two matches of the night but the Hornets walked away with a 37-34 victory.

“Stephen Healy really stands out,” said Mansfield coach Mark DiSanto. “He’s a senior who has worked his butt off and he came through big for us. That was a big match, it was probably one of the differences.”

Antonio Sevastos started off the night with a 2-0 victory at 106 pounds to put Mansfield ahead 3-0, but the hosts went on a roll with four straight wins to take control. Justin Dickie had a second round pin at 113, Harry Carter won 8-2 at 120, Eddie Marinilli just held on long enough to edge Will Stratton 3-2 at 126, and Anis Chakir rolled to a 12-4 major win at 132 for a 16-3 lead.

“We had a couple matchup issues,” said Canton coach Brian Caffelle, “and honestly we thought we were going to steal one in particular. We had a good lead, we were feeling good, and saying to ourselves, okay if we win this match then we can really seal the deal early on.”

Healy found a way to pull out his match and after the Hornets won by forfeit at 145 the lead was down to just one point. Although it is difficult to overcome a missing weight class, Canton bounced right back with a second round pin by Joey Pacitti on a big reversal.

“I stress that regardless of what happens, we’re giving up six but we still have to go out there and wrestle well enough to make up for it,” Caffelle explained. “You can’t use that as an excuse.”

Sophomore George Glaropolous got a first round pin at 160 that got Mansfield back to a one-point deficit at 22-21 and then his classmate Jayden Curley pulled off a big win at 170 to give the Hornets their first lead of the night.

Curley battled Canton senior Brandon Lentol and the pair traded near falls in a high-scoring opening round and Curley took control in the second, building an 18-6 lead. But in the third round Lentol started to get back into the match, cutting the lead to 10 and then as the horn sounded he seemed on the edge of putting Curley on his back only to have time run out.

It was a big win for the younger wrestler, particularly because he was one of several Hornets who had to move up a weight class for the dual meet. Freshman Vinnie Holmes was another who bumped up and he rolled to a first round pin at 182.

“Right now I think everyone is focused one match at a time and for the team,” said DiSanto. “Whatever us coaches ask them to do they’re going to do. If we ask for them to bump up, they’re going to bump up and they like that challenge.”

Shane Cremmen sealed the victory for Mansfield with two matches remaining, getting a first round pin to push the lead to 37-22. Mark Whalen (220) and Nick Matt (285) ended the meet on a high note for the Bulldogs with back-to-back pins.

“We’re still trying to learn to win on a consistent level and we’re right there. I think we’re right on the cusp of doing great things,” said Caffelle.

He added, “We’re right there and it’s something we can build on. This is going to sting a little bit but you’d rather have these matches early on in the season because it’s going to pay off when we have a real dogfight in sectionals or when we really start going into the Davenport.”

With the win, Mansfield improved to 6-1 on the season, which is just one shy of the win total for the Hornets in all of 2015-16. This even more impressive considering the vast majority of the roster is underclassmen.

“It’s a big win for the team,” said DiSanto. “We take this match, enjoy tonight and get right back to work tomorrow, but overall the success that we’ve had is fantastic. Everyone is just coming together and they’re focused on team first.”

Mansfield will try to keep its momentum in a Super-Quad at Plymouth South before the prestigious Marshfield Tournament. Canton will head to the Lowell Tournament next week, which is one of the top tournaments in the state year-in, year-out.

Tuesday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 01/05/16

Today’s games are listed below.
Hockey
North Attleboro, 2 @ Bishop Feehan, 5 – FinalZach McGowan and Erik Clements scored for the Rocketeers. 
Wrestling
Foxboro, 42 @ Canton, 33 – Final – Picking up wins for Canton were Steven Corkery, Justin Dickie, Brendan Lewis, Brandon Lentol, Mark Whalen and Nick Matt
Taunton, 6 @ Franklin, 59 – Final
Sharon, 45 @ Milford, 33 – Final

Oliver Ames, 62 @ Stoughton, 18 – Final – Oliver Ames improved to 10-3, which is the best start in program history. The Tigers got pins from Casey Bellevue (113), John Quilla (120), Chris Belleton (126), Liston Funai (132), Shea O’Connor (152), Ryan Lehane (160), Jacob Murphy (170), Jay Fruci (182) and Carter Wood (195). 

Tuesday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 12/22/15

Today’s games are listed below.
Hockey
Attleboro, 2 vs. Bellingham, 7 – Final – PJ Elliott scored a goal and had an assist for the Bombardiers and Keagin Larkin scored once.

Foxboro, 1 vs. St. John Paul II, 2 – Final

Franklin, 0 @ Pope Francis, 4 – Final
Wrestling
Canton, 12 @ Franklin, 59 – Final – Canton’s two wins came from Brandon Lentol (160) and Nick Matt (285), his sixth win of the year in just his first season of wrestling. 

Foxboro, 46 @ King Philip, 27 – Final
Mansfield, 27 @ Milford, 52 – Final

Oliver Ames, 12 @ North Attleboro, 63 – Final – Oliver Ames got wins from Cobey Williamson (106), Liston Funai (132) and Dean Pachini in the loss to the Rocketeers.

Stoughton, 54 @ Taunton, 21 – Final
Swimming
Boys
Sharon, 71 @ Attleboro, 91 – Final
Foxboro, 69 @ Norton, 80 – Final
Girls
Sharon, 91 @ Attleboro, 73 – Final
Foxboro, 85 @ Norton, 81 – Final
King Philip, 86 @ Stoughton, 64 – Final
Gymnastics
Oliver Ames, 124.9 @ Attleboro, 133.5 – Final

Wednesday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 12/16/15

Today’s games are listed below.
Girls Basketball
Canton, 44 @ Norton, 47 – FinalEmma Murphy scored 16 points and added nine rebounds for the Bulldogs. 
Hockey
Attleboro, 5 @ Milford, 3 – FinalJake Parker had two goals for the Bombardiers who trailed 2-1 heading into the third period. Attleboro scored four shorthanded goals and outshot the Hawks 41-12.
Taunton, 7 @ Foxboro, 0 – FinalSenior Tyler Pietrzyk scored a pair of goals and added two assists and his sophomore brother Trevor added two goals of his own for Taunton. Defensemen David Perry and Nick Terry each scored goals for the Tigers and Will Walsh had a goal and an assist. John Cronin made 22 saves for the Warriors. 
Mansfield, 2 @ North Attleboro, 2 – Final – Connor Ford gave the Rocketeers the lead in the second period off an assist from Hunter Sarro. Mansfield tied it up via Matt Farragher from Mike Arnold and Shane Doherty. North Attleboro regained the lead in the third period off a goal from Andrew Casson (assist Erik Clements) while Mansfield tied things again off a goal from Max Hoffman from Pat Graham. 
Wrestling
Canton, 51 @ Taunton, 26 – Final – Canton got wins from Steven Corkery, Justin Dickie, Jack O’Brien, Brendan Lewis, Sean Murphy, Brandon Lentol, Stathi Dandis, Caleb Nix and Nick Matt. Head coach Brian Caffelle noted a strong performance from Cole Lee in his first varsity match at 182. For Taunton, Jorge Rodriguez (138), Alex Rodriguez (145), Brandon Deforitis (152), Nuno Camara (182) and Santiago Lopez (220) got wins. 
Franklin, 27 @ Foxboro, 33 – Final
Stoughton, 27 @ King Philip, 54 – Final
Sharon, 61 @ Mansfield, 18 – Final
North Attleboro, 56 @ Milford, 21 – Final
Swimming
Boys
Oliver Ames, 60 @ Attleboro, 106 – Final – Oliver Ames’ Andrew Abramson (500 free) and Kyle Gray (200 free) each qualified for sectionals in the loss.

Sharon, 106 @ Mansfield, 62 – Final
North Attleboro, 73.5 @ Milford, 93.5 – Final
Girls
Oliver Ames, 89 @ Attleboro, 77 – FinalOliver Ames’ Mia Esterman qualified for sectionals in the 500 free and Makayla Paquin qualified  in the 100 backstroke. 

Sharon, 86 @ Mansfield, 84 – Final
North Attleboro, 112 @ Milford, 57 – Final
Girls Hockey
Canton, 1 @ Falmouth, 3 – Final
Franklin, 4 @ King Philip, 5 – Final
Mansfield/Oliver Ames, 2 @ Matignon, 9 – Final

Stoughton, 0 @ Scituate, 8 – Final – In the program’s varsity debut, Stoughton head coach Richard Grasso noted the great defensive play by Julia Russell and Sarah Widrow.