Cavs win 3rd title in 4 years
Andrew Butler knew there was a lot on the line Saturday at the Division II wrestling championships at ConVal High School.
Butler was in the finals again, at 160 pounds, and the Hollis Brookline High School senior needed to get a win, or else.
“As a senior, it just means so much, I couldn’t let myself lose,” he said. “I said before, kind of jokingly, this is the difference between me being happy and not happy for the rest of my life.”
Butler was happy after the match, as he held off Merrimack’s Mitchell McMahon, 7-5, to win the 160-pound title and help the Cavaliers to their third Division II team title in the last four years.
HB had three wrestlers each finish first, second and third, and scored 200.5 points to finish ahead of Windham (193), which had won three straight Division III titles before moving up this season.
Winnacunnet took third with 149 points, while Milford came in fourth with 119 and Bishop Guertin was fifth with 114.
Merrimack took sixth with 112 points.
A total of nine wrestlers from Greater Nashua took home individual titles, and a total of 30 finished in the top five and will move on to next Saturday’s Meet of Champions, which will be held at Nashua North.
Butler was joined on the championship stand by teammates Caleb Lomme, who needed just 34 seconds to pin Windham’s Ross Wentworth at 182, and Kayne Robert, who beat Windham’s Mike Tanguay 9-2 at 195. Those two wins helped the Cavs overcome a 12.5-point deficit heading into the finals.
“Andrew is a kid who came in as a freshman, and he bought, one hundred percent, into everything that we talked about,” HB coach Brian Bumpus said of Butler. “He’s everything that we want Hollis Brookline wrestling to be. He’s put in the time and put in the work. When he came off the mat, I can’t just imagine a more deserving kid.”
HB also got a couple of surprise finishes, including Thomas Hoey, who went from being unseeded at 126 pounds to finishing second.
“It was a day of ups and downs, all around,” Bumpus said. “We got some great production at some weight classes that we weren’t sure we were going to get production. I’m really proud of the guys. All of them came in here with the same focus and goal in mind.”
Bishop Guertin also had three champions, as Jordan Rowlett (106), Jacob Bue (113) and Brandon Levesque (152), who pinned Windham’s Troy Peters in 2:36.
“Words can’t describe how much work I put in, so it’s nice to have it pay off,” Levesque said. “I wrestled him twice this season and I knew he’d be tight. Thankfully, I got the stick, so I was excited about that.”
Merrimack’s Eric Theriault ended Hoey’s run of upsets in the 126 final, as he won 6-0 to give the Tomahawks their lone champ.
Milford’s Travis Hughes repeated as champ at 285, pinning Windham’s Patrick Humme in 1:33, and Michael Pellitteri also won at 145, pinning Goffstown’s Ben Francoeur in 1:29.
“Winning last year, it was very exciting and it was new to me,” Hughes said. “Going into this year, knowing how much it takes, and how much hard work you put in, and getting into pressure situations, it helped me with what I needed to do and knowing what I needed to do.
“(Pellitteri) works harder than anybody. The kid puts in so much time and effort, and now he knows the great feeling.”
HB had two other wrestlers finish second, as Nathaniel Lindsay was runner-up at 132, as was Wyatt Farwell at 170. Garrett Klausner (120), Lucas Cummings (138) and Christian Lopez (152) each took third, while Savannah Eliza (113), Nick McPherson (145) and Clement Sherwood (220) were fifth.
Josh Smith (220) was third for Milford, while Jacob Girouard (138), Jake Ricca (170) and Kyle Faucher-Clancy (182) each finished fourth. Peyton Dannewitz (132) took fifth.
Bishop Gueritn got a third place from Christopher Lyskawa (195) while David Hanna (220) was fourth and Sam Colantuoni (285) was fifth.
Kyle Newman (145) took third for Merrimack while the Tomahawks got fourth places from Brendan Parr (113) and Shane Heath (195). Zach Bulow (106), Sean Hebert (138) and Jared Serrentino (145) each finished fifth.
The top five wrestlers advance to Saturday’s Meet of Champions.