The senior members of the WHS Wrestling team

The senior members of the WHS Wrestling team includes front row from left, Aryan Bhateja, Brian Duggan, Adam LeBlanc and Yvenson Jeanty; back row from left, Luke Vitale, Marcello Misuraca, Nicholas Doyle, and Jack Rooney. (photo by

WILMINGTON – With a full roster, the Wilmington High Wrestling team may very well have pulled off a great upset victory last Thursday night when they hosted Middlesex League rival Winchester at Cush­ing Gymnasium.

Unfortunately for the Wildcats, who were forced to forfeit at four different weight classes, an upset was not to be, as they fell to their talented rivals by a score of 48-36 to drop their record on the season to 0-2.

In the matches where the Wildcats actually com­peted, they outscored the Sachems 30-24 (Winches­ter also forfeited one match), making for a very exciting night of wrestling on a night when the Wild­cats honored the history of the wrestling program, raising a banner in recognition of all of the 100-win wrestlers in the history of the program.

While the final results were not what the Wild­cats would have liked, first year coach Pete Mit­chell could not have been prouder of his team's ef­forts on the night.

"I can't speak highly enough about these kids. They battled so hard and they work so hard. I am just very, very impressed with their work ethic," Mitchell said. "I am so proud to be their coach. We have a great group of kids. A loss is a loss, but I am so proud of them, and I am looking forward to the rest of the season."

Starting off in an 18-0 hole after forfeits at 106, 113 and 120 pounds, the Wildcats wasted little time in battling their way back into the meet, picking up three wins in a row, starting with a pin from senior Luke Vitale at 126 pounds in a time of 4:38. Vitale's win was followed by wins by pin from Adam Lopez at 132 and sophomore Julien Cella at 138.

Lopez's win was incredible turnaround, as he trail­ed 11-4 in his match before securing a pin with just six seconds left in the match.

"Adam has had three matches just like that," Mitchell said. "He has been down, but he is a third period wrestler. That is a credit to our guy's conditioning and how they really work."

Senior Brian Duggan kept up the Wildcats winning ways at 145 pounds with a pin just 37 seconds into his match to give Wil­mington their first lead of the night at 24-18. Win­chester came back to pick up wins at 152 and 160 pounds to take a 30-24 lead, but senior Jack Roo­ney came back to pick up a big win at 170 pounds, pinning his opponent in just 1:27 to even up the match at 30-30 heading into the home stretch.

Winchester, however, would take the next two matches by pin at 182 and 195 pounds to build a 42-30 lead that proved to be in­surmountable for the Wild­cats when they were forced to forfeit at 220 pounds to make the score 48-30.

Winchester would forfeit at 285 pounds to account for the 48-36 final.

"This is definitely something we can build on," Mitchell said. "We had a great crowd here tonight, honoring some great wrest­lers who came through the Wilmington wrestling program. It was a great at­mosphere for the kids and I was glad they were able to be a part of that. We have a lot of young kids, and they are hungry. They want to win. They don't like losing. I guess that's what makes it fun, is seeing all the work they have put in."

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