CUMBERLAND, R.I. - The Bristol Eastern wrestling team continued winning on Saturday by capturing the title at the elite 29th annual John D. Gorman tournament in Cumberland, R.I., for the first time as a team.
Led by three individual champions and nine other medalists, Eastern’s depth helped top a deep field that included perennial top 10 teams from throughout New England.
The Lancers finished with 221 points, followed by North Attleboro, Mass., with 207.5; Cumberland, R.I., with 181; and North Andover, Mass., with 139.
“Depth wins tournaments like these,” Eastern coach Bryant Lishness said. “We placed 12 kids to North Attleboro’s 11. We both had four finalists as well. We had three champs to their one.”
Winning their weight classes were Bryce Beebe (106 pounds), Mikey Barrett (160) and Trinidad Gonzalez (195). All three entered the tournament with the top seed for their weight class and wrestled as expected.
Beebe went 4-0 on the day with two pins and two decisions. In the final he faced Brady Gillis of host Cumberland High School and won a 7-2 decision.
Mikey Barrett went 3-0. After a bye in the first round, he secured a fall over Matt Maguire of Cumberland and a 7-1 decision over Adam Eberle of North Attleboro to reach the final, where he won a 10-2 major decision over the consensus No. 1 160-pounder in Rhode Island, Elijah Burges of Johnston High School.
At 195 pounds, Trinidad Gonzalez went 4-0 on the day. He had two pins and an 8-1 decision over LaSalle Academy’s Gregory Gregorian in the semifinals.
Lishness was pleased with Trinidad’s performance.
“There is no limit to how good Trinidad can be at these upper weights,” he said. “We keep pushing him to be more offensive, because he is usually such a good defensive wrestler that it is very difficult to put points up against him. When Trinidad scores, he wins.”
In the final, Gonzalez came away with a 5-4 decision over Kareem Sangare of Cumberland.
“That match was more about position than anything else,” Lishness said. “Trin has been wrestling for a long time, and if he can get other kids to engage with him and actually wrestle and scramble, he usually ends up on top.
“I really like what I saw out of him today. He was aggressive and physical. He had opponents backing up all day and he was scoring first.”
Other wrestlers for Eastern that earned medals at Cumberland were second place finisher Diego Fernandez (145), third place finisher Tom Nichols (120), fourth place finishers Jordon Champagne (113) and Dylan Levesque (170), fifth place finisher Noah Piazza (138) and sixth place finishers Justin Marshall (152), Keegan Bartis (182), Hidakel Manguel (220) and Andrew Cercone (285).
Also placing for Eastern as a non-scored was Trent Thompson (106).
“This was a great day of wrestling,” Lishness said. “Overall we are pleased with our performance. We’ve been coming to this tournament for seven years now and it is our first time winning it.
“It’s great competition. Cumberland is one of the top schools in Rhode Island, North Attleboro and North Andover are a couple of the top schools in Massachussetts. All of them send guys to New Englands.
“Our guys wrestled well and the good part is that we are leaving hungry. There are guys who are leaving here dissatisfied with their performance. We have things to work on and they want to get better.”