Lack of Experience Hinders New Britain Wrestling

Photo by Paul Salina

By Antonio Squitieri (2/5/2016)

Link to published article:

The 2015-2016 season has been quite the change of pace for the New Britain wrestling team.

Coming off an 18-14 campaign last season, which included an eighth-place finish at the CIAC Class LL State tournament, with three wrestlers placing in the top three of their weight classes, this year has not exactly lived up to expectation.

With only a couple weeks remaining in the regular season, the Hurricanes claim only a small handful of dual meet wins. Their record this season has been a reflection of their mostly inexperienced roster rounded out by a number of underclassmen and first-year wrestlers.

Lead by 11th year head coach Charles Ferguson, the team is anchored by senior captains Jacob Graves (160) and Santiago Isaza (145) who have both fared well on the season thus far.

Graves and Isaza, along with veteran heavyweight Carlos Vasquez, have been the glue that has held this team together as they have worked every day to help their young teammates grasp the fundamentals of the sport in order to compete at a high level.

In recent weeks, the team has shown signs of improvement by capturing two dual meet wins in their last six, both of which were against conference foe Newington who has matched up well with New Britain this season by sharing many of the same strong spots in their lineup.

Their first victory over the Indians came two weeks ago at home by way of a 52-18 beat down. The Hurricanes scored team points in 10 consecutive matches as Newington forfeited five weight classes and dropped another six to overpowering New Britain opponents.

This past Saturday, the Hurricanes won one of four matches at the Hastings Duals at Newington High School. In what was a much more competitive match than the previous meeting between the two teams, New Britain was able to edge out host team Newington by a final score of 48-30. Their remaining match results included a pair of losses to local teams Platt and Wethersfield, as well as a lop-sided 59-10 defeat to state-ranked powerhouse Foran, who went 5-0 on the day to finish in first place at the meet. It also lost to Berlin 46-33 on Jan. 27.

As New Britain approaches the postseason with three meets left on their schedule, they will look to keep their roster intact and continue to grow as a team in the remaining weeks of the regular season.

New Britain will travel to Fermi next on Saturday, Feb. 6 at 10 a.m.

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