NORTH BERWICK — A beefed up Noble Wrestling Invitational provided a mid-season look at some of the top high school teams and individual wrestlers in southern Maine. Based on two days of action featuring over 35 teams – including squads from New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island – several southern Maine teams have the talent and depth to make a run at state championships in February.

Bishop Hendricken of Rhode Island won the team title with 203 points, edging Massabesic of Waterboro by three points. The team championship came down to the final two matches on Thursday afternoon.

When Massabesic 220-pound finalist Jared Breton was defeated by Bonny Eagle’s Kaden Cyr, 8-0, that opened the door for Bishop Hendricken heavyweight Joseph Church to wrap up the team title, which he did in convincing fashion with a first-period pin.

Massabesic’s only individual champion was Dominic Bubar, who controlled the 160-pound final with a 12-2 win against Jack Arpey of Mount Mansfield (Vermont) Union. The Mustangs, under first-year head coach Joe Eon, had six other wrestlers place in the top six, including runners-up Breton, Isaac Boulard at 113 pounds and Jack Harriman at 145.

“Yeah, we can win a team title,” said Bubar. “We have athletic wrestlers. If we all put the work in and show off we can come out on top.”

Host Noble finished third with 186.5 points. The Knights had three individual winners: freshman Brady Ouellette at 106 pounds, sophomore Kaden Dustin at 138, and senior two-time state champion Derek Cote at 152.


“This meet is a development period for our whole team,” Cote said. “Our whole Noble wrestling community. Because now we get to see what we can do as a team in a tournament like this because at the end of the day the end goal is a team state title. I saw a lot of good things but a lot of improvements need to be made as a team and we all know that and we’re going to take every opportunity we can to bust our tails and get better every day.”

Ouellette came from a 5-0 deficit to take a 7-5 lead before pinning Coy Lyford, wrestling for Spaulding High from Barre, Vermont, eliciting a loud roar of approval from the home fans.

“I honestly couldn’t hear it. I was too in the moment. I put myself in a bad position and I knew I could make up for it,” said Ouellette, unbeaten so far this season.

Dustin showed veteran savvy to stymie Elias Kalat, another Spaulding wrestler in an 8-2 win. Cote led just 2-1 after one period against Lucas Libby of Mountain Valley, the reigning Class B champ at 152, before working a second-period pin.

“In the first 30 seconds both my contacts came off my eyes. I couldn’t see a thing,” said Cote, who is legally blind because of very limited depth perception and peripheral vision. “He was a rugged kid. He had me thinking a little bit at the end of the first period and I was like, I need to turn it up a little bit now.”

For Class B Wells, which finished fourth with 149 points, the main objective is to get healthy. Sickness kept six Warriors out of the tourney. Still, Wells had five wrestlers place in the top four, including 132-pound champ Dyllan Davis.


Camden Hills (147 points), which competes in Class A North, showed similar depth with five wrestlers in the top five led by 126-pound champion Julian Henderson.

Sanford was sixth with 143 points paced by 113-pound champion James Blood and 195-pound winner Canton Hill.

Blood, a senior, who placed third at the New England Championships and second at the Virginia Beach Nationals as a junior, was sharp and in control against Massabesic’s Boulard.

“I’ve been working on all of my technique, just working on what I need to work on to be where I want to be later in the season,” Blood said. “Hopefully to win it all. I want to win nationals. I want to win New Englands.”

Hill, a sophomore trailed James Dube of Mattanawcook Academy, 10-0, with time running out, when he slapped on a head-and-arm and threw Dube to the mat, eventually turning him for a pin with 33 seconds remaining.

Other individual winners from southern Maine were Ayden Cofone of Windham/Gray-New Gloucester/Westbrook at 120 pounds and Shea Farrell of Mt. Ararat/Brunswick at 170. Both won their final matches with first-period pins. Farrell was making his season debut after recovering from a hand injury suffered during football season and having just one week of wrestling practice. Farrell pinned four of his five opponents.

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