WARWICK — Cumberland and Hendricken looked like they were in a hurry to get home and study when they met in a battle of unbeaten Division I powers on Wednesday night.
In a dual-meet that barely lasted 40 minutes, Cumberland rode eight pins and a major decision victory to a 52-30 victory over the Hawks.
Cumberland and Warwick Veterans are now the lone remaining unbeaten squads in Division I. The Clippers will host the Hurricanes next Wednesday night in a meet that should decide the dual-meet champion.
“I didn’t like this match at all,” Cumberland coach Steve Gordon said when it was over, acknowledging the fact that all five of his losing wrestlers got pinned.
“There was one match all night that didn’t result in a pin,” Hendricken coach Kevin Hennessey pointed out. “They whipped us but this wasn’t a very good match for either team.”
Hendricken was missing one of its best wrestlers, 189-pounder Jeff Techentin, who will sit out one week with an ear infection. By the time the 189 match rolled around, Cumberland held a 40-24 lead. Hendricken would have needed pins in the final three bouts to pull out the victory. Hennessey decided to forfeit the match, which clinched a victory that Cumberland already had in the bag.
The dual-meet turned in the Clippers’ favor way before 189 pounds. Cumberland got its usual three pins at 119, 125 and 130 as the wrecking crew of Shai and Shoneil Lariviere along with Erik Travers made short work of their opponents. That gave the Clippers a 24-6 lead.
Hendricken rebounded briefly when Mike Gelardi caught Jon Maccini and stuck the Clippers’ shoulders to the mat just 56 seconds into the 135-pound match. That could have been a momentum-builder for the Hawks but Hendricken’s Mark Weeden got cradled and stuck by Sean Creamer just 94 seconds into the 140 bout.
“That was big,” Gordon said. “Jon got caught in his match and then we returned the favor in a match they probably were favored to win.”
All seven matches to this point had resulted in pins. Cumberland’s Nick Maccini ended that with a methodical 8-0 win over Ryan McLarney at 145. Maccini displayed the kind of efficient, technically sound wrestling that most people expected to see throughout this dual-meet.
When Cumberland’s Chris Smith pinned Ben Lippitt late in the first period at 152, the Clippers owned a 40-12 lead that appeared insurmountable. But Hendricken got pins from Kyle Aubin and Bret Peltier in the next two matches to make it 40-24.
“We expected to lose at 160 and 171,” Gordon said. “Hendricken is very good there.”
When Hendricken forfeited at 189, Gordon was able to move Tommy Lacroix up to 215, where the solid veteran fell behind 4-1 before reversing Nate Andrews and decking the Hawk with 12 seconds left in the second period.
The meet ended with Hendricken heavyweight Bill Stewart sticking Josh Delannoy in 2:22. People in the stands checked their cell phone clocks and shook their heads, not believing the match was over in 40 minutes.
“I knew it was over at 140,” Gordon said. “Sean has hit that move (a standing cradle) before. We have the type of team that is going to cradle you from all kinds of angles.”
The Clippers also have a terrific trio of the Lariviere twins and Travers that builds early momentum with their pinning ways. The twins are dominating Rhode Island opponents this season, toying with most of their opponents, smiling as they go about the business of pinning shoulders to the mat.
Travers, who essentially replaces former state champ Jaron Parent as the next gun in the lineup after the twins, has stepped up in a hurry in his sophomore season. He is the next leader of this team after the twins leave.
Kevin Hennessey, who possesses an elite newcomer in freshman Matia Alvarez at 112, has seen enough of the twins and will be happy to see them graduate in June. The Hawks’ coach hopes to have his full team intact when Hendricken faces Warwick Veterans in their regular season finale on Feb. 19.
“I just hope I have the night off when Cumberland wrestles Warwick Veterans (next Wednesday),” the coach said. “That match will be fun to watch.”
Cumberland 52, Hendricken 30
103 – Cody Beaudette (CU) pinned Jay Davol 1:39
112 – Matia Alvarez (H) pinned Kris Nordby 2:43
119 – Shai Lariviere (CU) pinned Rob Lanni 3:41
125 – Shoneil Lariviere (CU) pinned Nick Parente 0:54
130 – Erik Travers (CU) pinned Will Warcup 0:46
135 – Mike Gelardi (H) pinned Jon Maccini 0:56
140 – Sean Creamer (CU) pinned Mark Weeden 1:34
145 – Nick Maccini (CU) def. Ryan McLarney 8-0
152 – Chris Smith (CU) pinned Ben Lippitt 1:52
160 – Kyle Aubin (H) pinned Rich Whitman 1:01
171 – Bret Peltier (H) pinned Brandon Ferreri 1:36
189 – Andre Lussier (CU) won by forfeit
215 – Tom Lacroix (CU) pinned Nate Andrews 3:48
285 – Bill Stewart (H) pinned Josh Delannoy 2:22