METHUEN, Mass. — Two Chariho High wrestlers finished fourth at the 56th annual New England championships Sunday at Methuen High.
Senior Kyle Merritt (145) and junior James Dougherty (170) both finished fourth in their weight classes.
Merritt (52-2) finished with a 3-2 record losing to James Lunt of Xavier (Connecticut), 8-5, in the bout for third place.
Merritt trailed 4-2 after the second period. Lunt was able to get an escape and takedown in the third period to build a 7-2 lead. Merritt did get an escape and a takedown to make it 7-5, but could get no closer.
Earlier in the day, Merritt, the Rhode Island state champion, lost in the semifinals to Jake Nicolosi of Haverhill (Massachusetts) via a pin with one second left in the bout. Merritt trailed 4-3 when Nicolosi gained a takedown in the final seconds that led to the pin. Nicolosi went on to win the New England title.
Dougherty (48-6) lost to Joshua Cordio of Nashoba (Massachusetts), 11-4, in the bout for third place. Cordio was able to build a 6-2 lead after two periods with three takedowns.
Dougherty finished 4-2 in the tournament. One of his losses was to Seth Carney of Essex (Vermont), who went on to win the New England title.
This is the fourth consecutive year the Chargers have placed wrestlers in the top six at the New Englands.
Chariho finished tied for 15th in the team standings with 42 points. Danbury (Connecticut) was first with 82.5. Essex was second with 71 and Bishop Hendricken placed third with 70. Coventry finished fifth with 53.
Rhode Island had one New England champion, Coventry's Mason Clarke at 132.
Ponaganset's Michael Joyce (126), Cumberland's Aidan Faria (152) and Hendricken's Nicholas Fine (160) placed second in their weight classes.
— Keith Kimberlin