Huskies' wrestlers begin to find their identity in loss to Cumberland

Story and photos by Richard W. Dionne, Jr. 
Posted 1/15/23

The Mt. Hope wrestling team fell to Cumberland 50-28 in a Division I match at the high school on Wednesday night. The Huskies are currently 0-3 in D-I and 5-7 overall. The fact that Mt. Hope only had …

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Huskies' wrestlers begin to find their identity in loss to Cumberland


The Mt. Hope wrestling team fell to Cumberland 50-28 in a Division I match at the high school on Wednesday night. The Huskies are currently 0-3 in D-I and 5-7 overall. The fact that Mt. Hope only had to forfeit one match against Cumberland, was a huge win for the team as they have struggled with injuries. They are hoping to find their identity as the season progresses and make a push at the state tournament. It hasn’t been easy for the Huskies have had a new head coach in each of the last three seasons, since winning the state championship under Eric Francis in 2021. Last year they stumbled under coach Mike Perreira. This season the Huskies started strong, winning the Sharon Lombardo tournament, with first year head coach Jefferey Eutsay, who plans to begin building another winner with his young team. 

“We have a great group of guys,” said Coach Eutsay. “They are young and still learning a lot. But they wrestle tough and that’s all that I can ask from them.”

Senior captains Mason Furtado, Cole Rybak, Carson Correia and Elijah Bland a junior, have helped Coach Eutsay get up to speed this season. 

“The captains are great. They step it up every single night,” said Coach Eutsay. “They help out in practice and we’ve been looking for a leader that uses their voice. I think tonight, we actually found it.”  

He is referring to Correia, who he named a co-captain, after coming back from an injury. The 120-pound senior was vocal with his teammates before the match on Wednesday. Then he went out and won his match by pinning Cumberland’s Josh Caetuna in the second period.

“Carson makes a huge difference in the wrestling room,” said Coach Eutsay. “The most important thing is that we have four guys that come in every day and put in a ton of work.”

Furtado, who started his wrestling career at 4 years-old and started for the Huskies all four years, is currently 17-3 after beating Cumberland’s Jake St. Godard by a decision at 145 pounds. 

“Mason’s a great wrestler,” Coach Eutsay said. “He’s ready to go every match. I couldn’t ask for a better captain.” 

Furtado offered his thoughts on the team and coach Eutsay after the match. 

“We have a lot of new kids,” said Furtado. “We just got to get the chemistry down and become more of a family.”

He gave his new head coach a good review. 

“I like him,” said Furtado. “He’s a good guy. He’s getting to know the team really well. It has just been tough transitioning from coach to coach. But this year is going pretty good so far. We are growing and we’re getting there.” 

Assistant coach Ryan Fazzi is still with the team, mentoring the heavy weights. 

“It’s great having him back,” Furtado said. 


Elite wrestlers win against Cumberland

Mt. Hope’s young, elite wrestlers beat their Cumberland opponents. Andrew McCarthy, a sophomore and Ben Martel, a freshman both won by pin. Elijah Bland won his match via forfeit at 132 pounds. 

McCarthy, who wrestles at 126 pounds, pinned the Clipper’s Aidan Baker in the second round. The humble phenom is currently undefeated in state matches and has an overall record of 20-1 this season. Last year he finished second in the state at 113 pounds. Moving up in weight this season wasn’t easy for him. 

“I got heavier over the summer,” he said. “I got fat and happy and then I cut down for the winter. I feel pretty comfortable with my weight now.”

McCarthy feels that he is going to be tested over the next few weeks when he faces a gauntlet of good teams in Hendricken, Coventry and Ponaganset. “I’m going to have a lot harder opponents coming up very soon,” he said.

But Coach Eutsay has confidence in his sophomore. 

“You expect that from a kid like Andrew,” he said of his performance on Wednesday. “He wrestles all year long, puts in a lot of work. This is a way of life for him.”

McCarthy started his wrestling career in sixth grade when he was recruited by his Pop Warner football coach, Jay Grifka, the father of three-time state champion Cory Grifka. He wrestled for Kickemuit, but quickly moved on to the Blackstone Wrestling Club in Cumberland and Beat the Streets, a New England wrestling program based in Providence.

“I just stuck with it,” he said. “It was a lot of travel tournaments. I did a lot of traveling.”

McCarthy is realistic about the prospect of facing Heyden Myers of Coventry, the current 126 pound state champ, in the tournament. 

“I’ll try and give him the best match I can,” McCarthy said. “Just to get to the finals would be amazing.”


Ben Martel, a 220-pound freshman, looks to be a much needed up-and-comer for the Huskies, who graduated heavy weights, Atley Jenness and Pat Pitts, last season. Martel is a large, muscular wrestler that manhandled Cumberland big, Ethan Raposo and pinned him in the first round of their match.  

“He’s about 6 foot 2 inches,” said Furtado. “He’s a big kid. He’s done well this season. He’s going to be really good over the next few years.”

Elijah Bland also has been good for the Huskies, though he didn’t get a chance to wrestle against Cumberland. He lost a close match against Hope last week and placed second at the Natick Duels.

“Elijah is really standing out,” said Furtado. “He’s really good. But he lost to the kid with one leg in the finals of the Natick Duels. The kid had a lot of upper body strength and was really good. Elijah has just had a tough couple of matches.”


Ethan Martel and James Thibaudeau both lost by decision against Cumberland and Luke Solomon, Sebastian Moniz, Keaton Fisher, Spencer Steliga, Cole Rybak, and Demetri Tavares all lost by pin. 

Thibaudeau, a 152 pound junior, sometimes flip-flops with Furtado when the matchups are better. He lost to the Clipper’s Jordan DaCosta by decision in his first match back from a shoulder injury, that has hampered him this season. 

“James is a real athlete,” said Furtado. “He’s tough mentally too. He’s missed a few matches this season with the shoulder. He’s trying to get better.”

James is one of the toughest wrestlers on the team,” echoed Coach Eutsay. “He puts in a lot of work. I’m happy that he’s back.”

Martel a sophomore, who wrestles at 138 pounds, also fell by a decision. 

“Ethan is underrated,” said Furtado. “He’s my drilling partner. A lot of people don’t know him in the state. But over the next few years they will.”

They are all great wrestlers,” said Coach Eutsay of his squad. “We are a big family and that’s the way we keep it. Not one person gets the credit. It’s a team effort.”


Mt. Hope vs Cumberland:

106  Mt. Hope lost by forfeit 

113  Logan Salomon of Mt. Hope was pinned by Cumberland’s Tushiyah Lowe in the first round.

120  Carson Correia of Mt. Hope pinned Josh Caetuna of Cumberland.

126  Andrew McCarthy of Mt. Hope pinned Aidan Baker in the second round.

132  Elijah Bland of Mt. Hope won by forfeit. 

138  Ethan Martel of Mt. Hope lost to Zach Schonhoff by decision. 

145  Mason Furtado of Mt. Hope won by decision over Jake St. Godard.

152  James Thibaudeau of Mt. Hope lost to Jordan DaCosta by decision. 

160  Sebastian Moniz of Mt. Hope was pinned by Dmitriy Dillon. 

170  Keaton Fisher of Mt. Hope was pinned by Luke St. Godard. 

182  Spencer Steliga of Mt. Hope was pinned by James Titre. 

195  Cole Rybak of Mt. Hope was pinned by Shane Raposo. 

220  Ben Martel of Mt. Hope pinned Ethan Raposo. 

Heavy weight  Demetri Tavares of Mt. Hope was pinned by Luke Tougas. 

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