Trefry Heads to All-State Tournament

Published in the February 25, 2009 issue of The Stow Independent

By Jordana Bieze Foster


Dan Trefry's 29-match winning streak finally came to an end on Friday at the Division 2 state wrestling tournament in North Andover, but the Nashoba Regional captain's amazing season is far from over.

Following a heartbreaking double-overtime 3-2 loss in the second round, the Stow senior dominated the heavyweight consolation bracket, pinning four opponents in a row to finish third overall and secure a favorable seed in this weekend's all-state tournament in Salem. In addition to his third-place medal, Trefry also took home the “Most Falls” award, as the one wrestler in the tournament with the highest number of pins (five) in the least amount of time (10 minutes).

“I had no idea I'd do that well this season,” said Trefry, who is now 33-1. “Everything just seemed to click.”

Qualifying for the all-state tournament for two years in a row, as Trefry has now done, is an even more impressive accomplishment in light of the challenges this season has presented. Never mind that Trefry, who wrestled at 215 pounds last season and through the summer, had to contend this season with opponents up to 60 pounds heavier than he is. That was nothing compared to the horrific December the Chieftains endured, with weather-related power outages and postponements compounded by the sudden death of teammate Christopher Reusch on Dec. 14. In January, as many other teams were hitting their stride, the Chieftains were still getting their bearings.

But at the first tournament of the season, the Framingham Holiday Tournament, Trefry surprised everyone by winning the heavyweight class. Then he just kept winning, all the way through January and into February.

Ultimately, the team followed suit, finishing with a 13-9 record and the program's fifth consecutive winning season. At the Division 2 Central sectional meet, in which Trefry won his weight class, six other Chieftain wrestlers finished in the top six: sophomore Josue Guerra (2nd, 135 lbs), junior Andrew Holfinger (4th, 171), senior captain Matt Atwood (5th, 125), junior Mike Vittorioso (6th, 215), Stow junior Brad Lewis (6th, 152), and freshman Adam Rivas (6th, 119). Guerra and Holfinger also qualified for the Division 2 state tournament along with Trefry.

“This was the toughest year I've ever had coaching,” said head coach Matt Schiller. “I didn't really know if we would go .500, but I think toward the end the kids really wanted to get that winning record. After what we've been through, I have to say it was a successful season.”

Even Trefry's winning streak was at times something of a mixed blessing, said Schiller, who as a former high school wrestler himself can speak from experience.

“Dan was under a lot of pressure,” he said. “My sophomore season, I was up to 18 wins, and I felt the pressure at 18, so I know he was feeling it at 29 wins. I think he actually felt some relief after the loss.”

Sure, as the 6th-ranked heavyweight wrestler in the state according to MassWrestling.com, Trefry would have liked to have a shot at 2nd-ranked Mike Gregory of Greater Lowell, who ultimately finished first in North Andover. But he's not dwelling on it.

“Sometimes things don't work out the way you'd like,” he said. “You just have to keep going.”

At the all-state meet this weekend, he'll do just that. He'll wear his lucky Chieftains jacket and shorts, the same ones he's worn before every match this season. And he'll wear his lucky shoes, with the initials “F.D.” inked on every visible piece of shoelace and “FD RIP” on the right ankle, in memory of 2007-8 Nashoba wrestling captain Frank DeMeo, who died in a car accident just over a year ago.

“Frankie's definitely been a big inspiration for me this whole season,” Trefry said. “At the Framingham meet, I was in the middle of a tough match, and my coach said to me, 'Just remember who's up there watching.' Thinking about that made me want to work even harder. I'd like to think Frankie would be proud of me.”


Copyright 2008 Jordana Foster – 24 Kirkland Dr, Stow, MA – Email: – Fax: (815) 346-5239