PROVIDENCE - It was a couple of banner performances for a pair of local high school wrestlers at the New England High School Wrestling Championships held Saturday in Providence.
Foxboro High junior wrestler Matt Kelley took third-place at 126 pounds and North Attleboro High senior heavyweight wrestler Brennan Sankey finished fifth.
Coming off of his All-State title last weekend in Reading, the third-seeded Kelley opened the New England meet with a first-round bye, then beat Seth Brown of Coventry (R.I.) by a 5-2 decision. In the quarterfinals, Kelley pinned Alvine's Nicholas Milinazzo in 1:33, advancing to the semifinals where Jo Jo Gonzalez of Ellis Tech (Conn.) pinned Kelley in 5:51 of their match.
Kelley faced Brown in a rematch in the consolation semifinals with Kelley again finishing on top by a 5-3 decision to finish third and finish 53-3 for the season.
Sankey won four of his six matches and was one win away from advancing to the round of the elite eight for a second straight year.
Sankey's only losses of the season came at the hands of the two same wrestlers, Jay Carnevale (third place) from St. John's Prep and Josh Sokol (second place) for Hopkinton.
North Attleboro 170-pound wrestler Jack Donahue and Sankey both established single-season records for wins (48).
Sankey (along with Jack Donahue) tied for the most wins in a single season in the history of the program at 48 wins.
Sankey, seeded No. 11, scored a pin at 1:11 in his round of 32 match at 285 pounds over Richard Brown of North Kingstown, R.I.
Sankey scored a 5-2 decision in his second round match over Luke Edmondson of Connecticut. Then he advanced into the quarterfinals and took a dramatic 1-0 decision of Carlos Cabrera of Central Catholic.
Sankey lost his fourth and fifth round matches to Sokol and Carnevale, before taking a 1-0 decision in the consolation round over Bob Heald of Bedford.