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Wrestling Finals A Night Of Firsts

     It turned out to be a night of firsts at Cole Field House as the State Wrestling Tournament came to an exciting close during the championship round.  Leonardtown, Reservoir, Tuscarora, and Winters Mill all crowned their first state wrestling champions in school history.  In the race for the teams titles, Reservoir bested LaPlata for the Class 3A/4A title 106-80 and Southern-Garrett earned 135.5 points to Glenelg's 104 for the Class 1A/2A crown.  Check out the links above for complete brackets and team scores.

     In addition to the something new, there was something old as well.  Urbana's Adam Krop earned his third state title by winning the Class 3A/4A title at 125 pounds. On the Class 1A/2A side at 152 pounds, Southern-Garrett's Brutus Scheffel won his fourth state title, putting him in a select group of only four individuals to do so in state tournament history.

     Re-live the excitement of this year's tournament thanks to Verizon FiOS1 who taped the championship finals for broadcast on Monday, March 15th at 7:30 PM.  Go to Channel 1 on your Verizon FiOS TV and appreciate the show of skills and talent over and over again.  Enjoy too, Lem Satterfield's blog from his matside perch at Cole Field House which follows below.  No one knows wrestling like Lem.

     The MPSSAA is deeply appreciative of the patience shown by our schools and their communities and the cooperation that we received in order to complete ALL of the postseason tournaments for wrestling.  We must also recognize the tireless efforts and flexibility of the State Wrestling Committee as their contributions were key to not only rescheduling events but running them as well.  Last but not least, we would also like to thank our friends at the University of Maryland's Campus Recreation Services for their invaluable cooperation and assistance with holding an event of this magnitude at their facilities.


News and Notes By Lem Satterfield

Four-time champ Brutus Scheffel Leads Southern Garrett To Second Class 2A-1A Crown

When the finals seconds ticked down at the end of his 10-3, 152-pound Class 2A-1A state championship victory over Glenelg senior Mike O'Leary, Southern Garrett senior, Brutus Scheffel, calmly allowed the referee to raise his right hand into the air and turn him slowly about so that his full accomplishment could be appreciated by the fans standing in ovation at The University of Maryland's Cole Field House.

For not only had the West Virginia-bound Scheffel used three pins to reach the title bout, where he put the final touches on a 40-1 record, but he also became only Maryland's fourth, four-time state titist, joining Aberdeen's Matt Slutzky, Owings Mills' Steve Kessler and Hereford's Josh Asper.

But to some, the gesture of celebration had not lasted long enough, given the magnitude of Scheffel's acheivement. So Scheffel was directed to go back out and absorb the fans' delight, which he did, with a more appropriate, high amplitude, somersault to a back flip that sent his fans into a frenzy.

Scheffel was joined by junior repeat champion teammates, Lex Ozias (140, 39-1) and his brother, Bubba Scheffel (160, 39-0), as well as senior first-time titlist, Davey Stewart (103, 30-2), with junior Ryan Bennett (189, 17-1) being a runner-up for the second straight year.

Their Maryland-record five finalists paced the Rams to their second consecutive Class 2A-1A state crown, 135.5-104, over second-place Glenelg of Howard County.

Bubba Scheffel won his 86th consectuve match when he nailed down his fourth pin of the tournament, in 4 minutes, 39 seconds over Middletown's Judd Ziegler, who entered the match with a record of 41-2.

Bubba Scheffel's last loss a 3-2 decision against Mardela's repeat state titlist, Lester Andrews, this on Scheffel's way to placing third at states as a freshman.

Ozias used a 52-second fall and two technical falls to reach the finals, where he controlled Rising Sun's Anthony Cimorosi (29-4) on the way to winning, 9-3. Stewart had the most dramatic victory, overcoming an early 4-0 deficit against Patuxent's Zach Pilkington (29-4), whom he out-scored, 14-2, the rest of the way for the 14-6 victory.

Stewart, who used to pins and a technical fall to reach the finals, broke a 2-2 second-period tie against Pilkington when he cradled the sophomore to his back. From there, he poured on the intensity and never looked back.

Southern Garrett emerged victorious from the Class 2A-1A West, which produced 11 of the tournament's 14 state champions, including Winters Mill's Myzar Mendoza (125, 31-4) and Justin Kozera (215, ), Catoctin's Seth Chilson (119, 33-1), North Carroll's Mason Goretsas (130, 37-1), Middletown's repeat state titlist Chad Strube (135, 42-1), Northern-Garrett's repeat champion Adam Moranduzzo (145, 31-3) and South Carroll's Sam Wright (285, 34-1).
The other Class 2A-1A champs were repeat titlist, Tony Farace (112, 35-1) of Oakland Mills, St. Michael's Jordan Gowe (171, 43-1), and, Parkside's Zack Eure (189, 37-1).

Mendoza became his program's first titlist, and Kozera, it's second under coach John Lowe, whose nephew is Gowe.

Mendoza scored a first-round technical fall, but then had to ground out decisions of 4-1, 6-3, and, 6-3, yet again -- the last over Brunswick's Tyler Bartholomew. Kozera had three straight pins before taking down Bel Air's Justin Cole, 7-3, in his championship bout.

Gowe also won some tough bouts to reach the championship match, this, after scoring a first-round technical fall. His subsequent victories were by, 5-2, and, 5-3, before grinding through a 3-2 title-bout win over favored Justin Wright (33-5) of Mountains Ridge.
Chilson pinned twice before blanking Rising Sun's Adam Heffelfinger, 3-0, in the semifinals, setting up a rematch with Francis Scott Key's Shawn Eyler (31-4), against whom he scored a late reversal for a 7-6 decision. The score was the same margin by which Chilson edged Eyler earlier.

A runner-up as a sophomore, Goretsas earned his second straight crown by controlling Easton's sophomore Ben Culver (35-4) on the way to a 6-1 victory. Goretsas had pinned all three opponents to reach the championship bout, improving his remarkable mark to 37-1.

A runner-up as a freshman who was fourth as a sophmoore, Strube earned a rematch with Glenelg's state runner-up, Brendan Conway (42-2). Strube had beaten Conway in last year's semifinal by a point before winning his title bout.

After using a pin and a technical fall to earn a championship berth, Strube required an overtime dump to turn Conway to his back for the fall in 6:31.

Moranduzzo earned two technical falls, a 9-3, semifinal victory over Surrattsville's previously unbeaten Joseph Rollins (16-1), who finished third, and then edged Liberty's Logan Yox (39-3) by the score of 7-4 in order to celebrate his second straight crown.

Bennett was favored to take the 189-pound championship in a battle of juniors, but Parksides's Zack Eure (37-1), after having placed third a year ago, was equally motivated.

Eure was unbeaten a year ago before being relegated to the consolation rounds, but returned to steamroll his first couple of opponents on two pins. A 4-1 semifinal victory over eventual fourth-place finisher, Alex Schuster of North Carroll set up Eure for a relative easy, 9-4, victory over Bennett.

Wright nailed down fall over his first three opponents, raising his pin total to 27 on the year. But the senior had to go the distance against Rising Sun's tough, Andrew Baranski (33-5), earning a 3-1 decision.

Farace trailed 2-0 against Francis Scott Key's Steve Smith (31-2) when he cradled Smith for three nearfall points and a 3-2 lead late in the third period.

But when Farace received his second warning for stalling, that tied the match for overtime, where the Scorpions' sophomore suprised Smith with a quick shot for the 5-3 victory.

Reservoir of Howard County Completes Season of Firsts With Initial Class 4A-3A State Crown

Reservoir's Gators of Howard County, coached by Ryan Kanaskie, entered the weekend's Class 4A-3A Tournament having enjoyed a season of firsts.

The Gators won their first county and Class 4A-3A East Regional Tournament titles, as well as their initial Class 4A-3A East dual meet and Class 4A-3A state dual meet crowns.

On Saturday night, at the University of Maryland's Cole Field House in College Park, the Gators not only crowned their first state champion in junior 145-pounder, Mark Colabucci, but Colabucci completed the program's first undefeated season by going 44-0, and paced his squad to its first-ever, Class 4A-3A state tournament title by easily out-distancing runner-up LaPlata of Charles County, 106-80.

Colabucci used two pins, an injury default, and a 5-3, title-bout decision over Laplata's Connar Zimmerman (29-8) to add his first state title to the county and regional tournament championships he had earned earlier in the year.

Colabucci was joined by senior state runner-up, Mike Mullens (152, 40-5), junior state runner-up Josh Hamilton (285, 40-5), senior fourth-place finisher, Josh Knox (112, 35-8), and senior fourth-place finisher Danny Poore (119, 37-9) as wrestlers who placed for the Gators.

Although Mullens dropped his title-bout decision, 3-1, to Leonardtown's Martez Allen (36-5), his program's first-ever state champion, he did so only after earning a first-round, 14-2 decision, an overtime, quarterfinal victory over Chopticon's previously unbeaten, Stephen Cannon (36-1), and edging Annapolis' Jeremy Byrd, 15-11, to reach the finals.

Mullens' were important points, along with those from Hamilton.

Hamilton nailed down falls in 22, 78, and, 42 seconds to make the championship, where he was decked by Hereford senior Taylor Gload (41-1) in 3 minutes, 11 seconds -- but only after nearly pinning Gload in the first period.

The Class 4A-3A East Region, won by the Gators, produced seven of the 14 state champions, with North County's Pat Downey (171) and Pat Carey (189) going 34-0, and, 39-0, respectively.

Downey earned his second crown, this after going 37-0 at Loch Raven for last year's 2A-1A crown. Carey had been a runner-up twice at 189, but didn't let the crown escape him this season.

Also from the Class 4A-3A East, Centennial sophomore Nathan Kraisser (112, 38-2) and Old Mill junior Ron Vaughters (140, 44-2) earned their second straight crowns, and Arundel's Maryland-bound senior, Tyler Goodwin (130, 37-1), and Wilde Lake' sophomore, Alex Polonsky (103, 35-3), their first.

Downey pinned twice before earning a 5-2, semifinal victory over Dulaney's previously unbeaten, eventual fourth-place finisher, Brandon Phillips (43-2) in a rematch of an overtime victory by Downey a year ago.

In the finals, Downey had to face Chesapeake's state runner-up, Chris Urps (33-5), whom he had beaten three times earlier. But this time, it was tougher, as Downey had to ground out the closest decision of all, 4-3, over Urps.

Carey won a battle of state runners-up, 5-3, over Walt Whitman's Taylor Leighton (36-2), scoring a takedown with 23 seconds remaining to hold off Leighton for the 5-3 decision.

Kraisser was more dominant than ever, using a pin, a 16-0 technical fall, and a 16-2 semifinal major decision over Quince Orchard's Eli Bienstock (32-2) in a rematch of last year's 103-pound final. Kraisser then breezed to a 14-1 championship victory over Perry Hall's Shaun Murphy (28-3).

A transfer from Baltimore private school power, Mount St. Joseph, Goodwin had won tournament crowns at the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association and private schools tournaments, and had also been a two-time National Preps Tournament runner-up.

Goodwin had no problems at Cole Field House, earning a first-period pin, consecutive technical falls of 17-0, and, 16-0, and blanking Magruder's previously unbeaten Jordan Tolbert (39-1) by 12-0 for his crown. Tolbert had pinned three straight opponents to earn the right to face Goodwin.

Vaughters led, 8-2, when he was called for illegally slamming Laplata senior Nick Romero to the mat with 12 seconds left in their title bout.

What happened next, however, drew a standing ovation from the crowd.

Although Romero was genuinely hurt, and could not continue, his coach, Todd Sharp, had him rise to his feet, shake hands with Vaughters to restart the match, and allow the remaining time to tick off of the clock, giving Vaughters the victory.

Vaughters was gracious, realizing his mistake, and the two wrestlers fell into an embrace of sportsmanship.

"That kid was a real man for doing what he did," said Vaughters. "And I thank him and his coach for doing it. They really didn' t have to, and I'm really thankful to them for that."

Polonsky had pinned his way into the finals, where he won a back-and-forth match up, 11-6, over Northern of Calvert County's Brant Leadbetter (35-4).

Polonsky became the second state champion for Wildecats' coach Azmar Hagler, who also coached Zach Brown (215) to a state title in 2007.

Polonsky is also only the second-ever sophomore state champion in the Wilde Cat's history, joining Andy Brown, a winner of titles as a sophomore and a senior in 1987, and, '89.

Urbana's Adam Krop (125, 37-2) earned his third straight state title after having placed third as a sophomore, but it was the most difficult championship run of them all.

The Princeton University-bound Krop pinned his first opponent, but then had to get past former Mount St. Joseph wrestler and private schools runner-up, Alex Rice, of Chesapeake, 5-1.

Krop's next match was against former state champ, Kevin Beck (35-5), whom he edged, 5-2, after having trailed early, 2-0.

Krop had to overcome yet another 2-0 deficit against Arundel sophomore, Tyler Goodwin (35-2) in the finals, tying their bout at 2-2 with a second-period set of two nearfall points, and then, scoring a third-period reversal to overcome a 3-2 deficit for the 4-3 decision.

Krop had scored falls in his previous two state championship finals, but this one was by far the most challenging.

The most unlikely title run was by Seneca Valley junior, Bernard Wolley (215, 33-2), a third-year wrestler who scored upset, after upset to reach the finals.

Wolley earned a 7-5 quarterfinal victory over Catonsville's previously unbeaten, Tyler Weedon (37-1), who had twice placed third at states.

Wolley then overcame Howard County champion, Alvin Harris (30-7), earning a 6-3 decision over the Wilde Lake grappler.

But the biggest win of them all was in the finals, where Wolley scored an overtime takedown for a 5-3 decision over previously unbeaten state champ, Mwanza Wamulumba (20-1).

Damascus' Zeke Gammill (160, 28-3) had lost his last two matchups with Quince Orchard's Reed Neubaum (35-2), but he ground out a 3-2 decision in their title bout to even their series at 2-2, winning when it counted most.

The 135-pound champion's season was one of redemption, during which Tanner Wrublik (36-4) completed a journey that included overcoming personal problems, and turning himself into an A-student after transferring to Tuscarora High in Frederick County.

Wrublik pinned his first opponent, earned a 3-2, quarterfinal victory over Clarksburg's Chris Williams (36-3), and then edged South River's eventual fourth-place finisher, Curtis Taylor (37-4) by 1-0 in the ultimate tiebreaker.

In the finals, however, Wrublik came up with a fall with two seconds left in the first period, pinning Old Mill sophomore, Salaman Riddell (33-7) -- this after Riddell had earned a 5-2, overtime victory over former state champion and two-time finalist, Peter Tatanish, of Urbana.

Magruder junior Parke Overmiller (119, 34-3) pinned twice before downing Poore, 10-4, in the semifinals and turning his attention to repeat state runner-up, Cameron Kirby (37-9) of River Hill.

Also a fourth-place finisher at one point, Kirby had beaten Poore twice, pinning him for the Howard County title, and edging him, 10-8, at the regionals.

A transfer from Georgetown Prep, who was fifth at private shools states, Overmiller was simply too much for Kirby, whom he downed, 7-2, for the crown and jumped into a crowd of supporters in celebration.

Southern Still Ahead Entering Class 2A-1A Finals

The Sothern Garrett Rams did not have a wrestler competing in the consolation finals, but their Maryland-record five finalists -- three-time state champ, Brutus Scheffel (152), state champs Lex Ozias (140) and Bubba Scheffel (160), state runner-up Ryan Bennett (189) and returning third-place finisher Davey Stewart (103) already had staked them to a huge lead over runner-up Glenelg.

In third-place bouts, Bel Air's Jeff Taylor (103) edged Glenelg's Ryan Carter, 7-4, Patterson Mill's Zach Cullison (112) major decisioned Edmonson's Akil Bohanan, 10-2, and South Carroll's Chris Wampler (119) got by Rising Sun's Adam Heffelfinger, 4-2.

At 125, Harford Tech's Brandon Gain major decioned Glenelg's Nick Caffrey, 10-2, Rising Sun's Jason Robinson major decisoned Century's Chris Antrobus, 17-4, Carver Tech's Tyler Hinton (135) major decisioned Fallston's Austin Miller, 14-5, and Bel Air's Anton Lawhon edged Central's Kurt Buckingham, 3-2.

At 145, Surrattsville' s Joseph Rollins got by Williamsport's Austin Shoemaker, 5-1, last year's state runner-up, Gus Mohlhenrich (152) of Winters Mills did the same to Easton's Caleb Seufert, 5-1, and Central's Bryan Kasper (160) pinned Owings Mills Larry Johnson in 2:48.

Hammond's Sam Nuss (171) won, 6-2, over Bel Air's Tom Kuegler, Easton's Scott Jurius (189) edged North Carroll's Alex Shuster, 3-1, Century's Caleb Andrews (215) blanked Fort Hill's Glen Vincent, 14-0, and, and Gwen Park's Trey Seymour (285) downed Queen Anne's Jeremy Keith, 15-4.

Gators Still Ahead Entering Class 4A-2A Finals

Reservoir still led, 102-80, entering the finals after getting fourth place finishes from Josh Knox (112) and Danny Poore (119). Their finalists, Mark Colabucci (152), Mike Mullens (152) and Josh Hamilton (285) were about to compete.

In third-place bouts, Broadneck's Colin Harrell (103) downed Urbana's Nick Frank, 9-1, Quince Orchard's Eli Bienstock (112) edged Knox, 4-2, in overtime; Northwest's Michael Henning (119) edged Poore, 4-3, and Northern Calvert's Quintin Leadbetter (125) surprised state champ, Kevin Beck, of Atholton with a pin, avenging an earlier loss in the tournament.

Also, Walt Whitman's Eric Harder (130) decisioned Hereford Steve Sparks, 8-3, Urbana's state champ Peter Tatanish (135) handled South River's Curtis Taylor, 9-0, and Northern Calvert's Eric Hoffman (140) defeated Springbrook's Joseph Galeano, 12-6.

In the middleweights, Tuscarora's Austin Wenzlaff (145) blanked Walt Whitman's Andrew Follman, 5-0, Sherwood's Josh Lowy (152) major decisioned Annapolis' Jeremy Byrd, 10-2, and Huntingtown's Hunter Rowe (160) got by Stephen Decatur's Bryce Smith, 4-3.

At 171, Thomas Johnson's Marc Nielson edged Dulaney's Brandon Phillips, 5-2, and Wilde Lake's 189-pound Zathy Ndiang -- who regularly goes at 171 -- edged North Point's Anthony Zoscak, 4-3, and former state runner-up, Danny Lee (215) of Walt Whitman edged Urbana's Mike Dailey to avenge an earlier loss in the tournament.

At 285, Leonardtown's Mark Bohanan decisioned C.H. Flowers' Isaiah Shelton, 10-3, for third place.

Reservoir Extends Lead over LaPlata Entering Finals

Reservoir's 285-pound junior Josh Hamilton had lost three times to River Hill's Brandon Barnes (39-5), his opponent in Saturday's Class 4A-3A semifinals.

"In the [Howard County] finals, he beat me, 6-4, and he beat me in the dual meet tournament, and he beat me last year," said Hamilton, who is 40-4. "But you know what? I told myself, 'You know what? I know I'm going to get him.' This was my last chance to get him, and I said, 'I know that I'm going to get him this time.'"

But Hamilton emerged victorious only after being in trouble himself. Hamilton countered a double-under hook by Barnes and tossed the River Hill wrestler to his back. Soon, however, Hamilton was rolled into danger and staring up at the lights and in danger of being decked himself.

"He came in with the double-hooks, and I just grabbed him and tossed him. Then, he threw me on my back, and I fought back and put him back on his back. I stuck him, and then I went crazy," said Hamilton. "I had three pins in the regions and one in the county. I've only gone about six minutes in five matches."

It was Hamilton's third, first-period fall of the tournament, joined with a 25-second first-round fall, and an 88-second one in the quarterfinals. Hamilton has 37 falls on the season.

"I just got it in my head that I knew that I was going to come in here and that I wanted to make the finals," said Hamilton.

More importantly, in victory, the junior joined teammates Mark Colabucci (145, 43-0) and Mike Mullens (152, 40-4), as they increased their lead to 102-76 over second place LaPlata after the semifinal round.

The Gators also received consolation semifinal pins from Josh Knox (112, 35-7) and Danny Poore (119, 37-8), who are wrestling to place third or fourth.

"Josh got a nice little toss. That's where we like to be in matches. Mullens has had huge tournament, and he's got his focus for tonight, after working with Mark all season. And we got a forfeit to Mark, even though we wanted that match. But we'll take the bonus points for the team race," said Gators' coach Ryan Kanaskie.

"[Laplata's] Connar Zimmerman is going to be the real deal against Mark in the finals," said Kanaskie. "Mark beat him 6-2 in a dual meet, but it's going to be a war."

Zimmerman (29-7) is joined in the finals by Nick Romero (140, 27-4), who will meet Old Mill's defending Class 4A-3A champ, Ron Vaughters (43-2).

Two-time state champ, Adam Krop (125, 36-2) of Urbana, and state champs, Nathan Kraisser (112, 37-2), Pat Downey (171, 33-0, 27 pins) of North County and Mwanza Wamulumba (215, 20-0) all advanced to their respective title bouts.

Also moving forward was three-time state finalist, Pat Carey (189, 38-0), who nailed down his 35th pin -- his third of the tournament -- to improve to 38-0. Carey will face returning runner-up Taylor Leighton (36-1).

Krop overcame an early, 2-1, deficit to defeat Atholton's state champ, Kevin Beck (34-4) by 5-2 in the semifinals, earning a berth against stellar sophomore, Tyler Goodwin (35-1) of Arundel.

Goodwin, who used a 60-second pin and technical falls of 16-1, and, 16-0, to reach the finals, scored a 10-1 major decision over Beck in last week's Class 4A-3A East Regional finals.

Goodwin is the younger brother of University of Maryland-bound senior, Frankie Goodwin (130, 36-1), who has twice beaten Krop during their career.

Frankie used a first-period pin and technical falls of 17-0, and, 16-0, to reach the title bout, where he'll face Magruder's unbeaten Jordan Tolbert (39-0), who used two pins and a 16-0 technical fall to advance.

Wamulumba is only a fourth-year wrestler, but if he defeats Seneca Valley's Brad Wolley (32-2), he can become Maryland's first, repeat titlist in his weight class.

Two other solid performers have been Wilde Lake's Alex Polonsky (103, 34-3) and River Hill's Cameron Kirby (119, 37-8).

Polonsky pinned all three opponents for the right to face Northern of Calvert's Brant Leadbetter (35-3), and Kirby out-scored his three opponents by a combined, 23-6.

Kirby faces Magruder's Parke Overmiller (33-3), who pinned twice and scored a 10-4 decision. 

Old Mill moved Vaughters and Salaman Riddell (33-6), who will face Tuscarora's Tanner Wrublik (35-4).

The 160-pound finalists are both from Montgomery County, with Quince Orchard's Reed Neubaum (35-1) facing Damascus' Zeke Gammill (27-3).

Neubaum defeated Gammill in the county and Class 4A-3A West Regional finals, improving his record against the Damascus wrestler to 2-1.

Hereford's Taylor Gload (285) rose to 40-1 with his 2-0, semifinal shutout of Stephen Decatur's Dylan Drew (33-4), whom he defeated for the third time in their careers, even as Drew was last year's third-place state finisher.

Drew lost his next bout, and is wrestling for fifth or sixth place.

Defending Class 2A-1A Champ Southern Garrett Puts Five In Finals, Leads Runner-up Glenelg

Three-time Class 2A-1A champ, Brutus Scheffel (152, 39-1), state champs Lex Ozias (140, 38-1) and Bubba Scheffel (160, 38-0), state runner-up Ryan Bennett (189, 17-0) and returning third-place finisher, Davey Stewart  (103, 29-2) all reached Saturday's finals, pushing their lead over second place Glenelg to 116.5 to 86 after the semifinal round. (Check Live Scores For Updates)

Glenelg, which was dethroned by Southern last year after being champs in 2008, pushed forward state runner-up Brendan Conway (135, 42-2) and Mike O'Leary (152, 41-5), with Conway earning a rematch with of last year's semifinal loss to eventual Class 2A-1A champ, Chad Strube (41-1) in what should be an excellent bout.

The Scheffels have pinned all three of their opponents, Stewart has two pins and a technical fall, Ozias, one pin and two technical falls, and Bennett, two pins and a decision.

Winners of the Class 2A-1A state duals in 2009, the Rams were beaten in their own Class 2A-1A regional title meet by South Carroll of Carroll County, which, in turn, was eliminated by Glenelg in the Class 2A-1A state dual semifinals.

"We came down to make a statement. We wanted to show that we're still a good team. Five out of five in the semi's is pretty sweet. Man, they just all came through and did their thing," said Rams coach David Taylor, whose Rams won two, head-to-head matches against Glenelg in the semifinals.

Stewart pinned Glenelg's Ryan Carter, and Bennett beat the Gladiators' David Pruitt, 10-4.

"With Glenelg, I mean, that put us way ahead -- put our guys in the finals, and kept their guys out of the finals," said Taylor. "I think that we're up by 30 or 40 points right now."

Brutus Scheffel is attempting to become Maryland's fourth, four-time champ, joining Aberdeen's Matt Slutzky, Owings Mill's Steve Kessler and Hereford's Josh Asper.

Brutus Scheffel will face O'Leary, a 1-0 winner over Winter Mill's Gus Mohlhenrich, who was a state runner-up last year.

"Brutus going for his fourth championship is a great thing, and we're excited for him," said Taylor. "He's pumped up for it, and I'm excited for him. We're looking forward to it, and we're looking forward to a good round."

State champs Tony Farace (103, 34-1) of Oakland Mills, Mason Goretsas (130, 36-1) of North Carroll, Strube of Middletown and Adam Moranduzzo (145, 30-3) of Northern Garrett all reached their second straight state finals.

Strube was also a runner-up as a freshman, and placed fourth at states as a sophomore.

Farace, who has two pins and a 12-0 major decision in the tournament, will face Francis Scott Key's Steve Smith (31-1).

A three-time finalist, having been runner-up as a sophomore, Goretsas has three pins, and will meet Easton's Ben Culver (35-3).

Moranduzzo has two technical falls and a 9-3, semifinal decision over Surrattsville's Joseph Rollins (14-1). He faces Logan Yox (38-7) of Liberty.

The Class 2A-1A West Region, which produced the Southern Garrett wrestlers, along with Goretsas, Strube and Moranduzzo, looks particularly strong in the tournament.

The West Region has at least one finalist in every weight class. There are West Region wrestlers as both finalists at 119, 125, 145 and 160, and there is at least one West Region finalist at 103, 112, 130, 135, 140,  152, 171, 189, 215 and 285.

At 125 pounds, Winters Mill's Myzar Mendoza (30-4) downed defending Class 2A-1A champ, Kemper Baker (37-5) by 6-3 to reach the finals.

Mendoza takes on Brunswick's Tyler Bartholomew (27-2), who reached the finals on two pins and a technical fall.

Catoctin's Seth Chilson (119, 32-1) meets Francis Scott Key's Shawn Eyler (32-3), who pinned South Carroll's Chris Wampler (29-5) to even his series record against him at 2-2.

Bubba Scheffel meets Middletown's Judd Ziegler (41-2), who made the finals with a 2-1 decision over Kent County's Kyle Thomas (37-3).

Mount Ridge 171-pounder Jason Wright (33-4) has Jordan Gowe (42-1) of St. Michaels, and Winters Mill's Justin Kozera (215, 35-2) will face Bel Air's Justin Cole (42-1).

The last West Region wrestler is South Carroll's 285-pound Sam Wright (33-1) whose falls in 25, and, 39 seconds preceded his semifinal pin of 2 minutes, 25 seconds.

Wright will go after the state title against Rising Sun's Andrew Baranski (33-5).

Old Mill's Salaman Riddell UpsetsUrbana's Class 4A-3A State Champ, Peter Tatanish In OT

One week after placing third at the Anne Arundel County Tournament, Old Mill sophomore Salamon Riddell (135, 32-6) appeared to be well on his way to capturing the Class 4A-3A crown.

Riddell was ahead, 7-1, against South River's Curtis Taylor early in the third period, only to stand up into a cement-job, pinning maneuver before getting decked.

"Losing like that in my mind was unacceptable, getting pinned in the third period when I was up by six. So I went to work in practice with my teammate, Ron Vaughters on getting better at finishing matches," said Riddell of Vaughers, who dethroned Tatanish for last year's 135-pound state title.

"Ron told me a lot about him, and I just went out there 100 percent," said Riddell. "And I guess that it showed today."

Riddell led early, 1-0, but was taken down on the edge of the mat by Tatanish with 10 seconds left in regulation.

At that point, he looked over at his coaches, Dan Youngblood and assistant Matt Eveleth.

"I looked over there and they said 'You got to get up, if you want to make the finals," said Riddell. "They said, 'You got to get up, and show us something.'"

Riddell did that and more, standing to his feet to tie the match at 2-2, and nearly scoring a takedown -- all with action that began with six seconds left.

"I just did a regular stand up, but I actually thought I had the two for the takedown," said Riddell. "But all that mattered is that I got into overtime. And my coaches told me to go for it and give it all that I had."

Again, Riddell responed. An escape in the second period of overtime had him ahead, 3-2. Riddell would have been content to ride out Tatanish in the third for the victory, but he got a couple of nearfall points before the final buzzer sounded for good measure.

"Right there, I was just trying to hold him down like I did in the second period of regulation, but he tried to do some move, and he wound up going to his back because I kept my hips up," said Riddell. "I learned that you have to go the whole six minutes, like I didn't do against Curtis Taylor, but I did this time."

Riddell credited Vaughters, not only for his scouting report on Tatanish, but for generally drilling him in practice. Vaughters, for his part, decisioned Northern of Calvert's Eric Hoffman, 5-3, to reach the finals for the second straight year.

"This last week, it was practing Monday. We practiced together. We would go outside for runs, come back and drill, and do sprints and conditioning," said Vaughters. "We go live, and when I went live with Salaman, he's a strong kid. It's hard to take him down, and he took me down a couple of times. We made a game out of it like it was for a state championship."

Apparently, the work has paid off.

"We made it a competition, and we've been keeping our eyes on the prize," said Vaughers. "Our next goal is going to the finals. We've been talking about it the whole time. I told him to do what the best he can, like you have him in a cage with you, and you're not going to let him out."

Nathan Kraisser" "Winning Four Titles In Back Of My Mind'
While winning matches at Class 4A-3A states, Centennial 1112-pound sophomore, Nathan Kraisser, has been constantly looking over his shoulder at Southern Garrett's three-time, Class 2A-1A champion, Brutus Scheffel.

Scheffel is favored to win a fourth crown, making him thefourth Marylander to do so, along with Matt Slutzky (Aberdeen), Steve Kessler (Owings Mills), and, Josh Asper (Hereford).

Already a returning state champion, Kraisser has been tabbed as "The Next Four-Timer."

"It's a goal, but I don't really have it in the forefront right now. I'm just taking it one match at a time," said Kraisser. "But it is in the back of my mind."

Kraisser took a big step by winning Saturday's semifinal, 16-2, over Quince Orchard's Eli Bienstock (32-3) in a rematch of last year's final.

In victory, Kraisser improved to 37-2 on the year, and, 74-3 for his career. He will meet Perry Hall's Shaun Murphy (28-2).

"I like to watch good wrestlers, and Brutus is a good one," said Kraisser. "He's someone that I can learn from, because you know, I might be there also one day."

Smithsburg's Monica Hovermale Became The Third Girl To Place At States, First To Acheive 100 Career Wins

Smithsburg senior Monica Hovermale (103) finished sixth at the Class 2A-1A state tournament, becoming the third female to do so.

But Hovermale, who is planning to wrestle in college, totaled 104 career victories, becoming Maryland's first female wrestler to surpass 100 wins.

In order to position herself for placement, Hovermale blanked North Dorchester's Spencer Horseman (41-5) by the score of 7-0 in their consolation quarterfinal bout, rising to 30-6 on the year, and guaranteeing herself a top six finish.

In doing so, Hovermale became the first on the Class 2A-1A side to finish in the top six, joining Arundel's former Class 4A-3A state runner-up, Nicole Woody (103), and two-time Class 4A-3A sixth place finisher, Helen Maroulis (112)  of Magruder, who did so in the past.

Afour-time Washington County champ, Hovermale went 2-2 as a sophomore at states, becoming the first female to win at least a match on the Class 2A-1A side.

Western Tech's Jade Hendricks became the first girl to reach the Class 2A-1A state tournament, the same year that Woody did so on the 4A-3A side. But Hendricks went 0-2 last year and was disappoiinted.

"I talked to Helen some about it over the summer about whenever she was at states. You know, she just told me that it's tough, you know, and that it takes guts," said Hovermale. "You push yourself in the offseason and you try to go everywhere and get better. I came back this year and that paid off."

Hovermale lost her first match on Friday night, 8-4, to Marriotts Ridge's Colin Morse, but won three straight in the wrestle-backs, 7-0, over Williamsport's Taylor Logue, and, 1-0, over Parkside's Tanner Jennings before facing Horseman.

With five seconds left against Horseman, Hovermale couldn't help but watch the remaining time melt off of the clock.

"I saw the clock when it was like a minute left, and I was trying to get more backpoints and I kept trying to stay in control. But with five seconds left, I started counting it down," said Hovermale, who lost both of her bouts after beating Horseman.

"This feels really good after I was giving it everything that I had out there," said Hovermale. "And it came out good."

Southern Garrett's "Little" Davey Stewart Joins Rams' 2A-1A State Finals Club

Of the five state qualifiers for the defending Class 2A-1A champion Southern Garrett Rams, only the little guy, senior Davey Stewart (103), had not reached the finals.

Finishing third at states is not too shabby for any wrestler, but when your on a team that boasts a three-time state titlist in Brutus Scheffel (152), returning state champs in Lex Ozias (140), and, Bubba Scheffel (160), and a state runner-up in Ryan Bennett (189), it can certainly add a sense of belonging.

That was among the things on Stewart's mind when he stepped onto the mat for Saturday's semifinal opposite Glenelg's Ryan Carter, whom he wound up pinning in 3 minutes, 33 seconds.

In victory, Stewart became the Rams' first finalist of the tournament, adding a new level to the team feeling he already had.

"Having all of those state champions on the team really helps with your motivation. That was sort of on my mind when I went out there," said Stewart, who improved to 28-2, with 24 pins and two technical falls.

"It felt pretty good to pin, especially since he's from Glenelg," said Stewart. "It was a good match, and he was a good wrestler. But I felt pretty good, and I was psyched to make the finals like everyone else."

Bennett (17-0) also won a key match against Glenelg, which Southern Garrett dethroned as Class 2A-1A state champs last year, as he downed the Gladiators' David Pruitt (37-6).

North County's Pat Carey Reaches Third, Pat Downey, Second State Finals

State champ Pat Downey (171), and, two-time state runner-up, Pat Carey (189) scored back-to-back victories, by decision, and, pin, respectively, to reach their title bouts of their respective weight classes on Saturday.

Downey overcame what he called "My toughest match of the year" by defeating Dulaney's previously unbeaten, third-place finisher, Brandon Phillips (42-1) by the score of 5-3.

Carey, who has twice been runner-up at 189, pinned Desean Martinez of Clarksburg.

Downey improved to 33-0, with 27 pins, and Carey rose to 37-0 with 32 falls, and will meet Chesapeake-Anne Arundel's state runner-up, Chris Urps (30-4) for the fourth time this season. Downey has won all of his bouts against Urps.

Wilde Lake's Alex Polonsky Reaches Class 4A-3A Finals

The last finalist that Wilde Lake had before this year was Zach Brown, a 215-pound Class 4A-3A state titlist in 2007.

In addition, their last lowerweight finalist prior to that had been Matt Ennis, a 119-pound titlist in 2001, and a third-place finisher in 2002.

On Saturday, sophomore Alex Polonsky (103) joined the list of Wildecats' who reached the Class 4A-3A state title match, this, after decking Urbana's Nick Frank in 3 minutes, 29 seconds.

The fall was the 31st of the year for Polonsky, joining falls in the first, and, quarterfinal rounds in 54 seconds, and, 2 minutes, 58 seconds, respectively.

Polonsky's bout with Frank was tied at 2-2 before he twice cradled Frank, the first time for three nearfall points, and the second time, for the pin.

"This has been a lot of hard work. I think after I lost in the county tournament, I knew that I had to wrestle harder, be more aggressive, practice harder. That's pretty much how I turned it around," said Polonsky, who finished third in this year's Howard County Tournament, but rebounded to win last weekend's Class 4A-3A East Regional title.

"I didn't think about the points when we were tied at that moment, I was just thinking about wrestling my best and doing my best the whole time," said Polonsky. "He had his knee near his head, so I was just able to get the crossface in and I went for the cradle. And then, he had his head down again, and I went for it again and got him."

Polonsky said he didn't envision being in this position until after the regionals. He will meet Nothern Calvert's Brant Leadbetter (35-3).

"Honestly, I didn't see this at all," said Polonsky. "But after I started winning, I got more comfortable. And it definitely feels great to be in the finals."

Dethroned As Class 2A-1A State Champs By Southern Garrett Last Year, Gladiators Look to Return Favor

Glenelg of Howard County moved state runner-up Brendan Conway (135, 41-2), Ryan Carter (103, 34-9),  Nick Caffrey (125, 39-4), Mike O'Leary (152,40-5) and David Pruitt (189, 33-8) into Saturday's Class 2A-1A state tournament semifinals and held a 57-54 lead over defending champion, Southern Garrett. (Check Live Scores)

Conway earned a 14-0 shutout and a third-period fall, Caffrey had a forfeit and a fall, O'Leary, a fall and a decision, Pruitt, a decision and a pin, and, Carter won two, close decisions for the Gladiators, who also have Zach Lewis (112), Zack Gerber (130), Jack Borowkowski (145) and Billy Kuczarski (160) alive in the consolation rounds.

Three-time Class 2A-1A state champion, Brutus Scheffel (152) pinned twice to improve to 38-1, his state champion younger brother, Bubba Scheffel (160) did the same to rise to 37-0, and their state champion teammate, Lex Ozias (140), nailed down a pin and a technical fall to move to 37-1 as their Southern Garrett Rams moved five wrestlers into Saturday's semifinals during their push to earn a second straight Class 2A-1A state tournament crown.

The Rams' state runner-up, Ryan Bennett (189) pinned twice to move to 16-0, and teammate, Davey Stewart (103) improved to 28-2 with a pin and a technical fall as the Rams remained within striking distance of the Gladiators, whom they dethroned as state champs last year.

Stewart will meet Carter, and, Bennett will meet Pruitt in the two head-to-head semifinal bouts between the programs.

"If we're going to win this with five guys, we need everyone to be pinning, tech-falling and majoring because we can't just win decisions and expect to win the tournament," said Brutus Scheffel, a West Virginia University-bound wrestler who is attempting to become only Maryland's fourth, four-time state champion, joining Matt Slutzky (Aberdeen), Steve Kessler (Owings Mills) and Josh Asper (Hereford).

"There are teams who have maybe 11 guys in this tournament, so placing ahead of them would be big, but  we have to place all five of our guys to win it, I think," said Brutus Scheffel, whose coach is David Taylor. "We had some guys who didn't make it to states come back to our practice and go hard wrestling with us, so they're still part of the team and the process."

State champs Tony Farace (112, 33-1) of Oakland Mills, Kemper Baker (125, 32-4) of Williamsport, Mason Goretsas (130, 35-1) of North Carroll, Chad Strube (135, 40-1) of Middletown and Adam Moranduzzo (145, 29-3) of Northern Garrett all advance with little trouble.

Farace scored a 72-second fall and a 12-0 decision, Baker earned a couple of overtime, two-point decisions, andGoretsas, a three-time state finalist, pinned twice -- as did Strube. Moranduzzo reeled off consecutive technical fall victories.

Reservoir Gators Continue Banner Season Under Coach Ryan Kanaskie

Reservoir's 152-pound senior, Mike Mullens, scored a first-round, 14-2, decision over Magruder's Cameron Mayberry, and upset Chopticon's previoulsy unbeaten, Steven Cannon, 7-5, on an overtime takedown to become one of five Gators' wrestlers to reach Saturday's semifinals following the first night of the Class 4A-3A state tournament on Friday night.

Cannon slipped to 36-1.

The performance for Mullens (39-4) made up for the personal disappointment of having suffered narrow defeats during two, straight runner-up finishes at the Howard County Tournament, as well as last weekend's Class 4A-3A East Regional runner-up finish to Stephen Decatur's Josh Barger.

Mullens was joined by Josh Knox (112), Danny Poore (119), Mark Colabucci (145) and Josh Hamilton (285) in the semifinals, with Knox getting one pin, Colabucci nailing down two, and Hamilton, two pins to pace the Gators as they built a lead of, 51-41, over over runner-up, Urbana. (Check live scores).

The Gators, whose program is only eight years old and is coached by Ryan Kanaskie, won this year's Class 4A-3A state duals for the first time in the program's history. They added their first-ever Howard County Tournament crown, as well as last weekend's Class 4A-3A East Region Tournament championship.

"I took all of those losses personally, especially the county tournament, where I thought that I could win this year," said Mullens. "I wrestled tough at counties and ended up losing by one. I thought about that a lot. But there's nothing better than placing at states, and placing high at states, which is my goal."

Two-time state champ, Adam Krop (125), state champ Peter Tatanish (135), Nick Frank (103) and Mike Dailey (215) have paced Urbana, with Dailey pulling a semifinal overtime upset of Walt Whitman's state runner-up, Danny Lee.

Krop is in a difficult semifinal opposite Atholton's Kevin Beck, who has twice reached the state finals, but who won states as a 103-pound freshman.

"Basically, I'm looking at this as it's icing on the cake. I've committed to Princeton University, and I'm really excited about wrestling there next year, and I've already accomplished a lot of the things that a high school athlete could want or ask for. So everything that I do here is just icing on the cake for me, and that's the mentality that I'm going out there with," said Krop.

"I'm going out and cherishing the moment because, obviously, this the last time that I'll get to wrestle here at Cole Field House, hopefully, up to my potential," said Krop. "My weight class is by no means easy. There are plenty of challengers in there that want it just as badly as I do."

The other side of the 125-pound bracket boasts Arundel's sophomore Tyler Goodwin (34-1), who defeated Beck, 10-1, in last weekend's Class 4A-3A East Regional finals.

Goodwin is the younger brother of Frankie Goodwin (130, 35-1), a semifinalist who owns two victories over Krop. Frankie, who is bound for Maryland, and Tyler, transferred from private schools power, Mount St. Joseph, where Frankie was twice a National Preps Tournament runner-up.

"Tyler's a great wrestler, obviously, who is a Cadet Fargo National finalist. He's working out with his brother, Frankie, and he's skyrocketting at the right time. Tyler has a major decision over Beck, and he's not shy to wrestle in big venues," said Krop.

"Tomorrow, I've got Beck in the semis, and he's a two-time state finalist and a state champ," said Krop. "And he definitely had a good match against Quentin Leadbeter."

Krop was referring to Beck's 6-2 victory over Notherrn of Calvert's Leadbeter, who entered their match up with a 34-2 record.

State champs Nathan Kraisser (112, 36-2) of Centennial, Ron Vaughters (140, 42-2) of Old Mill, Pat Downey (171, 32-0) of North County, and Mwanza Wamlumumba (215, 19-0) of Meade all advanced, as did two time state runner-up, Pat Carey (189, 37-0) of North County.

Kraisser has a semifinal rematch of last year's 103-pound final against Quince Orchard's Eli Bienstock (32-2), and Vaughters, what should be a tough one opposite Northern of Calvert's Eric Hoffman (33-2).

Downey nailed down falls in 30, and, 57 seconds, respectively, to earn a rematch of an overtime bout he won last season against Dulaney's unbeaten Brandon Phillips (42-0). Phillips finished third at last year's state tournament at 171 pounds.

Carey pinned in 2:12, and, 55 seconds and must get past Clarksburg's Desean Martinez to make the finals for the third straight year.

Wamulumba meets Dailey in what is shaping up as an interesting clash as well.

Stephen Decatur's Dylan Drew (285, 33-3) pinned twice to reach his semifinal, but the returning, third-place state finisher has to face an opponent in Hereford's Taylor Gload (39-1) who has beaten him twice.

River Hill's Cameron Kirby (119), who has placed as high as second at states, and who was fourth once, defeated his two opponents by a combined, 21-2, on two major decisions.

Magruder's Jordan Tolbert earned his 112th career win with a fall in 5:20, rising to 38-0 at 130 pounds after having blanked his first-round rival, 16-0.

Urbana's Mike's Dailey Double

A year ago, Urbana's Mike Dailey was a slender, 171-pounder with little strength, and even less pure wrestling savvy, but he was a kid with a heart a big as any gymnasium.

"I won most of my matches by gutting it out. I was third at the [Frederick County] tournament, and got second at regions," said, Dailey, now an 18-year-old senior. "But at states, I just didn't wrestle to my full potential, and I got knocked out early. I didn't like the taste it left in my mouth, and I swore to myself that this will never happen again."

Dailey wedded himself to a strict weight-training regimen designed to increase his strength and body mass.

"I didn't do as much wrestling, but I worked as hard as I could to get that extra edge, physically," said Dailey. "I came back to school an inch taller, but I weighed about 205. I liked the way things turned out."

Dailey was undefeated after winning the Arundel Tournament -- his first ever title in high school -- and was first at counties and second at Class 4A-3A West regionals.

"I was pleased with how I was doing," said Dailey, "but I knew that states would be a lot tougher."

But so was Dailey, who ground out a 7-3 victory over Kian Magruder of West Lake. The litmus test, however, was his next bout against Class 4A-3A state runner-up, Danny Lee, of Whitman, who was a runner-up at the prestigious Mount Mat Madness Tournament where Dailey finished third after getting handled, 9-2, by Lee.

"I didn't have my head right. I just wasn't doing the moves I had been practicing," said Dailey. "But that match gave me a little bit of a gameplan against him, and I went into this one knowing what I had to do to win."

Ahead, 1-0, entering the third period, Dailey yielded an escape that sent the bout into overime. After a scoreless first overtime period where neither wrestler could score a takedown, Dailey reversed Lee for a 3-1 lead in the second overtime period, and then rode him out in the third for the upset victory.

"I went into it with the right mindset, knowing that, no matter what, I was going to win," said Dailey. ":After escaping for the 1-0 lead, I knew that would put pressure on him and that I could win the match if I kept my head on straight."

Dailey will have to raise a not higher in his next match if he wants to pull a trifecta.

For Dailey's next opponent is returning state champion, Mwanza Wamulumba, a muscular titlist who is 19-0 and, stands 6-foot-3 -- an inch taller than Dailey.

"I've guaranteed myself placement by reaching the semifinals, but I'm not settling for that," said Dailey. "I'm going to go out there and try to dictate my match, just like I've done so far."

Hey Bernard Wolley, do you even realize what you just did?

Following Friday night's come-from-behind, 7-5, victory over Catonsville's previously unbeaten junior, Tyler Weedon, Seneca Valley junior Bernard Wolley, a 17-year-old third-wrestler, innocently asked someone, "who did I just beat?" and, also wondered, "was he ranked above me?"

The incredulous stranger then explained to the 215-pounder that he had just earned the biggest victory of his high school career.

Wolley overcame an early, 3-1 deficit against Weedon (37-0) for an eventual 7-5 victory that earned him a Class 4A-3A semifinal berth against junior Howard County champ, Alvin Harris.

In victory, Wolley defeated a two-time, third place state finisher, and guaranteed himself a finish among the top six in his weight class.

It's quite an accomplishment for a kid who only began wrestling as a freshman, and who had finished only third in his Montgomery County Tournament, and, who was second at the Class 4A-3A West Regionals to last year's state runner-up, Danny Lee, of Walt Whitman.

"It's great, but everybody here is legit, so I just had to work hard," said Woolley. "I've been listening to my coaches, and my family. I've been praying a lot, and I think that's what has helped me. I've been doing the little things, basically, and that's what has been paying off for me."

Kemper Baker's Open; State Champ Grinds Way Into Saturday's Class  2A-1A Semifinals

A year ago, when then-sophomore, Kemper Baker, of Williamsport in Washington County ground out a 10-9 decision victory over heavily-favored Earl Eppard of Lansdowne, in his words, he received little of the respect deserving of a Class 2A-1A state champion.

"I heard that it was a fluke. I heard that if we wrestled again, he wins every time. So I just built off of it in the offseason," said Baker, a 16-year-old 125-pound junior this season. "I came back and just wanted to prove that what I got last year was deserved."

But it has been far from easy for the returning titlist. After pinning his way through the county tournament for his third crown, Baker ran into a "gauntlet of a Class 2A-1A West Region."

Baker was the No. 1 seed, but managed only a fourth place finish.

"I was really disappointed," said Baker. "I just used it for fuel this week.

But again, neither the first, nor, the second round bouts were a gimme for Baker, who required an overtime takedown to edge returning third-place finisher, Brandon Gain, of Harford Tech, 2-0, and, an early takedown in overtime to slip by Matt Gancayco, 4-2.

"I felt that I won both matches on pure conditioning. In the first match, I felt after the end of regulation, I just told myself, 'I've got to get this next takedown,' and I just knew that I had to get the next takedown," said Baker (32-4), who scored with a high-crotch single to the right leg.

"And in the second match, at the end of regulation, he looked really just beat up and tired. I knew that I was in better shape than him, and I wanted to push the pace," said Baker. "When we were about to go into overtime, my coach was urging me back to the center of the mat. He was telling me that I was in better shape, and I could get this takedown."

He did -- setting up a straight, low-single -- again in the first overtime.

Baker's not settling on a guaranteed top six finish -- which already has been earned by reaching Saturday's semifinal. But he knows that his next bout against West Region king, Myzar Mendoza (29-4) will be a difficult one.

"He beat me 10-6 in last weekend's semifinals in tough match," said Baker. "I just have to wrestle my match and come out aggressively."

Class 2A-1A Round Of 16

Defending champ Southern Garrett County, Glenelg of Howard County, and, state dual meet champion, Bel Air of Harford County were in a three-way tie with 20 points entering the quarterfinal round.

The Rams of Garrett County moved three-time state champ, Brutus Scheffel (152, 37-1),  state champs Lex Ozias (140, 36-1) and Bubba Scheffel (160), state runner-up Ryan Bennett (189, 15-0), and third-place finisher, Davey Stewart (103, 27-2) into the quarterfinal round.

"Davey, in the last couple seconds was close to only getting a major decision, but he got us a tech-fall, and we need to have stuff like that to win this thing. And we want to do the same thing from now on with as many matches as we can," said Brutus Scheffel. "We want to prove a point that we belong, and that only taking five guys down to states, that we can still win it."

Glenelg, the state champion in 2008, advanced state runner-up Brendan Conway (135), Ryan Carter (103), Zach Lewis (112), Nick Caffrey (125), Mike O'Leary (152), Billy Kuczarski (160) and David Pruett (189) into the next round.

Bel Air has Jeff Taylor (103), Steve Cross (130), Anton Lawhon (140), Justin Lorber (145), Blake Calligaro (160) ,  Tom Kuegler (171) and Justin Cole (215). The Bobcats won the Class 2A-1A state duals a couple of weeks ago.

Scheffel is attempting to become only Maryland's fourth, four-time champion, joining Matt Slutzky (Aberdeen), Steve Kessler (Owings Mills) and Josh Asper (Hereford).

State champs Tony Farace (Oakland Mills, 112, 32-1), Kemper Baker (Williamsport, 119, 30-4) and Mason Goretsas (North Carroll, 130) and Adam Moranduzzo all moved forward.

Baker required overtime to defeat Harford Tech's Brandon Gain, scoring a takedown to win, 2-0, over a returning third-place, state finisher.

"First of all, coming out of the West Region for me is an accomplishment by itself, but coming down here and competing against these guys from the other regions, it just seemed like our region is a lot tougher," said Baker.

 "Not that he was an easy match. I have a lot of respect for Brandon, and he's a good wrestler," said Baker. "But coming from my region, I felt that I was better prepared for the match."

Class 4A-3A Round Of 16

Reservoir's Brian Clinton (103), Josh Knox (112), Danny Poore (119), Mark Colabucci (145), Mike Mullens (152) and Josh Hamilton (285) all advanced to the quarterfinal round, with Knox, Colabucci and Hamilton earning falls, and Clinton, a technical fall as the Gators of Howard County lead LaPlata of Charles County, 20-.5, to, 19, heading into the quarterfinal round.

For the Warriors, Jason Jennings (125), John Thomas (130), Daniel Brannon (135), Nick Romero (140), Connar Zimmerman (145), Joey Higgs (152) and Nick Houser (160) moved forward.

Thomas and Higgs each had falls, with junior Higgs, in overtime over No. 1 seeded senior Tom Trcka (38-1) of Franklin at 6:34 of overtime being among the tournament's biggest upsets thus far.

The other upset of the round was also at 152, where River Hill's third-year wrestler, Arvind Stone, a fourth-place regional finisher, overcame a 1-0 deficit to defeat Sherwood's previously unbeaten Josh Lowy (32-1) by the score of 12-8.

State champs, Nathan Kraisser (Centennial, 112, 35-2), Adam Krop (Urbana, 125, 34-2), Kevin Beck (Atholton, 125, 33-3), Peter Tatanish (Urbana, 135, 32-2), Ron Vaughters (Old Mill,140, 41-2), Pat Downey (North County, 171, 31-0, 26 pins),  Mwanza Wamulumba (215, 18-0) all advanced.

Kraisser, Krop, Beck, Vaughters and Downey all won by fall, and Wamulumba, by technical fall.

Krop and Beck could potentially meet in the semifinals. Another strong wrestler at 125 is Arundel's Tyler Goodwin, who is 33-1 and scored a 10-1 victory over Beck in last weekend's Class 4A-3A East Regional final.

His brother, Frankie (130), is bound for Maryland and is another solid performer, boasting a mark of 34-1.

North County's Pat Carey (189, 36-0) is looking to win his first crown after having twice been a runner-up.

Another significant achiever is Magruder's 130-pound Jordan Tolbert, who is after his 38th victory without a loss, with 30 pins.

With 111 career wins, Tolbert, a junior, is on pace to eclipse his brothers' marks at Magruder of 115 career wins, and, 126, respectively, by graduated Zack, and, Alex.

"It's brotherly competition, and of course I want to beat them, but all that I want is a state championship," said Tolbert. "The name of the game is staying focus and trying to wrestle my match."

Tolbert is also motivated by the recent adversity overcome by his coach, Max Sartoph, who was diagnosed with cancer near the end of last season but is now in remission.

"It's always an honor when your coach cares about you, and he wants you to do well," said Tolbert. "When he goes through something like that, and he comes back, it makes you do good for him. It's an inspiration."

Walt Whitman was in third place paced by returning state runners-up, Taylor Leighton (189, 34-1), and,  Danny Lee (215, 34-2). There is a potential rematch of last year's final between Lee and Wamulumba, who won last year's matchup. They would meet in the semifinals.

Also a tough wrestler at 215 is Catonsville's Tyler Weedon (37-0), a two-time third-place finisher.

Another state tournament brings another, brilliant list of story lines.

Of the 15 returning state titlists, one, Southern of Garrett County senior Brutus Scheffel (152), is looking to become only Maryland's fourth, four-time champion.

Another, Urbana of Frederick County's senior Adam Krop (125), is after his third title -- this, after having placed third at states as a sophomore.

And two others, 112-pound sophomores, Nathan Kraiser, and, Tony Farace, of Howard County's Centennial, and, Oakland Mills, respectively, are looking to stay on pace to become four-time state wrestling kings as well.

Kraiser and Farace are among seven returning undergradate champions, along with juniors Lex Ozias (140), and, Bubba Scheffel (160), of Southern Garrett County, Kemper Baker (125) of Washington County's Williamsport, Ron Vaughters (140) of Anne Arundel County's Old Mill, and Pat Downey (171) of Anne Arundel County's North County -- the latter, being a transfer from Baltimore County's Loch Raven.

The other returning state champions are Frederick County's senior Peter Tatanish (135) of urbana, and, senior Chad Strube (135) of Middletown; Atholton of Howard County's senior Kevin Beck (125); North Carroll of Carroll County's senior Mason Goretsas (130); Northern of Garrett County senior Adam Moranduzzo (145); and Meade of Anne Arundel County senior Mwanza Wamulumba (215).

One of the field's more accomplished wrestlers has yet to win a Maryland public schools state championship.

That's because University of Maryland-bound Arundel senior, Frankie Goodwin (130), transferred in from private school power, Mount St. Joseph, where he was a private schools champ as well as a two-time National Preps runner-up.

Just how good is Goodwin? He's beaten Krop twice in high school bouts.

Below is a list of the returning state champions and finalists.

Class 4A-3A

Defending champion: Old Mill of Anne Arundel County, Coach Dan Youngblood.

State champs: Adam Krop, Urbana (125, 2X); Kevin Beck, Atholton (125, 2X finalist); Peter Tatanish, Urbana (135, 2X finalist); Nathan Kraiser, Centennial (112); Ron Vaughters, Old Mill (140); Pat Downey, North County (171); Mwanza Wamulumba (215).
Runners-up: Patrick Carey, North County (189, 2X); Eli Bienstock, Quince Orchard (112); Chris Urps, Chesapeake-Anne Arundel (171); Taylor Leighton, Walt Whitman (189); Danny Lee, Walt Whitman (215).

Class 2A-1A

Defending champion: Southern Garrett County, Coach David Taylor

State champs: Brutus scheffel, Southern-Garrett (152, 3X); Kemper Baker, Williamsport (125); Mason Goretsas, North Carroll (130, 2X finalist); Chad Strube, Middletown (135, 2X finalist); Lex Ozias, Southern Garrett (140, 2X finalist); Tony Farace, Oakland Mills (112); Adam Moranduzzo, Nothern Garrett (145); Bubba Scheffel, Southern Garrett (160).

Runners-up: Chris Wampler, Southern Garrett (119); Brendan Conway, Glenelg (135); Gus Mohlhenrich, Winters Mill (152); Ryan Bennett, Southern Garrett (189).

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