Only a few area or state wrestling teams can seriously challenge Old Mill's three-time Class 4A-3A state champion Patriots in a dual-meet match.
South River coach Chilly Orme discovered in last night's 46-16 Anne Arundel County league loss to the top-ranked Patriots (6-0), that his No. 10 Seahawks (6-1) was among those few -- briefly, at least.
After five bouts and decisions by Seahawks' Travis Murdock (103, a 14-4 record), No. 4-ranked Bill Whitcher (125, 15-0) and Greg Nida (130, 13-3), the match was tied at 10-10. South River's Steve Glasgow (140, 14-3) scored a first-period pin to give the Seahawks a brief, 16-10 lead.
But the Patriots went ahead, 31-16, after consecutive pins by top-ranked John Bliss (145, 13-0) and Todd Hultgren (152, 11-2) and a 6-4 victory by Mark Proccacini (160) over Andy McMahon (12-4). Brian Layman (171, 12-1), Old Mill's fourth-ranked defending state champion, put the match out of reach, 37-16, with his second-period pin of Jaron Hairston (14-3).
"They were a feisty group tonight, and they made us wrestle their style," said Old Mill coach Mike Hampe, who got a decision from No. 3-ranked Ernie Longazel (189, 12-1) and a pin by fourth-ranked heavyweight Don Marco (12-2) for the winning margin.
"I was surprised by South River's aggressiveness," Hampe said. "Actually, it shocked us."
Murdock overcame a 2-0 first-period deficit, then used two third-period back points to break a 4-4 tie for a 6-4 victory over Jason Bryant (9-4).
But the Patriots got a pin from Steve Lundstrom (112), and Vytas Dulys (119) scored eight takedowns in winning, 19-7.
"I thought we should have won at 152 or 160, but our kids gave all that I could ask," said Orme. "We didn't have their talent, but if we keep wrestling like this, we should do all right."