N. Carroll has to work for 7th title in row Key hangs tough for close second

February 22, 1993|By Jeff Seidel | Jeff Seidel,Contributing Writer

For No. 2 North Carroll, the journey to its seventh consecutive Carroll County wrestling tournament championship was a tough one.

Six North Carroll wrestlers won individual titles, but five from No. 6 Francis Scott Key did the same. North Carroll, however, won three of four head-to-head matches with Key in the title round and pulled out a 169-161 victory Saturday night at Liberty.

South Carroll finished third with 92 points. Westminster took fourth with 71.5, and Liberty was fifth, scoring 49.

Jeremy Myers (119) of North Carroll, Randy Owings (130) of Francis Scott Key, Neil Brennan (145) of Westminster, Saidrick Lewis (152) of North Carroll, Key's Ed Null (160) and North Carroll's Chris Boog (171) repeated as champions.

North Carroll led 141-136 heading into the final round, but coach Dick Bauerlein, who will be inducted into the state Wrestling Hall of Fame next month, still felt good despite missing Andy Kiler (130, second seed) with an illness and heavyweight Ricky White (third seed) with an injured knee.

"I knew we had some [good] kids in the finals," said Bauerlein. "Jeremy Myers, Tommy Kiler, Doug Dell, Chris Boog, you've got to feel confident with those guys."

Myers, a defending county and state champion, Kiler (125) and defending county champion Boog went up against Eagles wrestlers in the finals. The three, with a combined record of 72-1, scored victories that gave North Carroll the title.

Myers beat Steve Lessard. When the two wrestled a few weeks ago, Myers won, 7-3, but couldn't take him down.

This time, he had a new move ready. Myers (24-0) worked a shrug off a front headlock for an early takedown. He did the same thing later on the way to an 8-0 victory over Lessard (20-5).

"[The early takedown] helped my confidence," said Myers.

Kiler (24-1), a freshman, rolled from the start against Matt Griffin (11-12). He built a 10-0 lead in the third period. Kiler then ran into trouble as Griffin briefly put him on his back with 35 seconds left in the match, but recovered to finish a 12-2 victory.

"I would have liked to have pinned him," said Kiler. "I was relaxing [at the end] a little bit when I shouldn't have been."

Null (24-1) repeated as county champion with a 10-4 decision over Shawn Utz (16-9). The North Carroll wrestler jumped on top early, however, getting a takedown and back points for a 4-0 lead early in the match.

Null then got a break as Utz was penalized a point for an illegal hold. Null followed with a reversal, slicing the lead to one after one. He reversed Utz again in the second period and added back points later for a 7-4 lead.

"I was concerned," said Null about his slow start. "[But] I'm kind of used to coming back. The thing is never to give up."

The next match featured Boog and Tony Bitzel of Francis Scott Key. North Carroll led 163-150 at this point. If Boog won, the Panthers would clinch the title. If Bitzel won, Key could take the title because it had wrestlers in the final two matches and North Carroll was finished.

Boog (24-0) left little doubt about this match. He jumped to an 11-0 lead before pinning Bitzel (7-3) at 3:34 and giving North Carroll the title.

Francis Scott Key coach Bill Hyson knew the head-to-heamatches would be important -- and difficult.

"We knew we had an uphill battle based on the matchups [against North Carroll]," said Hyson. "Being realistic, to win [with] those pairings, we had to overachieve a little bit."

Dell (103), Corey Rill (135) and Lewis (152) also won titles for the Panthers.

Dell (24-0) struggled against Anthony Omelio (19-6) of Liberty. Dell, recovering from being sick, used a reversal at the start of the second period to pull out a 2-0 victory.

"I'm very happy with [Omelio's] performance tonight," said Liberty coach Jeff Hash. "Both were playing it very conservative. [Omelio] wrestled with his head."

Rill (19-6) scored an impressive 6-0 victory over Tim Hinsche (13-12) from South Carroll. Lewis (18-6) pulled out a 4-2 victory in overtime over Matt Crill (20-10) of South Carroll.

In addition to Null, Owings (130), Zac Yinger (140), Dale Bloom (189) and heavyweight Mark Smith also won championships for the Eagles.

Owings (24-1) had little trouble with Kevin Sakalas (4-1) of South Carroll. Owings scored his second

straight title with a pin at the 2:45 mark.

Yinger (22-2) also scored an impressive victory. He defeated Brad Schisler (19-7) of Westminster, 12-3.

Bloom and Smith closed out the night and tournament with titles for Francis Scott Key. Bloom (19-7) took a quick 5-0 lead over South Carroll's Leo Fryrear (19-9) and rolled to an 11-2 victory.

Smith improved his record to 19-5 with a pin of Art Jenne (12-12) of Westminster at 4:25. Smith had received a semifinal bye to get into the final.

The Eagles (10-1-1) have struggled at times in the past few weeks. They lost a tough match to North Carroll, tied Smithsburg and lost defending county champion Chris Beale (135) to mononucleosis and an enlarged spleen. But Hyson warns people not to write off his troops just yet.

"We don't want people to think we went away," said Hyson. "We're half a step behind [North Carroll], but we're pretty evenly matched."

South Carroll and Westminster each came away with one title. Dan Peiffer (112, 20-7) won for the Cavaliers and Brennan (145, 25-2) won for the Owls.

Peiffer topped Jason Elmo of North Carroll, 6-0, in their title match. Elmo had helped the Panthers earlier by knocking off Tony Cahoon of Key. Brennan defeated Eric Hott (22-3) of North Carroll in their match.

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