Boothe's persistence helps deliver title to Perry Hall

February 27, 1994|By Rich Scherr | Rich Scherr,Special to The Sun

For Perry Hall's Steve Boothe, the 119-pound final in yesterday's Class 3A-4A North Regionals at Randallstown was an exercise in persistence.

After losing to Eastern Technical's Joe Catlin twice during the regular season and seemingly headed for overtime in yesterday's final, Boothe (31-4) scored a takedown with less than 15 seconds left to defeat his nemesis, 3-1, and propel Perry Hall to a two-point victory over South Carroll for the team title.

"It was a must-win situation -- do or die," said Gators coach Al hTC Miller. "He had all the pressure on him and he still came through."

The Gators had two champions -- the other was 189-pounder Jeff Taylor -- and advanced four wrestlers to next weekend's state tournament at Western Maryland College.

Other champions were Franklin's Avi Meier (103), Dundalk's Dan Simancek (112), Randallstown's Gary Harris (125), Dulaney's Alex Leanos (130) and Steve Carlino (140), Eastern Technical's Joe Scruggs (135), Howard's Eric Paskin (145), Woodlawn's Mykol Thomas (152), Torry Gundy (171) and Darrel Nance (Hvy) and South Carroll's Mike Chenoweth (160).

In a meet where the top four finishers in each weight class move on to the state finals, Boothe's was far from the only story.

* Most dominant: Randallstown's Gary Harris (27-0). He scored a technical fall over Centennial's Jason Nagle in the 125-pound final to earn his 60th consecutive victory.

The four-time Baltimore County champion, who won the state championship at 119 last year, said he feels primed for a repeat performance. "As long as I can keep my intensity up and keep wrestling like I know I can, I feel I can repeat," he said.

* Involved in the best match: a tie (not including Boothe and Catlin).

First, 140-pounders Steve Carlino of Dulaney and Bryan Stewart of Bel Air were deadlocked at the end of regulation before Carlino (25-6) won it eight seconds into overtime with a powerful takedown.

Then, Eric Paskin of Howard and Charlie Conaway of South Carroll, at 145, were deadlocked at 2-2 until late in the third period, when Paskin (28-0) scored on an escape with 11 seconds left to win the match.

* Most courageous performance: Woodlawn's Torry Gundy.

Less than a minute into his 171-pound final against Howard's Seth Eldridge, Gundy aggravated a strained ligament in his right knee that he had first injured in the semifinals.

After a brief halt in the match, Gundy struggling back onto the mat, limping noticeably. He then dominated his opponent and went on to a 9-1 win.

* Biggest disappointment: A season-ending injury for 145-pound top seed Brian Yoakum of Perry Hall. Yoakum, a senior, suffered a hyper-extended arm Friday night and tried to wrestle through it yesterday. But the pain proved too much, and he was pinned in his first match by Conaway at 5:32.

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