North Carroll aims to give Bauerlein going-away gift: state title @

March 04, 1994|By Glenn P. Graham | Glenn P. Graham,Sun Staff Writer

One era is ending and another could be beginning as North Carroll and South Carroll approach the state wrestling tournament that begins tonight at Western Maryland College.

It will be the last go-around for North Carroll coach Dick Bauerlein, who will retire after 19 years. The Panthers, winners of the inaugural dual-meet state championship last month, won the Class 1A-2A West Region last weekend with nine wrestlers advancing to this weekend's tournament.

South Carroll learned Monday it won its first Class 3A-4A North Region championship after being told Saturday it had finished second behind Perry Hall, 107-105.

After further review, officials found the wrong scoring system had been used. The scoring system originally used in an eight-team tournament -- common in some regular-season tournaments -- awarded team points to finishers who place in the top six. The region format has teams awarded with points for the top four finishers. The adjustment gave South Carroll a 92-86 win.

The title is a big boost to the South Carroll program as it prepares for tonight's state tournament with seven wrestlers competing.

"We kind of slipped through the back door," said South Carroll coach Peter Olson. "We haven't won a tournament in a good while so this is an important step. The short term may not have as much effect as the long term."

The Cavaliers are led by sophomores Mike Chenoweth (160) and Charlie Conaway (145) and senior Steve Yokay (171).

Chenoweth (27-1) and Conaway (19-6) excelled in the junior league last year competing with the Warriors. Chenoweth was a champion in his weight class, and Conaway took second in his. Olson believes that experience will help them this weekend.

Yokay brings 19 pins with his 20-8 record. Also qualifying for South Carroll were Tim Hinsche (152), Dan McKennie (heavyweight),Kevin Sakalas (130) and Dan Peiffer (119).

Westminster advanced three wrestlers to the state tournament: Jason Hare (171), Steve Sheppard (130) and Leo Barnes (150).

The only thing that has eluded Bauerlein in his Hall of Fame coaching career is a state tournament title. The Panthers should be right there once again.

"You need some luck and we haven't had that," Bauerlein said. "We're tickled we won the dual-meet title, that was a goal going in. Now we're going into this tournament rooting for the kids, and winning the team title would be icing on the cake."

The Panthers will face some tough early tests in some weight classes.

Doug Dell (28-3) likely will see Northeast's Marty Kusick (25-1) in the semifinals at 112. Kusick won a 4-1 decision over Dell in last year's state finals.

Eddie Davis (24-4) will have a dangerous first-round match when he goes up against Damascus' Nick York at 119. The two met in the state dual-meet tournament two weeks ago with Davis escaping with a 4-3 decision.

Chris Boog (29-1) likely will have to get by Wilde Lake's Mike Green in the semifinals.

Tommy Kiler (30-1) is in the same bracket with Dunbar's Hermandoz Thompson (23-2). They'll likely meet in the second round.

"We got a couple of bad seeds, but if everything evens out with everyone else, we should be right there," Bauerlein said.

"We have some good quality kids going in and are going to need some breaks. I'm pleased with the way we've wrestled in the past couple of weeks and there's no injuries or sickness, so we're going in healthy."

Saidrick Lewis (152, 29-2), Bill Beltz (heavyweight), Tony Zahn (125), Corey Rill (130, 27-5) and Jeff Meyers (160) also qualified for the Panthers.

Francis Scott Key placed five wrestlers in the state tournament after its fourth-place finish in the Class 1A-2A West Region championship.

Randy Owings (135) is a returning state champion who comes in with a 26-1 record. Key coach Bill Hyson also is looking for big things from Zac Yinger (145) and Chris Beale (140). Ryan Etzler (103) and Jason Hooper (119) also could make some noise.

"I think we showed well at regionals with only 10 kids in the lineup. We finished fourth, but were only 3 1/2 points out of second. North Carroll kind of ran and hid from everyone else in first," Hyson said.

"Chris Beale had a real nice tournament. Zac Yinger has been one of our top guys and Owings has been there all year."

Beale, the only senior in the group, comes in with a 24-6 record. Yinger, a junior, is 29-1. Etzler (22-5) and Hooper (19-11) are sophomores. Of Etzler's five losses, four have come against ranked wrestlers -- including three losses to fourth-ranked Billy Baker of Williamsport.

Representing Liberty in the Class 1A-2A tournament tonight will be Joe Smith (103, 21-4), Bryan Seifert (112, 17-3) and Mike Durgin (160, 13-8).

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