N. Harford, Aberdeen set for wrestling showdown

January 29, 1995|By John W. Stewart | John W. Stewart,Sun Staff Writer

North Harford and Aberdeen are set for what appears to be one of the top county dual-meet wrestling matches in recent years. The two, who have a combined record of 22-4, meet Wednesday at 6:45 p.m. at Aberdeen.

The teams have one common opponent outside the county, and both lost to Rising Sun (10-0). Aberdeen won four bouts in a 39-17 loss, and North Harford won five in a 39-28 defeat. The Hawks have lost to No. 7 North Carroll and Fallston.

Although Aberdeen (13-1) has a solid lineup, backed by a winning tradition, the pairing is made attractive by the possibility of a North Harford win. Losing a dual meet to a county school is not something Aberdeen has done since a Bel Air match in the 1981-82 season.

Bel Air won the county meet that season, too, but since then Aberdeen has dominated the championships with 11 titles, the last 10 in a row since a loss to Edgewood in 1984.

Eac h team has an unbeaten defending county champion, 160-pounder Kit Doran (20-0) for Aberdeen and 171-pounder Paul Konschak (18-0) for North Harford.

Other Aberdeen leaders include Jim Axel (112, 19-1), Corey Pascuzzi (125, 19-2), Eric Morgan (Hwt., 17-4) and Dewayne Whitley (152, 16-4). Other North Harford leaders include Tom Staab (189, 17-2), Jason Owings (125, 15-5), Mike Liptrap (119), Zach Rose (140) and Jason Eicholtz (160).

"This is our best won-lost record since 1978," said North Harford coach Fred Holtz after a match last week in which the Hawks won all but two bouts in beating C. Milton Wright.

This kind of season was anticipated last year when the success enjoyed by a young team (9-3 record with two county champions and four entries in the state tournament) prompted thoughts of "wait until next year."

There has been a carry-over of that enthusiasm. Holtz and his wrestlers have talked about the comparisons of their team and Aberdeen with Rising Sun, and they understand the situation.

"Since I started coaching in 1978 [four years as an assistant, the last 13 as head coach], this is the best team I've had, top to bottom," Holtz said.

James leaves Wright

There were cheers and tears at C. Milton Wright Friday afternoon, as junior Miranda James, a four-sport standout for the Mustangs, played her last game for the school.

She is moving back to Charlotte, N.C., where her family had lived before coming to Bel Air when Miranda was in the fifth grade.

A 3.0 student, James, known for her outstanding speed, has been a three-year varsity starter in soccer, two-year varsity starter in basketball, and a one-year regular in track and field (sprinter) as a freshman, and lacrosse as a sophomore. Among her honors were All-County soccer (second team once, first team twice) and All-County lacrosse (second team).

Redshirt leader

Steve Lewis (Edgewood), a junior transfer from Brevard (Fla.) College, has turned out to be the acknowledged leader of the University of New Mexico's basketball team, even though he is sitting out this season.

There was strong competition at the guards and Lewis did not make an immediate impact on coach Dave Bliss, who grew up with Lewis' high school coach, Bob Slagle, in Binghamton, N.Y.

Now Bliss says, "If I had known then what I know now, I might not have redshirted him. He's a leader."

The 6-foot-4 Lewis, who averaged 24.3 points at Brevard last year, has assumed a leadership role -- a missing team ingredient.

"When I first accepted the redshirting, it was frustrating, because it was the first time in my life I wasn't playing," Lewis said. "Then I thought about my life. I'm 22, and it's time to be serious. I'm here for an education, but I can help in practices.

"So, even though I'm redshirting, I've got to be a leader out there. I don't care if it's practice. That's my time -- time to improve my game and help my teammates. I don't care if they get mad at me, I want them to be better."

Other college notes

Freshmen Alfred McAllister (Edgewood) and twins John and Chad Bowman (C. Milton Wright) are getting extensive playing time for two struggling men's college basketball programs.

At Lafayette (2-16), McAllister has played in all the games, starting four, with a 4.4 scoring average. At Messiah (2-16), where John starts, the brothers have played in every game. John averages 11.6 points, and Chad, 4.5 points and 2.5 steals.

At Lehigh, junior swimmer Joanne Sonberg (Joppa/John Carroll) won the 1,000-yard freestyle in 11 minutes, 7.55 seconds, as the Engineers defeated Drexel in a dual meet.

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