1994-1995 All-Baltimore City/County Wrestling Teams

March 14, 1995|By Lem Satterfield

CO-COACHES OF THE YEAR

* Guy Pritzker, Owings Mills -- Pritzker, whose Eagles were two-time champs in 1991 and 1992, stunned defending champ Damascus, 91.5-90, to win this year's 1A-2A state crown. His Eagles trailed by five entering the consolation round, and 6.5 entering the title round. But that was before sophomore Steve Kessler (140) ran his state-record unbeaten streak to 72-0 with a thrilling 3-2 victory over two-time state champ Randy Owings (Francis Scott Key), and unheralded Josh Ellin (125) clinched it -- by overcoming a 3-0 deficit with a 5-4 victory over favorite Bruce Pendles (23-1) of Dunbar. Ellin had reached the final on a 4-0 victory over Damascus' Nick York -- a wrestler Pendles, a three-time Baltimore City champ, had hammered, 17-0, a week earlier. "Owings Mills deserved to win," said Damascus coach Dave Hopkins, whose school will join the 3A category next year. "They beat the people they needed to beat and we didn't."

* Pete Chakmakas, Dulaney -- Chakmakas turned a Baltimore County doormat into a force to be reckoned with. The Lions dropped 12 of 14 matches last year, but went 14-2 this season, ending it with a No. 13 area ranking. Dulaney, led by two-time state runner-up Alex Leanos (33-2), was not always at full strength with several starters missing at times. Yet, they managed to finish third in the county tournament -- the program's highest finish ever -- and were dual meet runners-up to South Carroll in the 3A-4A North Region. Leanos and Damon Holmes (160) were county champs. Other county placewinners were Pat Kopalchick (135, second), Scott Kopalchick (145, second) and Aslan Ettehadieh (103, fourth). Leanos (second region), Pat Kopalchick (second) and Ettehadieh (third) were state qualifiers.

CO-WRESTLERS OF THE YEAR

* Danny DeVivo, Mount St. Joseph, Sr., 160, 40-1 -- This two-time All-Metro pick, and last year's All-Metro Wrestler of the Year, is 147-12 for his career with a 74-match winning streak against Maryland opponents. The streak for top-ranked DeVivo (18 pins, six technical falls), an A student, dates back to his 5-1 freshman-season victory over Loyola's Andy Smith for third place in the National Preps. DeVivo won his second straight National Preps crown and won two MSA titles before the league became the MIAA. This year, DeVivo has blanked Bullis' National Prep champ Eugene Brodetski, 10-0; downed Aberdeen's state champ, Kit Doran, 7-2; scored a technical over state runner-up John Pankhurst (LaPlata); and improved to 5-1 against McDonogh's National Prep runner-up Martius Harding. His only loss came in overtime against a Pennsylvania state champ. DeVivo's career includes victories over state champs Marc Proccacini (Old Mill), Al Grunder (Northeast), Chris Brown (McDonough-Charles County) and MSA champ Pete Karvounis (St. Paul's).

* Steve Kessler, Owings Mills, Soph., 140, 36-0 -- Kessler has made a habit of going where no previous wrestler has, putting together consecutive 36-0 seasons and two straight 1A-2A state titles. Kessler was The Baltimore Sun's first freshman All-Metro wrestler. Both last year's record and a 72-0 career mark are records. What's amazing is that fact that Kessler has yet to cut weight. Kessler, top-ranked all season, downed Francis Scott Key's two-time state champ Randy Owings, 3-2, for his second straight state crown. Kessler, who has 36 career pins and 15 career technical falls, is trying to become only the state's second four-time champion since Matt Slutzky, and could go one better if he remains unbeaten in doing so.

ALL-CITY/COUNTY TEAM AT A GLANCE

* Gino Amasia, Calvert Hall, Sr., 112, 47-3 -- A two-time National Prep runner-up and twice an MSA champ, Amasia won Independent Schools and MIAA tournament crowns and was ranked No. 2 at 112 all season. Among his best wins this season was a 10-0 shutout of Arundel's state champ Phil Schleifer and two lopsided victories over Riverdale Baptist's third-ranked Mike Torro. Amasia went 24-1 and earned All-Metro honors last season.

* Steve Boothe, Perry Hall, Sr., 125, 29-4 -- Boothe was the consummate takedown artist, amassing a school-record 109 career victories against only 14 losses. Boothe, ranked No. 2 in the state, won a county crown, three regional crowns with a runner-up finish, and placed third in the states. He had impressive wins over Centennial's state runner-up Jason Nagle and over Owings Mills state champ Josh Ellin. Three of his four losses were to state champs, and the other to a National Prep champ.

* Roy Collins, Hereford, Sr., 189, 33-4 -- Collins was 0-3 against Milford Mill's Greg Forbes when he beat Forbes in overtime to win his second straight regional title. A week later, Collins dropped a 2-1 semifinal loss to eventual state champ Shane Tiffany (Catoctin) before finishing third in the state for the second straight year. Last season, Collins went 37-1 and was a county champ.

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