Zillmer lifts Hammond over Centennial Painful comeback stirs unbeaten No. 7 Bears

January 24, 1996|By Rick Belz | Rick Belz,SUN STAFF

Two-time county champion Josh Zillmer's third-period comeback inspired Hammond to a 34-25 victory over Centennial in a showdown of league-leading county powers yesterday at Hammond.

Both seventh-ranked Hammond (8-0 overall, 3-0 league) and Centennial (6-2, 3-1) had been unbeaten in league dual meets.

Trailing Matt Augustin, 5-2, after two periods, Zillmer (14-2) scored a reversal, takedown and near fall in the final period to win the 140-pound bout, 9-6.

Zillmer, scheduled for surgery after the season, shook off chronic pain in his left shoulder. Zillmer was penalized a point for leaving the mat in pain in the first period.

"I was in pain the whole match, but I can control it, and I just muscled him over," Zillmer said. "Then the coach used my comeback to fire the team up, and it worked."

Hammond coach Jeff Starnes said, "Josh had beaten Matt twice xTC last season, once on a tech fall, and that's a big psychological thing to overcome."

Centennial coach Todd DeCrispino didn't want to pin his team's loss on Augustin.

"He was winning with 45 seconds left and got caught with a muscle move, but it was a great match. Matt wrestled great," he said.

Hammond led 22-9 after Zillmer's victory, but Centennial rallied with two straight overtime victories, as Tony Carmadella (145) decisioned Adam Clark, 14-12, and Robert Rix (152) decisioned Tony Dakis, 9-7.

Carmadella sent his match to overtime with a tying penalty point for an illegal hold by Clark. Dakis forced overtime on his tying takedown with 36 seconds left in regulation.

After those two wins, Centennial trailed, 22-15, and had the momentum it thought it needed.

But Hammond's Tom Borrego pinned Richard Anacker in 1:45 at 160.

Borrego's pin shifted the momentum back to Hammond, and Hansel Henry followed with a pin at 171, Hammond's fourth of the match, giving the Bears an insurmountable 34-15 lead.

Jan Grothe (130) and Mike Loula (135) won matches that DeCrispino considered critical.

Vaymond Dennis (103) and Jared Zillmer (112) earned pins for Hammond. Zillmer is 15-2 with 14 pins.

Billy Allen (119) and Aaron Perkins (HW) scored pins for Centennial with Joon Kim (171) and Lance Rhodes (125) also winning their matches for the Eagles.

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