Gilman narrowly escapes McDonogh, 30-28 Plitt-Plienis matchup doesn't materialize

February 10, 1996|By Lem Satterfield | Lem Satterfield,SUN STAFF

Last night's 30-28 Gilman victory over visiting McDonogh was the closest in the 10-year series, but many observers left disappointed because they didn't witness the "Plitt-Plienis Super-bout," as coined by Gilman wrestler Vince Tuohey.

Fans had hoped to see a clash between McDonogh's J.R. Plienis (Hwt, 21-0), ranked No. 1 with 15 first-period pins, against Gilman's Greg Plitt (23-0, 16 pins), who is No. 1 at 189.

But holding a 24-22 lead with two bouts left, Gilman coach Mark Harbold sent Plitt out at 189, and McDonogh coach Pete Welch, knowing Plitt to be superior to anyone he could offer, elected to forfeit.

"If we'd have won at 160, I would have probably bumped to 189, hoping Plitt would go to heavy," said McDonogh's Phil Rosenbaum (171, 17-6), whose 16th fall of the year with 42 seconds left avenged an earlier loss to No. 6 Kirk Caldroney (17-4).

"I'm not too disappointed, although there was talk all week about it happening," said Plienis (235 pounds), who also took a forfeit.

"This is a big event for both schools," Plitt said, "so I think the decision was made for the team. Plus, I can beat up on him later on in my career."

Rosenbaum's bout followed a major decision and a technical fall by John Holliday (152) and Damien Davis (160) that put Gilman up, 24-16. McDonogh had led, 16-15, after a third-period escape and takedown by Jamie Moulsdale (145) broke a scoreless tie for a 3-0 decision of Donald Bacoat.

McDonogh scored come-from-behind wins in three of the first six bouts to lead, 13-9, but Gilman's Tommy Knowles (140) put his team up, 15-13, on a 37-second fall. Teammates Tim Webb (112) scored a decision, Ryan Humphrey (130) led, 5-1, but faded in a 5-4 victory over Pete Mitchell, and Will Ashford (135) needed an overtime takedown to beat Andy Seal, 8-6.

McDonogh's early wins came on a fall in 1:57 by Joe Smith (125, 17-6), a major decision by No. 2 state champ Will Filbert (103, 22-3), and a 12-9 win by Matt Burns (119) over Terence Yoon after trailing, 8-1, in the first period. Burns scored five of his eight second-period points via nearfall, and nearly pinned Yoon at the bout-ending buzzer.

In this Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association matchup, Gilman (10-3, 6-1) increased its series lead to 10-0 over McDonogh (7-3, 6-3), but the battle, for the N. Page Worthington Cup, was the Greyhounds' narrowest margin of victory. Its largest was by 60-3, in the first encounter.

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