Milford Mill wrestler relies on versatility Wrestling: The Millers' Greg Forbes likes to leave his opponents guessing by using a variety of moves.

February 14, 1997|By Lem Satterfield | Lem Satterfield,SUN STAFF

When Milford Mill's Greg Forbes wrestles, all the mat is a stage.

"People get tired of seeing you just go out and pin a guy real quick. And I've been drawing a crowd lately, so I try to give them their money's worth," said Forbes, who bench presses 330 pounds and is a chiseled 5-foot-11, 204.

"If my opponent is strong up top, I'll kill his legs. If he tries to slick me, I'll overpower him," said Forbes, a senior and a defending regional and state champ and a two-time Baltimore County champ at 189 pounds.

Forbes' career record is 83-10, including a 14-0 record this year with 13 pins. The only non-pin on this year's ledger was a default victory.

"I want to show people that I'm strong, but also a smart wrestler," Forbes said. "I want to show that I'm a very versatile wrestler."

During his first season of organized football last fall, Forbes played six different positions.

In three games as a running back, he rushed for 400 yards. As a linebacker, Forbes was among the Millers' top tacklers. He saw spot-duty on both the offensive and defensive lines, and was chosen to play in the Baltimore County all-star game.

"I've been running track since third grade, when I was living in the Bronx [N.Y.]," said Forbes, who also played baseball. "In ninth grade, I was the fastest person on Milford Mill's track team.".

Forbes also played tuba in the marching band during his first three years of high school, and played string bass for the three years before that.

An honor roll student throughout most of his high school years, Forbes has gotten "all A's and B's every quarter" this year and is awaiting the result of the Scholastic Assessment Test he took last month.

"I've heard from a couple of colleges -- UVA [Virginia], Virginia Tech, Boston University, where [Owings Mills' three-time state champ] Grant Johnson went," said Forbes, 17. "I definitely want to wrestle in college. That's a goal that I'm working toward."

Forbes has wrestled 189 for just one tournament so far, but "will have no problem making it for the county meet," coach Tyrell Gordon said. "We've been letting him go at heavyweight so he can concentrate on wrestling.

After going 6-4 as a freshman, Forbes showed remarkable improvement the next season.

Hereford senior Roy Collins was coming off a 31-1 record that included county and region crowns as well as a third place finish at states. But Forbes, then a sophomore, would beat him three times -- dethroning Collins for the county title -- before losing, 2-1, in overtime of their regional title bout.

Perhaps the only down side to his 36-5 10th grade year was being pinned by Eastern Tech's Jamie Blankenship.

"That was at the Hereford Invitational, and I was asleep in the stands right before they called my name to wrestle," said Forbes.

Blankenship, a senior, is still around and expected to be Forbes' toughest challenge at the county tournament. Blankenship was county and region runner-up as a heavyweight last season, but has dropped down to 189, where he is undefeated.

"I'm not trying to jinx myself or anything," Forbes said, "But with all the hard work I'm putting in, there's no way something like that is going to happen again."

Pub Date: 2/14/97

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