Arundel puts away Westminster for state title No. 3 Wildcats cruise to 4A-3A duals crown

Owings Mills 2nd in 2A-1A


February 16, 1997|By Lem Satterfield | Lem Satterfield,SUN STAFF

Sophomore 171-pounder Matt Neidig pinned Jared Brown in 3: 31, clinching a 36-17 victory for No. 3 Arundel, and the 4A-3A duals state title over No. 5 Westminster (16-2) last night at North Carroll High.

Neidig's fall, which put the Wildcats (18-0) up, 30-14, with two bouts left, completed a three-bout sweep that broke a 14-14 tie after the first six bouts. In the two prior bouts, No. 6 Isaac Haertel (152, 28-1), a two-time state runner-up, notched his 20th pin of the year in 1: 32, and Rob Connolly (160, 25-3) won, 12-4, against Westminster's Austin Lanham.

"I caught him [Brown] in a front headlock to a step-over. I knew it was tight enough so I just took my time cranking him over," said Neidig (21-6), one of 10 underclassmen on the Wildcats. "I was thinking just to win, but I was glad I pinned."

Fellow sophomore Jeff Blachly (189) nearly added insult to injury. He led, 5-2, and nearly pinned Westminster's No. 1 Ray Henry (24-3) at the buzzer ending the first period of an eventual 9-7 loss. Bobby Kilby (Hwt.) finished things for Arundel, ranked No. 7 in the state, with a pin in 5: 00.

Coming in, said Arundel coach Buddy Hepfer, "we knew nothing about Westminster," which had come off a 27-24 semifinal upset second-seed Frederick (16-1), last year's champ. Frederick is ranked No. 3 in the state.

"The theory is lose by three [decision], win by six [pin]," said Hepfer. "We wrestled well from top to bottom."

Westminster got a technical fall by No. 6 Bobby Biden (112, 26-2), a two-time county and region champ, over Pat Crouse (21-5, 19 pins), and a 7-6 decision by county champ Grant Lindsay (119, 25-7). Also, Dave Spicer (135) ground out a 3-0 victory over the Wildcats' Nick Smith, and teammate Billy Mathis (145) edged Arundel's Steve Banvard, 6-2.

Arundel's early victories came on a major decision from Greg Klinger (103), a decision by Brian Schroeder (125) -- whose three nearfall points in the third period overcame a 2-1 deficit to beat Kyle Burger, 4-3 -- a 14-0 decision by Wayne Nichols (130), and an 8-5 decision by Graham Harris (140, 24-2) over Tim Sharkey.

In the 2A-1A duals, No. 1 Steve Kessler (160, 30-0), a three-time state champ for Owings Mills, improved his career record to 139-0 with a pin and a technical fall. But after edging third-seed Rising Sun (15-2) by 36-28 in the semifinals his Eagles (16-2) lost the title match, 54-17, to Lackey (17-1), ranked No. 4 in the state.

Owings Mills' only pin against Lackey came in 39 seconds from Drew Bowers (135, 27-3, 25 pins). Region champs Steve Kellner (125, 27-3) and No. 4 Ari Dolid (145, 29-1), a state runner-up, won decisions.

Sixth-ranked Anthony Smith (Hwt., 27-2) clinched the match, using an arm bar to pin Ben Brand (26-3) and avenge an overtime loss of a year ago.

Also getting pins against Rising Sun were Bowers, Haden Myers (189, 27-2), and Alex Gitomer (152). Dolid had to overcome an 8-2 deficit for a 10-8 win over Roy Orr (23-3).

In an earlier 55-5 semifinal rout of LaPlata (12-5), Arundel got pins from Haertel, Connolly, Crouse, Kilby, Pat Ortman (119) and Brian Schroeder (125).

Nichols, Harris, Neidig, Klingler, Nick Smith and Banvard (145) won decisions, with Smith winning, 8-7, over LaPlata's second-best wrestler, Mike Moseley (16-5).

Westminster clinched the win over Frederick with a decision by Henry, and a pin by Mike Swain (Hwt).

Also, Chris Reiter (103) reversed an earlier loss, winning 6-3 against Frederick's Scott Linton. Biden had a first-period pin, and Lindsay edged Ivan Zadanov, 5-2. Also winning decisions were Spicer and Jimmy Reiter (130), Spicer's being an 8-4 upset of No. 6 Dustin Bane (26-3).

In earlier 2A-1A semifinals, Lackey hammered fourth seed Francis Scott Key (12-3).

Pub Date: 2/16/97

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