1997-98 Carroll County wrestling previews

December 02, 1997|By Jeff Seidel

Bowling Brook Prep Thoroughbreds

1996-97 record: 4-8

Coach: Jim Tavenner

Top wrestlers: Kershaw Knaub, Sr., 135; Daniel Kerr, Sr., 152; Gary Stevenson, Sr., 160; George Jones, Sr., 189, Terek Downing, 189; Eric Banks, Sr., Hvy; Paul Graham, Sr., Hvy.

Outlook: The Thoroughbreds are an independent school that wrestles around the metro area. Bowling Brook won two of the last three Maryland Independent Schools B Division titles. As usual, the Thoroughbreds will be strong in the middle and upper weights. They have no wrestlers below 135 pounds, but bring enough balance to the table to be a strong tournament team. All of these wrestlers are first-year competitors, but Graham likes what he's seen so far.

Francis Scott Key Eagles

1996-97 record: 11-4

Coach: Bill Hyson

Top wrestlers: Ronnie Howard, Jr., 119; Mark Mandell, Sr., 125; Clint Day, Jr., 130; Matt Yinger, Sr., 135; Steve Cahoon, Sr., 140; Tim Beale, Sr., 145; Billy Null, Sr., 160.

Outlook: The Eagles lost some good wrestlers to graduation and early injuries are worrying Hyson, but this team still has plenty of talent. Key tied with Catoctin and Williamsport for last year's MVAL title and will rely heavily on its strength in the middle weights, where the Eagles have a solid nucleus. Yinger and Cahoon are returning county champions, and Mandell is in his fourth varsity season. The team's biggest need is for some of its unproven wrestlers to step up and fill some holes.

Liberty Lions

1996-97 record: 7-6

Coach: Michael Flemming

Top wrestlers: Mark Richard, Jr., 125/130; James Haran, Sr., 130/135; Jesse Stank, Soph., 135; Will Frankton, Sr., 140; Rick Skelly, Soph., 152; Lin Brengle, Jr., 160; Mike Saylor, Sr., 171.

Outlook: Flemming, an assistant the past three years, takes over for Jeff Hash. The program has been growing, and it lost just one senior from last season. The Lions have some experience, and Flemming hopes tri-captains Saylor, Haran and Richard provide some leadership and wins. Saylor took third in the county and second in the region. Flemming said the team is "very committed to winning." The Lions have strength in the middle and upper weights.

North Carroll Panthers

1996-97 record: 5-8

Coach: Bryan Wetzel

Top wrestlers: Franny Jackson, Fr., 103; Wyatt Deiaco, Jr., 130; Mike Bezanson, Jr., 140; Alan Hughes, Sr., 160; Adam Boog, Sr., 171; Ben Fleming, Sr., Hvy.

Outlook: Wetzel continues with the building process in his fourth year as coach. The Panthers lost several close matches last year and could have had a much better record. This year could be more fun. North Carroll didn't lose much to graduation. Fleming -- ranked third in the state -- qualified for the states along with Deiaco and Boog and all should be even stronger. Fleming won the county and region last year, and the Panthers need more of the same. Jackson has been a solid recreation wrestler and is ready to go at the varsity level. Depth is this team's problem in certain spots, but the Panthers have several good young wrestlers and the potential is there.

South Carroll Cavaliers

1996-97 record: 9-5

Coach: Pete Olson

Top wrestlers: Kevin Clark, Soph., 125; Scott Wachter, Sr., 135; Mike Muller, Jr., 152; Jason Hamper, Sr., 160; Josh Elder, Sr., 152/160; Scott Warner, Jr., 189; Tom Crown, Sr., Hvy.

Outlook: The Cavaliers have depth and experience, especially in the middle and upper weights, but will be young in the lower ones. Hamper tries to defend his region title, and Muller goes for another county crown. Clark won 20 matches as a freshman, and Crown had a 13-4 record before breaking his hand. The schedule is tough, but if the younger wrestlers can come on, the Cavaliers could have a nice season.

Westminster Owls

1996-97 record: 16-2

Coach: Henry Mohlhenrich

Top wrestlers: Chris Reiter, Jr., 112; Bobby Biden, Sr., 119; Sam Hughes, Soph., 125/130; Jimmy Reiter, Sr., 125/130; Kyle Burger, Jr., 130; Tim Sharkey, Sr., 135; Dave Spicer, Sr., 140; Jared Brown, Sr., 160/171.

Outlook: Last year was one to remember for Westminster. Mohlhenrich drove this team to county and region championships before the Owls took third in the Class 3A-4A state meet -- and finished second in the state dual meet tournament. This year's team is a little different, but the Owls will be a better tournament team, with more balance all around. Spicer -- the county, CMC, region and state champion -- is back and could do more. Biden has taken county and region crowns three straight years. Sharkey was fifth in the state last year. Spicer, Biden and Sharkey all are ranked third in the state in their weight classes. The Owls should be a contender for the state title.

Pub Date: 12/02/97

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