River Hill turns tables on Scorpions Curtis' pin of Duffy helps Hawks top Oakland Mills


January 07, 1998|By Rick Belz | Rick Belz,SUN STAFF

The pre-match drama nearly surpassed the on-the-mat fireworks during second-year River Hill's 36-24 victory over perennial power Oakland Mills in a battle of unbeaten teams yesterday.

Oakland Mills stayed in its locker room until the last possible moment, delaying the match from its scheduled 4 p.m. start to 4: 23. The Scorpions hoped to give 189-pounder Paul Duffy time enough to return from a doctor with a note that would clear him to wrestle despite a rash on his knee and elbow.

No. 14-ranked River Hill, knowing that its 130-pound stalwart, Billy Allen, seriously injured his ankle during an indoor soccer game the previous night, did a little shadow boxing of its own. The Hawks weighed Allen in, hoping to fool Oakland Mills into thinking that he could wrestle.

Allen didn't wrestle and Oakland Mills' 130-pounder, Kevin Sutton, pinned his replacement, Matt Charmella, in 46 seconds.

Duffy did wrestle, and overcame an eight-point third-period deficit -- only to lose the night's pivotal match to River Hill's Justin Curtis in overtime.

Duffy trailed 10-2, and tied it at 10 by scoring three back points with four seconds left. He came precariously close to the pin that would have pulled Oakland Mills within three points with one match to go. But forty seconds into overtime, Curtis won the battle of fatigue and pinned Duffy for an insurmountable 37-22 River Hill lead. Oakland Mills won the heavyweight match, but each team was penalized one point for unsportsmanlike conduct to make the score 36-24.

"I just had a little extra adrenalin in overtime," Curtis said. "It was good coaching. They never let me give up. He [Duffy] didn't give up either."

Oakland Mills coach Brian Chadwick said: "We didn't know if we would have Duffy until the 135-pound bout, so he probably wasn't as mentally prepared as he might have been. I expected us to win, but we knew we couldn't give any points away. We all wrestled hard. River Hill just wrestled better."

River Hill (7-0 overall, 5-0 league) won the first three matches behind Brandon Lauer (103), Derek Dauberman (112) and Mike Romano (119), all of whom are undefeated this season. Lauer pinned Zach Notes.

The 13-0 River Hill lead quickly evaporated, 16-13, on pins by Oakland Mills' Jeremy Poe (125) and Kevin Sutton (130), and a major decison by Mike Naylor (135).

River Hill's Scott Buescher (140), Jon Ahlstrom (145) and Keith Hutson (152) all bumped up one weight class and scored crucial victories. Hutson's match was tied, 11-11, before he defeated Dave Kay, 15-11. And Jason Fawcett earned a 58- second pin at 160 to inflate River Hill's lead to 31-16.

Quentin Milroe kept Oakland Mills alive with a pin at 171 pounds before Duffy and the Scorpions (4-1, 3-1) came up a little short.

"Too many times over the years the Oakland Mills mystique has been worth a half-dozen points," River Hill coach Earl Lauer said. "But my kids are so young that they don't know about it, so it didn't work today."

Pub Date: 1/07/98

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