Superior DeMatha rules at Arundel Tourament Prince George's team claims 6 individual titles

January 11, 1998|By Glenn P. Graham | Glenn P. Graham,SUN STAFF

DeMatha had things well under control going into last night's final at the Arundel Tournament, but the Stags from Prince George's County were far from finished.

Sending seven wrestlers to the championship round and coming away with six winners, the Stags were easily the class of the nine-team field, bettering No. 4 Arundel by a 188-144 margin. Northeast finished third with 107.5 points with Sherwood -- last year's tournament champs -- taking fourth with 92.5 points.

Arundel coach Buddy Hepfer, who got tournament titles from Graham Harris and Rob Connolly, said the Stags are simply ahead of the game right now.

"DeMatha's a real class act who's always well-prepared. It's always tough to wrestle against the private schools because they're 10 to 12 matches up on you at this time of the season," he said.

Arundel junior Pat Ortman knows first-hand after suffering his first loss of the season -- a tough 9-3 decision to DeMatha's Willie Harris.

Ortman is now 16-1 on the season, while Harris, ranked second in the state, already has 29 matches in and is 28-1.

"He was really tough," Ortman said. "I went out there and played his game. I needed to change my shot and didn't. It's a learning experience. The kid is No. 2 in the state and should be No. 1. It shows what I have to do to get up there."

Northeast was 2-for-2 in tournament finals with 135-pounder Dominic Serio and heavyweight James Taylor both coming away winners.

Connolly, ranked second in the state at 160, improved to 16-0 on the season for the Wildcats, while teammate Graham Harris came away with a third-period pin over Annapolis junior Andrew Hemminger at 145 in a much-anticipated match. Harris had a 7-3 lead into the third when he caught Hemminger in a cradle for the pin.

"I knew it was going to be tough. Every time we practice together it's always one point one way or the other," said Harris, who never faced Hemminger in an official match prior.

Annapolis, which tied for sixth with Northern-Calvert with 79 points, also got a runner-up finish from Andrew's twin brother Dan, who lost a tight 5-3 decision to DeMatha's Nick DeLonga at 119.

Oakland Mills Kevin Sutton won his second straight Arundel Tournament title with a 5-3 decision over Sherwood's Frank Edwards in the 130-pound class.

Sutton went to work early, getting all five of his points in the first period and then holding on.

"My goal was to come out fast and get my points early on," he said. "I took a shot and put him on his back in the first 15 seconds. Then I had to hold on. It was a tough match."

A JV match that drew special attention from the crowd was the 112-pound final in which Oakland Mills' Dena Glison fell to Sherwood's Mike Petrone 13-4.

Glison pinned DeMatha's Dan Dugen in the opening-round and then she reached the final with a 6-4 decision over Sherwood's Chris Miller.

In the final, Petrone jumped out to a 7-0 lead before Glison got her first points on a reversal in the first period.

Curley wins at Hammond

Archbishop Curley convincingly won the third Golden Bear Invitational at Hammond last night, 216-167.

Heading into the finals the No. 1-ranked Friars held a 37-point lead over runner-up Hammond, and the only team battle left was for second place. The host No. 3-ranked Golden Bears hung on to nip third-place South Carroll by four points.

Curley placed six wrestlers in the finals including Brian Bricker (112), Mike Frey (125), Mike Boettcher (140), Paul Boettcher (145), Pat Curran (160) and J. D. Mislak (189), but only the Boettcher brothers emerged as champions.

Bricker (20-2) lost a 2-0 decision to Matt Pandullo (15-1) of Meade who had also beaten him earlier this season, 2-1.

Meade placed sixth in the team standings with 105 points.

Pub Date: 1/11/98

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