Hammond continues its run of titles Bears outpoint McDonough in adding region crown to list of accomplishments

Class 1A-2A wrestling

March 01, 1998|By Rick Belz | Rick Belz,SUN STAFF

Despite some disappointments and a near tragedy, Hammond won the Class 1A-2A South Region championship yesterday over runner-up McDonough of Charles County, 171-149.

It was the Bears' second regional tournament title. The other one was in 1990. And the victory continued Hammond's remarkable run of championships this season that include the county, region and state dual-meet titles and the county tournament title.

All of that might have meant little to the Golden Bears had an injury to teammate Ryan Mackin proven more serious.

Mackin was injured on an illegal slam by Howard's Matt Mongello during a 125-pound quarterfinal bout Friday, and taken by ambulance to the University of Maryland's Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore. "I had trouble opening my eyes and my right leg wouldn't move," said Mackin, who recovered just in time to witness last night's finals. He will not wrestle again this season but is expected to fully recover.

"I feel badly for Matt because it cost him his shot at states and he's always been a good guy," Mackin said.

Hammond coach Bill Smith said: "It was an emotional blow for us and scary for a while. And I just thank the Lord he's all right."

Other disappointments plagued Hammond. The Bears placed only four wrestlers in the finals, and only Vaymond Dennis (112 pounds) and Danny Embrey (135) took titles.

Adam Clark (160) and Matt Nelson (heavyweight) were runners-up. Pat Jameson (152) and Randy Curtin (171) finished third.

Dennis, who defeated River Hill stalwart Derek Dauberman for the third straight time, said: "Some people are disappointed they didn't wrestle better. They weren't focused when they got their tough matches. But they did well on the wrestle-backs."

Nelson lost a third straight time to Jay Frizzelle of Oakland Mills in a hardfought heavyweight battle. Frizzelle, wrestling what he thought was his best match ever, jumped out in front of Nelson by lifting the 255-pounder over his head and slamming him to the mat.

Frizzelle did the same move again but this time lost control. He was penalized for an illegal slam, but led, 5-1. Nelson rallied, and at one point threw a vicious cross face on Frizzelle, bloodying his nose and getting an apparent bite on the arm in response.

Although Nelson had upper and lower teeth marks on his arm, the referee ruled the bite was not intentional. Frizzelle won, 6-4, and by the end had lifted Nelson over his head three times.

"He's a good competitor," said Frizzelle, who wouldn't say if he had bitten Nelson.

Oakland Mills coach Brian Chadwick said: "It was another great heavyweight match with both wrestlers working hard. Jay's intensity and strength are awesome. After the illegal slam, it was nice that Nelson elected to continue."

Embrey's victory was a nailbitter for Hammond, a 3-2 decision over Centennial's Yeoshen Tsui in a rematch of the county championship bout won by Embrey, 8-6.

Other winners included Oakland Mills' Quentin Milroe at 171 pounds. The impressive county runner-up pinned his way FTC through the tournament, but was disappointed he didn't get to wrestle Hammond's Randy Curtin, the county champ.

Curtin lost in the first round to Centennial's John Anacker, 4-3. Smith blamed the loss on a bad-luck seeding. "Randy should have been the No. 2 seed, but the point system doesn't recognize head-to-heads," Smith said.

Brandon Lauer (103) of River Hill, Jimmy O'Connor (145) of Glenelg and Justin Rix (189) of Centennial also won titles. O'Connor pinned his way through the tournament and Lauer scored 13 takedowns in his quartefinal tech fall.

Pub Date: 3/01/98

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